April 24, 2013

  • What does the Bible say is Evil? (Part 1: The Old Testament)

    THIS IS NOT A POST….. it’s actually the background foundation for an upcoming post that has been over 18 months in the working.  In light of Dan’s (@TheTheologiansCafe) post regarding whether or not some people are “Born Evil“  I thought it might be good to finally finish this and offer it up for all to everyone’s consideration.

    In September of 2011 I posted up a question post that got no comments.  I followed it by a response post, which got many comments — mostly in argument against what the Bible actually states plainly. 

    If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him!  (Matthew 7:11)  (Jesus speaking to the crowd during the Sermon on the Mount.  See also John 3:19)

    That argument led to over a year long study by me on what the Bible calls “EVIL”.  I literally wrote out every Bible verse that uses the word “EVIL” and started verse by verse to jot down notes.  This post is a compilation of my notes, both for the foundation of the upcoming post and likewise for anyone out there who might want the information at their fingertips.

    Here is the basic structure for my notes:

    Verse    —   Who is in Mind? (Or: Who is speaking)   —   What is viewed as Evil?

    Footnotes and thoughts

    Key verses or key thoughts are set out in this color.

    I have to state up front that there are 479 verses in the Bible that use the word “EVIL” — using the New International Version as my standard.   Just for the record:

    • The Good News Version has 637 verses
    • the American Standard Version has 626 verses
    • The King James Version has 592 verses
    • The New Living Translation has 530 verses
    • New American Standard has 510
    • The New International Version has 479
    • The Contemporary English Version has 447
    • The Message has 403  

    Picking the NIV seemed reasonable since it was most commonly used, and had a average number of uses for the term.  It’s also the version I am most familiar with, having spent nearly 20 years in it’s pages.  The “extra” verses in the Good News Version that use the word evil come down to (A) it being a simplified translation which uses the simplest language possible to express a concept and (B) the translation of the word “Wicked” into “evil” in that version.  Were I to include the word “Wicked” from the NIV it would add another 459 (more or less, considering some passages use both words) verses.

    Genesis 2:9    —   General Reference  —  Knowledge of Good and Evil
    God gave man a choice, obedience with blessing or disobedience and death.  Evil was viewed as a KNOWLEDGE of things.  Evil begins in the mind of man and from a corrupted mind comes the poison of sin.  (Matthew 15:19)

    Genesis 2:17  —   Adam   —  Tree of Knowledge

    Here the commandment is given, along with the punishment for disobedience.

    Genesis 3:5   —   General Reference   —   Satan Tempts Eve

    Satan equates “Being Like God” to experiencing / knowing Good & Evil.  he implies that both are necessary when in fact they are not.  In God there is no evil – I do not “Need” to “experience” killing someone to know that it’s wrong, evil.

    Genesis 3:22   —   Adam & Eve   —   Fall of Man

    God brings about punishment in place of death, having already sacrificed for their atonement.  He proclaims man to have become “like God” for having gained knowledge sinfully.

    Genesis 6:5   —   All Mankind   —   Thoughts and intents of the heart

    God views the very thought life of man and says we are fully intent on evil.  We imagine it, dream of it, relish it and pursue it.  God reviews man after 1,600 years and finds us corrupted entirely by sin.

    Genesis 8:21   —   All Mankind   —   Evil Thoughts and imagination

    God acknowledges our every thought is evil from childhood onward.

    Genesis 44:4   —   Brothers of Joseph   —   Theft

    Joseph sets his brothers up and then calls their alleged theft as “evil”.

    Exodus 10:10   —   Moses   —   Accused of evil plans

    Pharaoh accuses Moses of evil where there wasn’t evil intent or purpose, Pharaoh has assumed the role of God in deciding what is or isn’t evil.

    Exodus 32:12   —   God   —   Accused of evil by the Egyptians

    Moses prays to God with a concern of how men will speak of God.

    Exodus 32:22   —   Israel   —   Intent to do evil by idolatry

    Aaron pleads mercy on himself by laying the evil of idolatry at their feet …. “They are set to do evil.”

    Leviticus 5:4   —   All Men   —   Vows to do evil

    God lays down the law on sin, if we even merely vow to do evil, though we act not, we still sin by the intent of our heart.  Thus it is not merely an act that is “Evil” by God’s definition, but similarly even the thought of, or planning of doing evil which God detests.  This is born out further in the Proverbs.  (Proverbs 6:18 in example)

    Numbers 32:12   —   Israel   —   Evil acts judged

    The Lord’s anger aroused over the evil act of idolatry by Israel.

