This unit explores diverse perspectives on theodicy, with the aim for students to be able to articulate their own theological perspectives on suffering in relation to contemporary contexts. Participants will engage these contexts of suffering generating diverse proposals towards a theology of hope. Focused theological input, case study analysis, peer reflection and practitioner insight will engage participants as they review and articulate how their theology of suffering and hope intersects with vocational realities.

Unit code: CT2724S

Unit status: Approved (New unit)

Points: 18.0

Unit level: Undergraduate Level 2

Unit discipline: Systematic Theology

Proposing College: Stirling College

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Learning outcomes


Describe and demonstrate an understanding of the most significant theodicies used to make sense of suffering.


Critique a theological understanding of Inaugurated Eschatology as a theology of hope.


Articulate diverse proposals for generating a theology of hope.


Identify resources for responding to expressions of suffering and generating hope in particular contexts.


This unit encourages students to engage with theoretical materials applying their theological understanding to lived experience. They are prompted to reflect weekly upon their readings, and to develop a link between a mini example and their theological frameworks. Through content delivery, theological reflection methods, case studies, practice exercises and assessment tools, learning opportunities will be offered.

Indicative Bibliography

  • Gutierrez, Gustavo. On Job. Maryknoll, NY: Orbis Books, 1987.
  • Harrower, Scott. God of All Comfort: A Trinitarian Response to the Horrors of This World. Lexham Pr, 2019.
  • Kapic, Kelly M. Embodied Hope: A Theological Meditation on Pain and Suffering. Downers Grove: Ivp Academic, 2017.
  • Makant, Mindy. The Practice of Story: Suffering and the Possibilities of Redemption. Baylor University Press, 2015.
  • McCarroll, Pamela R. Waiting at the Foot of the Cross: Toward a Theology of Hope for Today (Distinguished Dissertations in Christian Theology): 11. Eugene, Or: Pickwick Publications, 2013.
  • Moltmann, Jürgen. The Crucified God. Anv edition. Minneapolis: Fortress Press, 2015.
  • --------———. Theology of Hope. 1st Fortress Press ed edition. Minneapolis: Fortress Press, 1993.
  • Peterman, Gerald W., and Andrew J. Schmutzer. Between Pain & Grace: A Biblical Theology of Suffering. Chicago: Moody Pub, 2016.
  • Polk, David P. God of Empowering Love: A History and Reconception of the Theodicy Conundrum. Process Century Press, 2016.
  • Rice, Richard. Suffering and the Search for Meaning: Contemporary Responses to the Problem of Pain. Downers Grove, IL: Ivp Academic, 2014.
  • Scott, Mark S. M. Pathways in Theodicy an Introduction to the Problem of Evil. Minneapolis Minnesota: Augsburg Fortress, 2015.
  • Soelle, Dorothee. Suffering. Translated by Everett R. Kalin. Philadelphia, Pa.: Augsburg Fortress Publishers, 1975.
  • Swinton, John. Raging With Compassion: Pastoral Responses to the Problem of Evil. Grand Rapids, Mich: Eerdmans Pub Co, 2007.
  • Volf, Miroslav. The End of Memory: Remembering Rightly in a Violent World. Grand Rapids, Mich: Eerdmans Pub Co, 2007.
  • Wright, N. T. Evil and the Justice of God. Downers Grove, Ill.: IVP Books, 2013.


Type Description Word count Weight (%)

Essay (2000 words)

2000 40.0
Case Study

Case Study (1500 words)

1500 35.0
Book Review

Book Review (1000 words)

1000 25.0

Unit approved for the University of Divinity by John Capper on 26 Sep, 2019

Unit record last updated: 2019-11-11 07:32:34 +1100