- Dec 2011
My thought about that is that, although someone may not have done something, the (say) deadly disease may have occurred because someone did not do something. It seems to me that God has left it up to us to find solutions to most of the 'slings and arrows of outrageous fortune' of life. And many diseases are no longer problems because someone did come up with a vaccine, treatment, or drug to mitigate the problem.
One of the "go to guys" on this would be St. Augustine. He spent a lot of time on the issue of evil. From a theological and philosophical perspective his POV is interesting because he ties this to human freewill. Of course, this is where Hume would sarcastically remark about the "free will" of "evil" natural events such as earthquakes.
To make a long story short, St. Augustine pointed out that humans are rational. For him, there was no point in humans being rational if there was no free will. Why would God give us this quality or mental capacity if he did not want us to use it ? St. Augustine also pointed out that the concept of being rational implied choice.
BTW, the idea that some evil happened because of something that was lacking can be traced to St. Augustine's. St. Augustine said evil was not created by God and that it is not a thing. Evil is a non-thing or a "deficiency" of something. This is where Hume jumped in to point out that there are different kinds of "evil".
For fun, Boethius, the Roman philosopher, was able to explain that, yes, we have free will, but, God already knows what we are going to do. IOW, God has a different perspective of time than we do. Additionally, knowledge of what happens is not the same as forcing something to happen.