Defending God: Biblical Responses to the Problem of Evil

Hardcover | April 21, 2005

byJames L. Crenshaw

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In the ancient Near East, when the gods detected gross impropriety in their ranks, they subjected their own to trial. When mortals suspect their gods of wrongdoing, do they have the right to put them on trial? What lies behind the human endeavor to impose moral standards of behavior on thegods? Is this effort an act of arrogance, as Kant suggested, or a means of keeping theological discourse honest? It is this question James Crenshaw seeks to address in this wide-ranging study of ancient theodicies. Crenshaw has been writing about and pondering the issue of theodicy - the humaneffort to justify the ways of the gods or God - for many years. In this volume he presents a synthesis of his ideas on this perennially thorny issue. The result sheds new light on the history of the human struggle with this intractable problem.

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In the ancient Near East, when the gods detected gross impropriety in their ranks, they subjected their own to trial. When mortals suspect their gods of wrongdoing, do they have the right to put them on trial? What lies behind the human endeavor to impose moral standards of behavior on thegods? Is this effort an act of arrogance, as Ka...

James L. Crenshaw is Robert L. Flowers Professor of Old Testament at Duke University. He is the author of many books, most recently The Psalms: An Introduction (2001) and Education in Ancient Israel: Across the Deadening Silence (1998).

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Format:HardcoverDimensions:288 pages, 6.3 × 9.09 × 0.91 inPublished:April 21, 2005Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0195140028

ISBN - 13:9780195140026

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"No biblical scholar has thought so long, so hard, and so well about issues of theodicy in the Hebrew Bible as has James Crenshaw. Presenting the topic in ways that are clear, accessible and imaginative, Crenshaw does not flinch from forthrightly addressing the tough questions. All readerswho are interested in or perplexed by texts relating to God, evil, and suffering will benefit greatly from these theologically mature reflections." --Terence E. Fretheim, Elva B. Lovell Professor of Old Testament, Luther Seminary