Suffering & Evil QuizJewish thinkers throughout the ages have asked: Why do bad things happen to good people?
Question 1. What is Berkovits and Cohen's “Free Will Defense" argument about the source of evil and suffering?
Human evil is the necessary and ever present possibility entailed by the reality of human freedom
Because humans have free will, nothing is truly evil
Because free will does not exist, God is culpable for all sins
Humans have too much freedom, and only religion may restrict it
Question 2. Which of the following did Mordecai Kaplan, the founder of Reconstructionist Judaism, believe?
God is responsible for creating both good and evil forces in the universe
The term "God" represents "the power for salvation" in the universe
Our idea of God is merely a representation for that which we consider to be good
Evil is merely a human construction for that which we cannot understand
Question 3. What is the philosophical conclusion reached by the Book of Job?
Job suffered in this world in order to achieve a reward in the next
Humans are just toys to be played with by God and the angels
It is fruitless for humans to try to figure out why God causes some righteous people to suffer
All of these
None of these
Question 4. How does the Bahir, the earliest kabbalistic work, describe the sefirah (God’s emanation) of "power"?
"The penitential sefirah"
"That which has the name of evil"
"The sefirah of Satan"
"The compassionate one"
Question 5. What did Abraham Isaac Kook think about the relationship between God and evil?
That evil was the opposite of God
That evil did not exist
That, for some reason, God created the force of evil
That one day God would destroy all evil in the world
Question 6. According to the Book of Ezekiel, can someone be punished for the deeds of his or her ancestors?
Question 7. According to Saadiah Gaon, which of these is not a purpose of human suffering?
None of the above
Question 8. Who said that "in strict covenant theology, there can be no innocent sufferers"?
Question 9. According to the Bible, what did God promise to the Jews at Mt. Sinai, if they followed God's ways?
Rewards if they followed God, suffering if they did not
Question 10. Who wrote the book When Bad Things Happen to Good People?
Rabbi Louis Jacobs
Rabbi Harold Kushner