A New Solution to the God and Evolution Conundrum?

Sarah Coakley in the Harvard Divinity Bullentin:

What then are the three problems that confront us when we try to see a coherent relation between a good, providential deity and the unfolding created process? First, there is the issue of how we should understand the relation of God’s providence to prehuman dimensions of creation and their development. Second, there is the issue of how God’s providence can relate to the specific arena of human freedom and creativity. Then third, there is the problem of evil, the question of why what happens in the first two realms manifests so much destructiveness, suffering, and outright evil, if God is indeed omnipotent, omniscient, and omni-benevolent.

Why does modern evolutionary theory intensify these problems? They were, after all, already confronted and tackled with some sophistication in classical Greek philosophy and in early Christian thought, and refined further in the much-ramified discussions of high scholastic medieval theology. But modern Darwinian evolutionary theory appears: (a) to underscore the contingency or randomness of evolutionary “mutation” and “selection,” and thus to render newly problematic the possibility of a coherent divine guidance of precultural revolution; (b) to bring further into question the compatibility of divine providence with the human “freedom” of the “cultural evolution” stage, given the deterministic and reductive assumptions of much evolutionary theory, bolstered more recently by genetic accompaniments to the original Darwinian vision (“freedom” now looks little more than an “elbow room” within a predetermined nexus—so Daniel Dennett; yet, paradoxically, one represented in much modern thought as straining toward an autonomous “will to power” that would precisely compete with, and cancel, an undergirding divine impetus); and thus (c) modern evolutionary theory appears to intensify the problem of evil intolerably. If God is, after all, the author and “sustainer” of the destructive mess and detritus of both precultural and cultural evolutionary processes, why is she so incompetent and/or sadistic as not to prevent such tragic accompaniments to her master plan? If intervention is an option for God, why has he not exercised it?