There are four types of God that I can think of that would satisfy this.
One is a God that is omnipotent and omniscient but has the so-called "Divine Plan." I don't like this idea, because that means that part of God's "Plan," no matter how good the end may be, includes inflicting suffering.
Another God is an omnipotent but not omniscient, and therefore is capable of making mistakes with the decisions that God makes. It can be a loving God, just an error-prone God. I don't particularly like this one either, seems to defeat the purpose of worshiping said God.
Another possible God may be omnipotent and/or omniscient, but we could never know because said God is merely interested in watching things going forward. Again, I find myself concerned with this perception. This God may be loving in his/her/its not wanting to intervene, but this God would also be allowing suffering to happen.
Lastly, and I find this one to be the most agreeable, a God can exist that is not omnipotent. Said God may be omniscient, but that God is not capable of interacting with the world, at least not anymore. As such, this God could very well be loving, but be incapable of interfering with the suffering of the world. This God could also not be omniscient, but it hardly matters, since he/she/it cannot interact with the world. It makes whether that God is loving or not irrelevant, but this type of God could conceivably be loving.
God didn't create evil or suffering. He created angels and a perfect world. One angel fell short of to the glory or God. Yes, God created hell. From hell, with the assistance of the demons, Satan is the father of all bad things. Bad things can include sickness, divorces, etc. Trust me, Jesus, God, etc. is totally REAL! Just think of all the miracles!
First, God did not create evil, he created the possibility of evil. In fact, by doing this, he showed true love by allowing humans to have free will. Our race were the ones responsible for bringing evil into the world. Secondly, the people that are the cause of the evil and suffering in this world will not get eventually get away with this. There will come a time where everyone will be judged for what they have done. And then, evil and suffering will cease forever in the future perfect world that some call heaven. :)
Many times in the bible god punishes wrong doers (Adam and eve, Sodom ad Gomorrah... Etc.) be cause they sinned and the wages of sin is death .... No sin goes unpunished and has to be dealt with ...So he is a reasonable god but also merciful and loving ...
As most christians know god created a lot of things. He also created free will. As we do choose our fate and control our destiny. Evil and suffering exits because of free will. God loves so he gave us a gift of free will.
Adam and eve had free will and ate the forbidden fruit which as we know created their suffering and some of ours. God loves all of his children and welcomes all into his kingdom.But remember: free will=our choice, so we can choose our fate (suffering or happiness). But we can also choose to believe in him.
I am a father and I once had a father who held a great love for me. I would like to answer this from a father's, and a son's, perspective.
A father can caution a son about the dangers of speeding but once the dad grants the freedom to drive he voluntarily concedes control of this situation. This is a voluntary act that is driven by love for his son and by the father's respect for freedom. The father hopes that his son drives safely but recognizes the fact that his son could have a terrible accident, a terrible consequence of the son's actions. The father may observe that his son is speeding and a responsible father does his best to correct the problem. He may even punish his son in an attempt to teach him the dangers of speeding. But with freedom come opportunity, the opportunity to disregard the father's instruction. The outcome may be a terrible accident. The direct cause may be speeding; the indirect cause may be disobedience. None of this diminishes the father's love for his son!
Evil and suffering are facts of life. For some reason humans always seek to find a fault and assign blame. God is frequently the target. It is my belief that we do this because we can't bear to face the fact that we may be at fault. We can't, or choose not to, accept consequences we have brought upon ourselves. We do this and we then come to the conclusion that God does can not love us while allowing us to suffer. It's a matter of accountability, not a matter of the Father's love. See God as you see fit, but this is how I view my God.
When Man was first created, we were blameless and sinless (made in the image of God). It was not until Man corrupted the perfection and in turn, denied God. We were then kicked out of the Garden of Eden (perfection). God, being loving, offered forgiveness to us by sending His son Jesus, to die in place of us. (For the wages of sin in death). Jesus not only died, but on the cross became Sin, assuming the sin for all who believe in Him. Anyone who does so, is washed white as snow, and becomes a new being in Christ. The new being not being bound to the sin of this world, and thus able to enter Heaven. So; we mess up, bring all the atrocities upon ourselves, God offers Jesus as forgiveness, and those who believe shall enter Heaven
God lets evil happen in our lives so that we can see the love that He can provide us with. We just don't give Him the chance to give us love, we blame God that all of this evil is His fault when it's actually ours. God tests our faith by testing our endurance during the tough times, when a loved one dies, He wants us to come to Him for love and support. He is there for us, but are we there for Him?
