A Few Thoughts About Evil
To understand righteousness or evil, we must have a standard of right and wrong. If there is no standard, then it is impossible to decide. A short answer about God’s standards. God’s summary of the standard of right is Luke 10:27, the 10 Commandments (Exodus 20), and all to the glory of God (1 Corinthians 10:31).
Definitions of evil:
C1 Can be something wrong, something harmful (disasters, health problems, etc.), misfortune, character, something unpleasant (odor), or an entity of power (demon), etc.
C2 Some synonyms: There are many, see here (need to scroll down).
C1 The most common word is רַע raʻ as it is used 663 times. It means, much like English, things unpleasant, etc. so in weather, animals, harm, emotions, distress, misery, etc.
C2 In the book of Proverbs, for example, it is used in various ways. This link is a list of the uses in Proverbs.
C1 One Greek word is πονηρός ponērós. It is used 76 times and means annoyance, hardship, physical ailments, and weaknesses, and evil in character, words, and deeds, etc.
D1 Not only are they evil, but they also become more evil over time. This is a result of deception. 2 Timothy 3:13 GNB and evil persons and impostors will keep on going from bad to worse, deceiving others and being deceived themselves.
D2 There is a contrast: Matthew 13:49 GNB It will be like this at the end of the age: the angels will go out and gather up the evil people from among the good
C2 One other Greek word we will read about is κακός kakós. It is used 51 times and means something bad, so regarding morals, agriculture (bad fruit), breaking a law (as in wicked deed, etc.), not nice actions against people (hate, lying, stealing, etc.).
D1 Mark 7:21-23 GNB for from the inside, from your heart, come the evil ideas which lead you to do immoral things, to rob, kill, 22 commit adultery, be greedy, and do all sorts of evil things; deceit, indecency, jealousy, slander, pride, and folly—23 all these evil things come from inside you and make you unclean.”
D2 2 Timothy 4:14 WEB Alexander, the coppersmith, did much evil to me. The Lord will repay him according to his deeds,
Source of evil:
B1 When God created, He created a measure of free will. This is not a sovereign free will as some Calvinists define, rather it is a limited free will. We can resist. Also, I might want to do something but am unable.
C1 An article that explains my position: 5 Arguments For The Existence Of Free Will by Evan Minton.
C2 A follow-up of the above article responds to objects: Responding To Free Will Critics by Evan Minton.
B2 Love is a choice, not an emotion or feeling (see the above articles).
B3 The Lord Jesus states: John 14:15 GW If you love me, you will obey my commandments.
B4 Faith is believing God.
C1 The Greek word for faith (as is most frequently translated) is πίστις pístis. This is a noun.
C2 The Greek word for believe (as is most frequently translated) is πιστεύω pisteúō. This is a verb.
C3 Both have the idea of what is most reasonable. It is not blind faith. The root word for both is πείθω peíthō. I know that we are not to apply too much from these Greek words being related, nevertheless do show a relationship.
B5 The first sinner started loving himself. He is known as satan now.
C1 Ezekiel 28:12-17 ESV Son of man, raise a lamentation over the king of Tyre, and say to him, Thus says the Lord GOD: “You were the signet of perfection, full of wisdom and perfect in beauty. 13 You were in Eden, the garden of God; every precious stone was your covering, sardius, topaz, and diamond, beryl, onyx, and jasper, sapphire, emerald, and carbuncle; and crafted in gold were your settings and your engravings. On the day that you were created they were prepared. 14 You were an anointed guardian cherub. I placed you; you were on the holy mountain of God; in the midst of the stones of fire you walked. 15 You were blameless in your ways from the day you were created, till unrighteousness was found in you. 16 In the abundance of your trade you were filled with violence in your midst, and you sinned; so I cast you as a profane thing from the mountain of God, and I destroyed you, O guardian cherub, from the midst of the stones of fire. 17 Your heart was proud because of your beauty; you corrupted your wisdom for the sake of your splendor. I cast you to the ground; I exposed you before kings, to feast their eyes on you.
D1 Most interpret this as referring to the King of Tyre and only him.
D2 I have some problems with that interpretation.
D3 The king of Tyre was
E1 Never in the Garden of Eden
E2 Never the example of perfection.
E3 Never full of wisdom
E4 Never perfect in beauty
E5 Never covered with every precious stone
E6 Never an anointed guardian cherub
E7 Never on the holy mountain of God
E8 Never walked through the midst of stones of fire
E9 Never blameless
D4 It seems more reasonable to understand this as satan, the power behind the throne of the king of Tyre.
