“A long time ago,” Dulmog began, “a tale was written. It is said to be the greatest story ever told. But there are accounts in this book that raise questions in my mind.”
“The Book that you are referring to, Mog, is an account of what happened in the Middle East, and is a literalised documentary of events. But it is the interpretations of these events, not only by those who tell these stories in this book, but also by contemporary philosophers–from St. Thomas of Aquinas to Bertrand Russell–which leaves us arguing for or against the existence of God. What is it that you’re not clear about, Mog?”
“It is written that God created all things. So who created the evil angel? Could a God deemed good and just, be the creator of misfortune?
“It is written that God takes care of his sheep. Was it his divine will that Eve finds herself in a disastrous situation with serious consequences for the whole of mankind? When misfortune betides the evil, we call it the Lord’s vengeance. But when it strikes the innocent, what do you call that?
“It is written that God commands you to pluck your eye out and chop your hand off, if your eye or your hand should sin so that the whole body does not end up in hell. If you were to translate that figuratively, meaning don’t look and don’t touch, how do you eliminate impure thoughts?
“It is written that God ordered Abraham to slay his son. He was testing Abraham’s love and faith in Him. Are there not better ways to test love than telling someone to kill your child, and then staying his hand at the last moment?
“So if you believe that there is only one God–not two gods, one good god and another evil god, but one single god–then this one God is accountable for both good and evil. Suffering, they say, is God’s way of testing your faith. So we pray for deliverance from suffering that He Himself subjects us to, because He is testing our faith? There is a French Marquis who has lent his name to describe this sort of behaviour.”