    Deuteronomy 1:35   —   Israel   —   Doubt

    Recounting God’s vow that none of the “evil generation” would survive into the Promise Land.  This is seen as those who doubted God’s ability even after he brought them out of Egypt.

    Deuteronomy 4:25   —   All Israel   —   Idolatry (The making of Idols)

    God says anyone who makes a carved image (Idol) does evil in His sight.

    Deuteronomy 9:18   —   All Israel   —    committed evil before God

    Moses, speaking of the time of the Golden Calf idol, recounts praying for Israel and seeking forgiveness from God for “all the evil (Israel) had done in the Lord’s sight, provoking him to anger.”

    Deuteronomy 13:5   —   False Prophets   —   Leading men astray

    God commands that false prophets or dreamers be put to death for the “Evil” of their seeking to lead men away from God and his commandments.   Thus cults and false religions, by similar intent, do Evil by seeking to draw men away from God.  This thought bears through much of this section.

    Deuteronomy 13:11   —   Anyone   —   Idolatry (Seeking to server ‘another’ god)

    Lengthy passage (13:6-11) wherein anyone who seeks to draw men away from God to worship false gods is deemed as evil.  See key note in verse just above.

    Deuteronomy 17:2,5,7   —   Anyone   —   Worshiping the sun or moon or stars or other gods (Idolatry)

    Anyone who bows in worship to anything God has created — or — seeks to worship a false god, does evil.

    Deuteronomy 17:12   —   Anyone   —   refusing to obey authority or leadership

    People are seen as evil who refuse to heed, obey, or listen to one of the priests that God has placed in Authority.
    To presume to know more than authority raises the issue of pride and arrogance.

    Deuteronomy 19:19-20   —   Anyone   —   seeking to malign another by false witness

    Both the act and the person are seen as evil before God.  The punishment shall be to exact the same punishment that the false witness sought to exact upon another — An eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth.  (Deut. 19:21)  Thus if someone falsely seeks to obtain the death penalty by lying, that person should be put to death themselves when discovered.

    Deuteronomy 21:21   —   A son   —   Rebellion to parents

    A son who is a drunkard, gluttonous, stubborn or rebellious is seen as evil.  He is to be put to death. 

    Deuteronomy 22:21   —   A daughter   —   sexual promiscuity

    A daughter who is found to have been sleeping around is seen as evil.

    Deuteronomy 22:22   —   Any man   —   Adultery

    Any man found sleeping with another mans’ wife shall be put to death.  He is viewed as evil.

    Deuteronomy 22:24   —   Anyone   —   sexual promiscuity

    The scenario is one of rape or adultery but both the man and the woman are seen as evil    —  IF    —  the act was within a city and the woman did not cry out for help.

    Deuteronomy 24:7   —   Anyone   —   kidnapping

    The kidnapper is viewed as evil.

    Deuteronomy 28:20   —   Anyone   —   forsaking God

    The person who forsakes God is seen as evil

    Deuteronomy 31:29   —   Israel   —   Disobedient to the Law of God

    Those (in the future) who turn aside from God’s way are said to be evil.

    Joshua 23:15   —  

    Israel is promised God’s judgment if they rebel.  The judgment is said of “all the evil that was spoken of will come upon you.”  Other translations say ‘disasters’ or harmful things’.

    Judges 2:11   —   Israel   —   Served Ba’al’s

    This act is said to be evil in God’s sight.

    Judges 2:19   —   Israel   —   Evil acts

    Upon the death of a judge, the people of Israel would invariably revert back to doing evil and being stubborn.

    Judges 3:7   —   Israel   —   Idolatry

    They did evil by serving Ba’al and Asherah.

    Judges 3:12   —  Judges 4:1   —   Judges 6:1   —   Judges 13:1

    General reference to Israel doing evil with no specific reference to what the evil was.

    Judges 10:6   —   Israel   —   Idolatry

    Israel did evil by forsaking God to serve false Gods.

    Judges 20:13   —   Men of Gibeah   —   Rape

    All Israel stood up to judge the men who did this evil act.

    1 Samuel 12:17,19-20   —   Israel   —   Seeking a King

    For wanting to be like the nations around them, Israel was said to have committed evil.

