The Trinity and Theodicy: The Trinitarian Theology of von Balthasar and the Problem of Evil, 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

The Trinity and Theodicy

The Trinitarian Theology of von Balthasar and the Problem of Evil, 1st Edition

By Jacob H. Friesenhahn


210 pages

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Why does God permit the great suffering and evil that we see in our world? This basic question of human existence receives a fresh answer in this book as the mystery of evil is explored in the context of the mystery of the Trinity. God's permission of evil and the way in which suffering can lead human persons into the life of the Trinity are discussed in dialogue with the great Swiss theologian Hans Urs von Balthasar. In the light of Balthasar's model of the Trinity as divine self-giving love, we gain a profound grasp of the nature of suffering in human life by placing our suffering in the context of the divine life of the Triune God.


'Friesenhahn takes up the perennial challenges which the problem of evil poses to a Christian understanding of God. But, eschewing the generic theism of more traditional approaches to theodicy, he proposes a distinctly trinitarian approach, inspired by Hans Urs von Balthasar’s theology of the paschal mystery of Jesus’ death, descent and resurrection. Engaging critically with a range of contemporary approaches to the issue and creatively with a wealth of literary sources, the result is a response that is worthy of the attention of all who are interested in this vital theological issue, so critical to the integrity of a Christian theology.' Anne Hunt, Australian Catholic University, Australia 'Friesenhahn’s project is ambitious and well executed… [This study will] be attractive to theologians who are interested in Balthasar’s thought, as well as in the cross-disciplinary conversation between analytic philosophy and contemporary systematic theology.' Theological Studies

Table of Contents

Contents: Introduction; Part I The Problem of Evil: Introduction to the problem of evil; The challenge of evil in analytic philosophy; Responses to the problem of evil in analytic philosophy. Part II A Trinitarian Theodicy: The Bible and theodicy; Hans Urs von Balthasar's theology of the Trinity; The Trinity and theodicy; Glossary; Bibliography; Index.

About the Author

Jacob H. Friesenhahn is the Chair of the Religious Studies Department at TMI - The Episcopal School of Texas. He has also taught at the University of Dallas and Holy Trinity Seminary. He holds a Ph.D. in systematic theology from the Graduate Program in Religious Studies at Southern Methodist University.

About the Series

Routledge New Critical Thinking in Religion, Theology and Biblical Studies

The Routledge New Critical Thinking in Religion, Theology and Biblical Studies series brings high quality research monograph publishing back into focus for authors, international libraries, and student, academic and research readers. This open-ended monograph series presents cutting-edge research from both established and new authors in the field. With specialist focus yet clear contextual presentation of contemporary research, books in the series take research into important new directions and open the field to new critical debate within the discipline, in areas of related study, and in key areas for contemporary society.

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
RELIGION / Christianity / General