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What is good and what is evil, and who decides what it is.

The origin of evil on earth is found with the story of Adam and Eve. Gn. 2:17-18 The Lord instructed "but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die." the LORD God said, "It is not good that man should be alone; I will make him a helper comparable to him."

Satan who is already fallen comes to Eve while she is separated from her husband Gn. 3:5-6 " For God knows that in the day you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil." So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree desirable to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate. She also gave to her husband with her, and he ate.”

Gn. 3:22 Then the LORD God said, "Behold, the man has become like one of Us, to know good and evil. And now, lest he put out his hand and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live forever"

Man learned what evil is by sin - disobedience to God -- by experience. God wanted man to obey him by faith, he would receive instruction on evil by him at the right time; not participate in it.

As sin increased it pervaded mankind’s being. Gn. 6:5 “Then the LORD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.”

Rom 5:12-13 Therefore, just as through one man sin entered the world, and death through sin, and thus death spread to all men, because all sinned-- (For until the law sin was in the world, but sin is not imputed when there is no law.)

there is no man that sinneth not” (1 Kings 8:46). All have sinned. Eccl 7:20 For there is not a just man on earth who does good and does not sin.

Rom 3:12 They have all turned aside; they have together become unprofitable; there is none who does good, no, not one."

The gospel is good news in a world fallen and doing evil.This is only one solution to all. We are to be salt and light to the world to show what the gospel has done in our own lives to deter further what is contrary to God.

Now we have several things to contend with in this world sin, and evil which is sin to its max. Along with the evil one. Yes, there is evil and there is a promoter of Evil.

Jesus taught us to pray, as he prayed on this specific subject.

Matt. 6:13 And do not lead us into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.

John 17:15" I do not pray that You should take them out of the world, but that You should keep them from the evil one.

II Thess. 3:3 But the Lord is faithful, who will establish you and guard you from the evil one .”

How pervasive is this sin, and evil?

I Jn. 5:19 We know that we are of God, and the whole world lies under the sway of the wicked one .

What is evil?

Evil is contrary to the nature of God, his character, his ways, so our conduct is addressed to now do the will of God.

3 Jn 1:11 Beloved, do not imitate what is evil, but what is good. He who does good is of God, but he who does evil has not seen God.

1 Pet 3:17 For it is better, if it is the will of God, to suffer for doing good than for doing evil. (also 1 Pet 4:19)

We are to do good to reflect God’s nature to those around us. Many claim they are on Gods side when they blatantly do evil.

The greater evil is spoken of by the apostle Paul in Rom. 1:18-32. Rom 1:28-32 And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a debased mind, to do those things which are not fitting; being filled with all unrighteousness, sexual immorality, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, evil-mindedness; they are whisperers, backbiters, haters of God, violent, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, undiscerning, untrustworthy, unloving, unforgiving, unmerciful; who, knowing the righteous judgment of God, that those who practice such things are worthy of death, not only do the same but also approve of those who practice them .

God himself is good and all that he does is good.

Matt 19:16-17 “ Now behold, one came and said to Him, "Good Teacher, what good thing shall I do that I may have eternal life?" So He said to him, "Why do you call Me good? No one is good but One, that is, God. But if you want to enter into life, keep the commandments."

Good and evil are not just opposites. Satan is the epitome of Evil, Jesus said of him “He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own resources, for he is a liar and the father of it.” (John 8:44)

This is a deep insight into Satan whom Jesus says murdered from the beginning. 1 John 3:12

Cain is spoken of “was of the wicked one and murdered his brother.”

Satan who is the devil who opposes God has no truth in him he is the originator of the first lie (both in heaven and earth). He uses a shreds of truth combined with his lies to convince people of the opposite of Gods ways.

People more often would rather hear a lie than the truth, especially about themselves. John 3:21 But he who does the truth comes to the light, that his deeds may be clearly seen, that they have been done in God." John 8:45 because I tell the truth, you do not believe Me. The dark is representing sin and evil, the light represents the truth and what is good.

