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CVA Weekly Newsletter
September 19, 2012

  1. Upcoming Activist Opportunities
  2. Job and the Theodicy Problem, part 2
  3. This Week’s Sermon from Rev. Frank and Mary Hoffman

1. Upcoming Activist Opportunities
9/25      CO Denver               Hillsong Live Cornerstone Tour
9/25      CO Denver               Hillsong Live Cornerstone Tour
9/29      NC Charlotte       Kutless Christian Rock Concert
9/28-29   CO Denver               Women of Faith Conference
9/28-29   PA Pittsburgh      Women of Faith Conference
9/28-28   MA Amherst              Acquire The Fire Youth Conference
9/30      GA Valdosta        Kutless Believer Tour
10/3      NY New York City        LaCrae Unashamed Tour
10/5-6    WI Milwaukee       Women Of Faith Conference
10/5-6    OR Portland        Women of Faith Conference
10/6-7    CA San Francisco        TABLE World Vegetarian Festival
10/14         IN Anderson        David Crowder Band Concert
10/14         IN Anderson        David Crowder Band Concert
10/21         FL Miami           LaCrae Unashamed Tour 2012
10/25-26  NC Raleigh              FREE Benny Hinn Miracle Service
10/6-7    CA San Francisco        TABLE World Vegetarian Festival
10/7-8    PA Philadelphia         Women of Faith Conference
10/27-28  MA Boston               TABLE Vegetarian Food Festival
10/12-13  CO Colorado Springs     Hearts at Home Western Women's Conference
10/13         FL Tampa           TABLE VegFest
11/17         NY Albany               TABLE NY's Capital Region Vegetarian Expo
Contact Paris at christian_vegetarian@yahoo.com if you can help.

To find out about all upcoming leafleting and tabling opportunities in your area, join the CVA Calendar Group at http://groups.yahoo.com/group/christian_vegetarian/.   

2. Job and the Theodicy Problem, part 2
Last week, I discussed how the prevalence of unnecessary suffering in the world made it impossible to hold that God is both all-powerful (i.e., we live in theodicy – a world governed by God) and that God is good. The Book of Job deals with this problem.
Job begins with a description of the protagonist, who was “blameless and upright, one who feared God, and turned away from evil.” Job was also the most fortunate of men, with the greatest wealth in the country and seven sons among his children. It was unlikely a coincidence that the most blessed man was also the most righteous. Indeed, after God brags about his “servant Job” to Satan, Satan replies, “Does Job fear God for nought? Hast thou not put a hedge around him and his house and all that he has, on every side? Thou hast blessed the work of his hands, and his possessions have increased in the land.”
Satan’s comments confirm the world as a theodicy, with God in charge. What happens next is troubling. Satan declares that Job will curse God if Job’s fortunes are reversed, and God gives Satan permission to take away all that Job has. The subsequent calamities see Job lose all his wealth and his children are killed, yet “Job did not sin or charge God with wrong.” Even after Satan, with God’s permission, afflicted Job “with loathsome sores from the sole of his foot to the crown of his head,” Job “did not sin with his lips.”
Job didn’t accuse God of wrong, but that doesn’t mean that God was blameless. The story describes a theodicy in which God allowed the unjust treatment of a righteous man. The goodness of God is in question. If God chooses to have those who are innocent suffer, then it seems we have two choices. We can challenge God’s goodness or we can adopt an ethic that endorses victimization. The latter approach turns the notion of “good” on its head – to the point of making morality a meaningless term.
In upcoming essays, I will explore, through the lens of the Book of Job, the challenging question of whether or not God is good.
Stephen R. Kaufman, M.D. 

3. This Week’s Sermon from Rev. Frank and Mary Hoffman
Where Is Their Mercy?

Your question and comments are welcome

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