Shaul and Yonatan are killed in battle. David is sad about this. Articulates this sadness and
demands to know how it could be that such great men fell in battle. Thus, we’re going to be using this as
a springboard to discuss theodicy (the question of why bad things happen to good people.)
1. To discuss the question of theodicy and hopefully not ruin anyone’s lives while doing so.
2. To discuss the numerous solutions given to the problem, and the problems that exist with eachapproach.
3. The piece by Rav Soloveitchik. The question of theodicy cannot be solved by philosophizing. Evilexists, suffering exists and they cannot be made to disappear because you thought of a theological justification. Rather, suffering must be used as a motivation to overcome sin and evil.1) Shmuel Bet 1:19-23
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Israel, your beauty was ruined on your hills! Oh, how those heroes fell! 20 Don’t tell the news in Gath!Don’t an
nounce it in the streets of Ashkelon. Those Philistine cities would be happy! Those foreigners
would be glad. 21 “May no rain or dew fall on you, mountains of Gilboa. May there be no offerings coming
from your fields. The shields of the heroes rusted there
. Saul’s shield was not rubbed with oil. 22Jonathan’s bow killed its share of enemies, and Saul’s sword killed its share! They have spilled the bloodof men now dead. They cut into the fat of strong men. 23 “Saul and Jonathan—
how dear they were to us!In life they loved being together, and even death did not separate them! They were faster than eagles andstronger than lions.
Because of Sin?
2) Talmud Bavli Masechet Shabbat 55a
Rav Ami said: There is no death without sin, and no suffering without sin.3) Iyov, 11:5-
6 (Iyov’s friend trying to explain why Iyov’s life has been so terrible recently)
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I wish God would answer you and tell you that you are wrong. 6 He could tell you the secret of wisdom.He would tell you that every story has two sides. You can be sure of this: God is not punishing you asmuch as he should.