Evil is the absence of good, evil is devoid of anything good. Truth is considered what is Good, evil is what we consider what is false. The lack or absence of good is fertile ground for evil to thrive. Good is not a natural occurrence it takes effort, while and evil are natural in our fallen world it results from sin. Good is obedience to God, and evil is disobedience. Evil is like rust to a car or rot to garment. Sin is like the decline in the 2 nd law of thermodynamics, evil results from intentional sin.

Some say there is no God therefore evil is not often defined. To know something is wrong we must know first that something is right, we must have a standard to measure it by. If one recognizes there is evil there must be a standard. We have many standards in the various cultures. However, there is a universal understanding of what is evil (murder is evil). Since To be conscious of a standard means there must be a moral law giver. The very concept of evil proves there is a God.

Ex of evil: Lets say I want to create a better humanity I want to end society of those who do not believe like me, whose to say I’m wrong since my intention is to want to improve things. Hitler used this standard (called the Hegelian dialectic) to blame everything wrong on one ethnicity.

The EVIL we all face

Evil is a foreign intrusion upon mankind, it is allowed temporarily but does not flow from God, as love is Gods nature, God is not the source of evil, but has allowed it temporarily.

How the existence of evil is compatible with the goodness of God is the question of theodicy.

The atheists argue if God does in fact exist, then why hasn't he dealt with the problem of evil in the world? God is dealing with the problem of evil not in the immediate sense, but in a progressive sense. let's say today, God declared that all evil in the world will now be dealt with and simply cease to exist. If God were to take care of the problem of evil right now, the people who complain about him not solving the problem of evil would also go out with it. Every human being on the planet - the atheist included - would simply vanish into oblivion. Would this solution be a better one than God waiting to deal with the problem of evil in the future. If God deals with us ultimately on the basis of justice alone, we are doomed, God wants to give man Grace, mercy, not justice.

God permits evil? God is all powerful and can get rid of the evil in the world? He can but what would happen to us- we must all be judged by the same standard? The answer is found in God’s patience and longsuffering, His mercy and his timing to deal with matter that has been with us since the Garden.

One day in the future, Christ will return, destroy all wickedness, and hold all men and women accountable by his standard for the things they did during their time on earth. Justice will ultimately prevail and we will understand how effective God has dealt with the problem of evil.

Evil is a necessary component of our free will.Man has free will-we choose what we want.We sin because we want to sin. We follow our strongest inclination at any given time, what our nature dictates - we are not morally inclined toward God but toward sin. As J. B. Phillips has put it: Evil is inherent in the risky gift of free will. God could have made us machines but to do so would have robbed us of our precious freedom of choice, and we would have ceased to be human. We all exercise free choice in the direction of our nature which is traced to the "fall" of man. This is the basic reason for evil and suffering in the world is on man. If man chooses to do what is right God in his sovereignty will be there to help him move in that choice. That is what gods will is, to do what is good and right.

Why does God permit evil? He could stop it, but in so doing would have to destroy us all. Evil is contrary to Gods perfect will, but not his permissible will. Much of the suffering in the world can be traced directly to the evil choices mankind makes. The whole point of Christianity lies not in interference with the human power to choose, but in God producing a willing consent for us to choose what is good instead of evil, over evil. People try to blame it one everyone else but themselves, their choices. Worst of all they blame it on God.

Nothing happens that God is not aware of or ultimately is not in control of (by setting boundaries how far man is allowed to go in his free choice.) He allows evil to continue even though it is not his will. God did not invent evil but he knew it would come about, so he made a provision for it. There is coming a day when this will be taken care of. Right now we are in time of grace, where God is commanding all men everywhere to repent.

As HIS church - Rom 12:9 Let love be without hypocrisy. Abhor what is evil. Cling to what is good.

Titus 3:8 This is a faithful saying, and these things I want you to affirm constantly, that those who have believed in God should be careful to maintain good works .”

We learn of what is good by reading and living out the his instruction in the Word “All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work. (2 Tim 3:16-17)

This helps us grow and keep our spiritual immune system strong, so we can resist sin and evil. You can resist it without identifying it. Heb. 5:13-14 “ For everyone who partakes only of milk is unskilled in the word of righteousness, for he is a babe. But solid food belongs to those who are of full age, that is, those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil.”

Lets be mature and recognize what is taking place and keep ourselves from the direction the world is going.



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