Robert Farrar Capon
Winston Press, 82 pages
Why mention a book that was first published over 40 years ago? Simply because it remains one of the finest theological treatments of God and evil. It’s a classic that deserves fresh reading (and rewards re-reading). The late Robert Farrar Capon is known for his trilogy on the parables. No one proclaims the radical nature of grace with more theological clarity, exegetical depth and humor than Capon. Once you read Capon reveal how astonishing grace is, it’s nearly impossible to not notice it spilling all over the place. In this early book, he takes on the problem of God and evil with his usual wit and refreshing style of writing. This is not your typical theodicy. Capon is honest about his intent: “This book simply tries to remove the theological blinders that keep us from seeing – in both our own case and God’s – the way things really are.” Here is a theology of creation grounded in God’s delight that allows for the “way things are” rather than one that finds clever excuses for God in the face of all that is awry. There is honor for divine mystery here. Most remarkably, this brief book includes a breathtaking exploration of the vocation of the church and the role of the Eucharist in public witness. Capon, who also wrote cookbooks, delightfully includes comments about food and has an array of images that make such a difficult subject very accessible.