    1 Samuel 12:25   —  

    A promise that judgment will fall if Israel falls to evil.

    1 Samuel 15:19  —  Saul  — Greed & Disobedience

    Samuel declares Saul’s taking the spoils of war is disobedience to God’s command and therefore evil.

    1 Samuel 15:23  —  Key Passage —  All men, but Saul in Mind  —  Idolatry, Rebellion

    Famous passage wherein rebellion is said to be as sinful as witchcraft & Arrogance is on the same footing as Idolatry and all are found to be equal as evil before God.

    1 Samuel 16:14-16, 23; 18:10; 19:9

    Saul receives an “Evil Spirit” to trouble him and vex him.

    1 Samuel 24:13  —  Key Passage

    An ancient proverb worth noting  —  “From evil men comes evil deeds”.   This is a concise restating of Matthew 15:10-20.

    1 Samuel 25:21  —  Nabal  — repaying kindness with bitterness or anger

    Here David refers to Nabal as repaying good deeds (the protection of his flocks) with evil (refusal to assist David in his time of need).

    1 Samuel 30:22

    General reference to a few men among David’s troops who caused trouble and were therefore seen as evil.

    2 Samuel 3:39

    David calls those who murdered his son Abner “Evil doers” & calls upon God to repay them for their evil deeds.

    2 Samuel 12:9  — David  — Lust, Adultery, murder & lies

    Nathan the Prophet confronts David over Bathsheba & Uriah, saying David “despised the Word of the Lord” by doing evil.

    2 Samuel 14:17  — General Reference  — General Reference

    The wise woman of Tekoa butters up David by saying he is like an angel of God discerning Evil & Good.

    2 Samuel 22:22  — General Reference  — Turning away from God

    David refers to turning Away from God as “evil”.

    2 Samuel 23:6  — General Reference  — General Reference

    David speaks of the judgment of God is to fall upon evil men.

    1 Kings 1:52  —  Adonijah  —  General Reference

    Solomon speaking theoretically of Adonijah, saying that no harm shall come upon him unless Evil is found in him.

    1 Kings 11:6  —  Solomon  —  Idolatry

    By not completely following God with all his heart, Solomon fell to the Idolatry of his many wives.  Molech, Ashtoreth, Chemosh are all mentioned.  Solomon, to placate his foreign wives, gave them places of worship in Israel.  These “high places” would spread like a plague upon the nation.  The same could be easily said of sin — the more “room” we allow it to have, the more it spreads like a plague through our lives, infecting everything within us.

    1 Kings 13:33  —  Jeroboam, King of Israel  —  Idol Worship

    Jeroboam placed priests at the high places of idol worship so that Israel was led further into idolatry.

    1 Kings 14:9  —   Jeroboam, King of Israel  —  Leading Israel to worship false gods

    Jeroboam is labeled as having done more evil than any beforehand, by creating new gods and idols, and for turning his back on God.

    1 Kings 14:22  —   Judah  —   Idolatry, prostitution, sexual immorality

    Rehoboam is King, Judah is given over to worshiping idols, even to sexual immorality in the form of temple prostitutes, even male prostitutes.

    1 Kings 15:26  —   Nadab, King of Israel  —  General Reference

    General reference to doing evil in the eyes of the Lord.

    1 Kings 15:34; 16:7  —   Baasha, King of Israel  —  General Reference

    General reference to Baasha following in the sins of Jeroboam and thus doing evil in the eyes of God.

    1 Kings 16:19  —   Zimri, King of Israel  — General Reference

    Same as above.

    1 Kings 16:25  —  Omri, King of Israel  — General Reference

    Same as Above.

    1 Kings 16:30  —   Ahab, King of Israel  —  Idolatry

    Ahab did MORE evil than any before him by bringing Ba’al worship into Israel.

    1 Kings 21:20, 25  — Ahab, King of Israel  — General Reference

    Elijah accuses Ahab of doing evil int he eyes of God.  :25 is a footnote saying his evil was as none before, following after the idols of the Amorites.

    1 Kings 22:52  — Ahaziah, King of Israel  — Idol worship

    Son of Ahab and Jezebel follows in his parents ways.

    2 Kings 3:2  — Joram, King of Israel  — General Reference

    No specific sins mentioned, only that he followed after the ways of Jeroboam.

