Why is sex fun?

P. Yancey 2Why is sex fun? Reproduction surely does not require pleasure: some animals simply split in half to reproduce, and even humans use methods of artificial insemination that involve no pleasure. Why is eating enjoyable? Plants and lower animals manage to obtain their quota of nutrients without the luxury of taste buds. Why are there colors? Some people get along fine without the ability to detect color. Why complicate vision for the rest of us?

It struck me, after reading my umpteenth book on the problem of pain, that I have never even seen a book on “the problem of pleasure.” Nor have I met a philosopher who goes around shaking his or her head in perplexity over the question of why we experience pleasure. Yet it looms as a huge question: the philosophical equivalent, for atheists, to the problem of pain for Christians. On the issue of pleasure, Christians can breathe easier. A good and loving God would naturally want his creatures to experience delight, joy, and personal fulfillment. Christians start from that assumption and then look for ways to explain the origin of suffering. But should not atheists have an equal obligation to explain the origin of pleasure in a world of randomness and meaninglessness? . . .

Where does pleasure come from? After searching alternatives, Chesterton settled on Christianity as the only reasonable explanation for its existence in the world. Moments of pleasure are the remnants washed ashore from a shipwreck, bits of Paradise extended through time. We must hold these relics lightly, and use them with gratitude and restraint, never seizing them as entitlements.

–Philip Yancey
Soul Survivor

Evil is problematic for everyone

Ravi Zacharias 5Let us remember that every worldview–not just Christianity’s–must give an explanation or an answer for evil and suffering…this is not just a problem distinctive to Christianity. It will not do for the challenger just to raise the question. This problem of evil is one to which we all must offer an answer, regardless of the belief system to which we subscribe.

-–Ravi Zacharias

Love requires freedom

J Warner WallaceWhich is more loving: a God who creates a world in which love is possible, or a God who creates a world in which love is impossible? It seems reasonable that a loving God (if He exists at all), would create a world where love is possible. A good God would create a world where love can be experienced and expressed by creatures designed “in His image”. But this kind of “love-possible” a world is, by necessity, a dangerous place. Love requires freedom.

–J. Warner Wallace
Why Would a Good God Allow Moral Evil?

Atheists, God and Suffering

Randy AlcornWhile Western atheists turn from belief in God because a tsunami in another part of the world caused great suffering, many brokenhearted survivors of that same tsunami found faith in God. This is one of the great paradoxes of suffering. Those who don’t suffer much think suffering should keep people from God, while many who suffer a great deal turn to God, not from him.

–Randy Alcorn
If God is Good