The purpose of this section is to present a viable theodicy.36 However, before embarking upon this endeavor, it will be helpful to temper expectations by briefly considering the parameters and limitations of any conclusions that are drawn.
The Parameters of the Answer
A complete and acceptable answer to the problem need only demonstrate that the presence of evil in the universe creates no internal contradictions within a given theological system. A satisfactory solution is not required to alleviate every tension caused by evil or to provide the specific reasons for every instance of evil. The Christian’s answer need only prove that all his theological beliefs are sufficiently harmonized.
The Limitations of the Answer
An additional consideration preliminary to formulating a theodicy is the recognition of its limitations. The answer to the problem is limited by mankind’s finiteness and inferiority.