The Christian God cares and loves us so much! " For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life." John 3:16. God gave us His Son Jesus so that we may be set free of our evil ways. He cares foe us. God may punish sinners but He is still very merciful that He is waiting for you sinners to run home to Him! "And therefore will the LORD wait, that he may be gracious unto you, and therefore will he be exalted, that he may have mercy upon you: for the LORD is a God of judgment: blessed are all they that wait for him." Isaiah 30:18. He is so kind to us that He created satan for free choice. What fun would it be if we were forced to do things a certain way? He is even calling us His children! How great is that? The Lord above all is calling us His children! He will not purposely put His children in harms way if it wasn't part of His plan or for the better of His children. "(For the LORD thy God is a merciful God;) he will not forsake thee, neither destroy thee, nor forget the covenant of thy fathers which he sware unto them." Deuteronomy 4:31. "The house of the wicked shall be overthrown: but the tabernacle of the upright shall flourish." Proverbs 14:11. And "If a son shall ask bread of any of you that is a father, will he give him a stone? Or if he ask a fish, will he for a fish give him a serpent? Or if he shall ask an egg, will he offer him a scorpion?" Luke 11:11-11:12. So why would your Heavenly Father wish to hurt you? He wants the best for us, but if you do not wish to abide by His laws, you will feel the wrath of God. Hell was originally made for satan and the lost angels but satan had entered the heart of man so man had to go to hell with satan. God is very merciful ans gracious to us, just do not live your life in sin, but in His ways.
On the subject of the Christian God:
As shown by the ultimate sacrifice of His Son, Jesus Christ, God the Father has an unconditional and unlimited love for all of His creation. However, when Adam and Eve fell to the Tempter in the Garden of Eden, man's mutual love for God became corrupted and man began to love himself more than God. As said in Matthew 6:24 "No one can serve two masters. Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money." While this verse speaks of money, anything which man could love which is not God could be inserted. In this case, once sin was introduced into the world, man began to serve themselves, and submit to their corrupt and sinful nature. Today, things are no different. Men fall to sin, and because of the free will given to man by God, commit sinful actions which serve not God but the Devil. This causes the evil and suffering you speak of. The Devil is the prince of this world, as he reigns over the sin of the world as shown by his ability to offer Jesus all of the power and wealth in the world. (Matthew 4:8-10) If everyone was as God intended, this world would still be conjoined with Heaven as the Garden of Eden was. But because of sin, the world is corrupt and full of evil and suffering. God did not create evil, in fact, he gave us a way to escape the Hell it brings. John 3:16 says "For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, and whosoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life." This way out is through Jesus for he has created a bridge between Heaven and earth and allows all who believe that He is the Messiah to cross! Sin has been defeated!
God makes us broken and asks us to fix our selves. God's advice on children, beat them with a rod, if they talk back, kill them. Not the best advice giver, considering god drowned all his children. Then god asks for our love, or we burn forever. Lets look at the ten commandments, the first four have nothing to do with morality there more about god's ego. But almost all are punishable by death which is immoral as number six says do not kill. The book uses guilt, shame, fear and hatred, not the best teaching tools. If we are going to take the god of the bible seriously, we should admit that he never gives us the freedom to follow the commandments we like and neglect the rest. Nor does he tell us that we can relax the penalties he has imposed for breaking them. God seems to have many human failings like pride, wrath, jealousy and ego. This does not seem like love to me. God is no better than the men that invented him.
If a god really loved us and was here to watch over us and so on why would he let us go throw suffering and let evil exist? A god that really loved his people would not let them spare throw all the evil and suffering the world has to offer people every day.
The existence of evil and suffering is proof enough that a omnibenevolent and omnipotent God does not exist. A God that is all good and all powerful, would not allow evil and suffering to exist.
However, I do agree that the four possible Gods as proposed in whiteflame's post are possible. However none of the four are omnibenevolent and omnipotent.
A God with a "Divine Plan" is not omnibenevolent as they allow evil and suffering to exist.
A God that is not omniscient, yet still omnibenevolent and omnipotent could create a world where evil and suffering cannot exist; their lack of omniscience has no impact on this.
A God that chooses not to interfere is not omnibenevolent as they allow evil and suffering to exist.
And the fourth God is one is not omnipotent.
Anybody reading the Bible properly, would know that the O.T. God cares more for being worshiped than for the people it Massacres. Body Count: God = Many Thousands, Satan: approx 10. Evil is a Misconception Only. If anything can truly be described as Absolute Evil, then it is the Omni-Malevolent God of the Bible. Yes, the Omni-Malevolence of the O.T. God, returns in Revelations, so There is no Loving God, it is way too Narcissistic. "You must Worship Me or Die". If that is not Megalomania, What Is??? :-D~
Here's a quote by Epicurus:
"Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able?
Then he is not omnipotent.
Is he able, but not willing?
Then he is malevolent.
Is he both able and willing?
Then whence cometh evil?
Is he neither able nor willing?
Then why call him God?”
I hate when people try to explain that their god is both omnipotent and benevolent. If your god is all-powerful, then why doesn't he stop evil? There's no explanation.
God supposedly using or allowing bad things to accomplish good things is built on an assumption that ends justify the means. But this is built on the assumption that someone or something is directing incidents of good or evil.
Thus the real question must be, if evil and suffering exist, did someone ultimately cause it, or is it all circumstantial? If God caused it then alas, he is not just. But if no one caused it, then we must work out justice for ourselves. And if we are responsible for justice, then we must learn to be much more compassionate and loving.
If we can somehow do this, then perhaps God's existence might become more tangible.