Ehrman - God's Problem

Ehrman Bart - God's Problem
This book deals with a matter that is very important to me, not just professionally but also personally. I have written it for a broad audience of regular readers, not for a narrow audience of specialists (who might, I suppose, be considered irregular readers). In view of the intended audience, I have kept endnotes and references to a sparse minimum.
 
 

God's Problem - Ehrman Bart D.

 
Anyone interested in further, in‑depth scholarship can easily find it by looking around a bit. Two excellent places to start are James L. Crenshaw’s Defending God: Biblical Responses to the Problem of Evil (New York: Oxford University Press, 2005), and Antti Laato and Johannes C. de Moor’s Theodicy in the World of the Bible (Leiden: E. J. Brill, 2003). Both books are fully documented, and the former provides an extensive bibliography.
 

God's Problem - Ehrman Bart D. - Preface - Барт Эрман

 
This book deals with a matter that is very important to me, not just professionally but also personally. I have written it for a broad audience of regular readers, not for a narrow audience of specialists (who might, I suppose, be considered irregular readers). In view of the intended audience, I have kept endnotes and references to a sparse minimum. Anyone interested in further, in‑depth scholarship can easily find it by looking around a bit. Two excellent places to start are James L. Crenshaw’s Defending God: Biblical Responses to the Problem of Evil (New York: Oxford University Press, 2005), and Antti Laato and Johannes C. de Moor’s Theodicy in the World of the Bible (Leiden: E. J. Brill, 2003). Both books are fully documented, and the former provides an extensive bibliography.
 
I have focused on the biblical “solutions” to the problem of suffering that strike me as the most important. Since the so‑called classical view dominates the Hebrew Bible and the apocalyptic view dominates the New Testament, I have devoted two chapters to each. A single chapter is devoted to each of the other views I discuss.
 
Translations of the Hebrew Bible are from the New Revised Standard Version; translations of the New Testament are my own.
Special thanks go to my wife, Sarah Beckwith, Professor of Medieval English at Duke and dialogue partner sans pareille; to Roger Freet, Senior Editor at HarperOne, who is tops in his field, and who gave the manuscript a thorough and helpful review; and to my daughter Kelly, who worked over every line with a keen eye.
 
I would like to thank three gracious, generous, and very smart people who have read the manuscript for me, asking me to make changes, and laughing at my folly for occasionally refusing: Greg Goering, my temporary colleague in Hebrew Bible at UNC‑Chapel Hill; my longtime friend and confidant Julia O’Brien, Hebrew Bible scholar at Lancaster Theological Seminary; and one of my oldest friends in the field, the Neutestamentler Jeff Siker, at Loyola Marymount.
 
I have dedicated the book to Jeff and his wife, Judy Siker. I introduced them to each other more than eleven years ago; they fell madly in love and have lived happily ever after. I take all the credit. They continue to be two of my closest and dearest friends who, knowing the most intimate details of my life, still deign to spend long evenings with me drinking fine scotch, smoking fine cigars, and talking about life, family, friends, work, love, virtues, vices, and desires. Does it get any better than that?
 

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