D5 Note how he loved himself (verse 17)
C2 Isaiah 14:12-14 ESV How you are fallen from heaven, O Day Star, son of Dawn! How you are cut down to the ground, you who laid the nations low! 13 You said in your heart, ‘I will ascend to heaven; above the stars of God I will set my throne on high; I will sit on the mount of assembly in the far reaches of the north; 14 I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will make myself like the Most High.’
D1 Most understand this to refer to Nebuchadnezzar and only him.
D2 Personally, I think it refers to Nebuchadnezzar and the power over him, that is, satan.
D3 The being described here fell from heaven. In supreme arrogance, he states that he will ascend into heaven. His plan apparently, is conquering, sitting his throne above all thrones, and ruling as the Most High.
D4 To me, it is kinda tough to think this of Nebuchadnezzar.
B1 The first human sinner was Eve, but she
C1 Admitted that she was deceived
C2 Made no excuses
C3 Received only one curse—pain in childbirth
B2 The second human sinner was Adam, and he
C1 Passed blame to Eve and then to God
C2 Did not admit his guilt
C3 Was the cause of the universe coming under God’s curse
C4 Note the Scriptures say Adam and man: Romans 5:12 NIV Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all people, because all sinned
B3 Sinners are punished to eternal torment, not because of Adam’s sin but our own sin (See here). The sin nature is passed on through the generations. Adam and Eve were no longer sinless. They had the curse of God. Death was coming to them. They could not have sinless children, because they were not perfect, nor sinless.
C1 They had the curse of God and a sin nature. Compare: 1 Corinthians 15:22 NIV For as in Adam all die, so in Christ all will be made alive.
C2 We don’t die for Adam’s sin. Compare: Ezekiel 18:14, 18-20 NIV but suppose this son has a son who sees all the sins his father commits, and though he sees them, he does not do such things: … 18 But his father will die for his own sin, because he practiced extortion, robbed his brother and did what was wrong among his people. 19 “Yet you ask, ‘Why does the son not share the guilt of his father?’ Since the son has done what is just and right and has been careful to keep all my decrees, he will surely live. 20 The one who sins is the one who will die. The child will not share the guilt of the parent, nor will the parent share the guilt of the child. The righteousness of the righteous will be credited to them, and the wickedness of the wicked will be charged against them.
B4 There is truth, and there are lies. God lives in, speaks in, judges in, acts in truth. There is truth, and there is imagination. Truth is reality. Imagination is a substitute truth. Truth was resisted and rejected, so God punished. Humans did not believe God.
C1 Genesis 6:5 WEB Yahweh saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.
C2 Romans 1:17-21 WEB For in it is revealed God’s righteousness from faith to faith. As it is written, “But the righteous shall live by faith.” 18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, 19 because that which is known of God is revealed in them, for God revealed it to them. 20 For the invisible things of him since the creation of the world are clearly seen, being perceived through the things that are made, even his everlasting power and divinity; that they may be without excuse. 21 Because, knowing God, they didn’t glorify him as God, neither gave thanks, but became vain in their reasoning, and their senseless heart was darkened.
Solution to evil:
C1 1 Corinthians 6:8-10 WEB No, but you yourselves do wrong, and defraud, and that against your brothers. 9 Or don’t you know that the unrighteous will not inherit the Kingdom of God? Don’t be deceived. Neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor male prostitutes, nor homosexuals, 10 nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor slanderers, nor extortioners, will inherit the Kingdom of God.
C2 Revelation 21:8 WEB But for the cowardly, unbelieving, sinners, abominable, murderers, sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars, their part is in the lake that burns with fire and sulfur, which is the second death.”
B2 Believe the Gospel and trust in Jesus Christ
C1 Romans 1:16 LEB For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek.
C2 Ephesians 1:13 PickNT about whom, to be sure, we had heard the true Word—the Gospel of your salvation; by whom, since you also believed, you were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise,
C3 Acts 20:21 PickNT solemnly proclaiming to both Jews and Greeks the repentance toward God and the faith into our Lord Jesus.
C4 Luke 18:13-14 PickNT the tax collector, staying a good ways off, did not even venture to look up to heaven, but started beating on his chest, saying, ‘God, be merciful to me a sinner!’ 14 I say to you that this one went back home justified rather than that one; because everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, but he who humbles himself will be exalted.”
A Few Thoughts About Evil
By Choco on 23 Feb 20
Evil, Source of evil, humans are evil, Gospel