- The ability to choose to love God must also come with a choice to not love God. Otherwise, we would not have a real choice. We would just be loveless robots. A large percentage of suffering in the world is the result of people choosing not to love God and harming other people.
- In a world without natural disasters and diseases, we would also have no real choice to love. A world without natural suffering would be a world full of immortal people with unlimited resources. No real sacrifice of love can be made to God or other people when we have nothing to lose by being loving.
- The purpose of our current life is not happiness. The purpose of our life is to freely accept a loving relationship with God forever, which is the ultimate happiness. Since this is the ultimate good, God spares nothing in persuading us into a relationship with him, even if it means a temporary life of pain. When God lets evil run unchecked in this world, he is doing it so that people realize how unsatisfying sin really is, and turn to him instead for eternal life with Him.
- God makes sure our world is an environment where the entire interlocking chain of events in all of world history results in the most people accepting eternal life with God. However, the best historical chain of events could easily include a lot of painful events.
1) Point #3: William Lane Craig
2) Points #1 and #2 mostly from Richard Swinburne