    2 Kings 8:18  —  Jehoram, King of Judah  —  General Reference

    General reference to his doing evil in the eyes of God.

    2 Kings 8:27  —  Ahaziah, King of Judah  —  General Reference

    General reference to Ahaziah doing evil int he eyes of God.

    2 Kings 13:2  —  Jehoahaz, King of Israel  —  General Reference

    Same as Above.

    2 Kings 13:11  —  Jehoash, King of Israel  —  General Reference

    Same as Above.

    2 Kings 14:24  —  Jeroboam 2, King of Israel  —  General Reference

    Same as Above.

    2 Kings 15:9, 18, 24, 28  —  Zechariah, Menahem, Pekahiah & Pekah Kings of Israel  —  General References

    Same as above

    2 Kings 17:2  —  Hoshea, King of Israel  —  General Reference

    Same as Above

    2 Kings 17:13, 17  —  Israel & Judah as nations  —  Worshiping Idols

    One long passage wherein God calls the nations to repentance from the sins of Disobedience, idolatry, astrology, murdering their children, witchcraft and sorcery.  All these things fall under the category of “Evil” by inclusion in this passage.

    2 Kings 21:2, 6, 9  —  Manasseh, King of Judah  —  Witchcraft, Idolatry, Astrology & more

    Manasseh leads Judah into the grossest of evil, including witchcraft, sorcery, idolatry, Ba’al worship, and even murdering of children via sacrifice to idols.

    2 Kings 21:11,15  —  Manasseh, King of Judah  —  General Reference

    God speaks in judgment over Judah for the evil of Manasseh’s sins, and for Judah’s sins as well.

    2 Kings 21:16  —  Manasseh, King of Judah  —  Murder

    Manasseh killed innocent men so voluminously that he covered the land in blood. 

    2 Kings 21:20  —  Amon, King of Judah  —  Disobedience & Idolatry

    Amon did as his father Manasseh had done before him.

    2 Kings 23:32  —  Jehoahaz, King of Judah  —  General Reference

    As his father sinned, so did he.  This was seen as evil in the eyes of God.

    2 Kings 23:37  —  Jehoiakim, King of Judah  —  General Reference

    Same as above.

    2 Kings 24:9  —  Jehoiachin, King of Judah  —  General Reference

    Same as above.

    2 Kings 24:19  —  Zedekiah, King of Judah  —  General Reference

    Same as above.

    1 Chronicles 21:7  —  King David  —  Numbering the warriors

    The act of taking a census of Israel’s fighting men was viewed as evil by God, as David was looking to rely upon military strength rather than God’s power.

    2 Chronicles 12:14  —  Rehoboam  —  Not purposely seeking God’s desires.

    Rehoboam is deemed evil because he did not seek after God in his heart.

    2 Chronicles 21:6  —  Jehoram, King of Judah  —  General Reference

    Only says that he walked in the ways of the kings of Israel and did evil in the eyes of the Lord.

    2 Chronicles 22:4  —  Ahaziah, King of Judah  —  General Reference

    Walked in the ways of Ahab.

    2 Chronicles 29:6  —  Judah, being spoken of generally by Hezekiah  —  Unfaithfulness

    Hezekiah speaks of the nation forsaking God and being unfaithful in His sight as both being evil.

    2 Chronicles 33:2,6   —  Manasseh, King of Judah   —  Sorcery, Divination, Witchcraft & mediums

    Verse 2 states that he followed after the ways of other nations and this was evil.  Verse 6 expands on that by say that he sacrificed his sons in the valley of Ben Hinnom, that he consulted mediums, practiced divination, sorcery & witchcraft and much more.

    2 Chronicles 33:9   —  Judah   —  General Reference

    All of Judah followed after King Manasseh in doing evil.

    2 Chronicles 33:22   —  Amon, King of Judah   —  Idolatry

    He followed in the ways of his father, which was said to be evil.

    2 Chronicles 36:5   —  Jehoiakim, King of Judah   —  General Reference

    Not specifically stated, just that he did evil in the eyes of the Lord.

    2 Chronicles 36:9   —  Jehoiachin, King of Judah   —  General Reference

    Same as above

    2 Chronicles 36:12   —  Zedekiah, King of Judah   —  General Reference

    while mostly general, it is mentioned that he did not humble himself before the prophet Jeremiah

    Nehemiah 9:28   —  Israel (in General)   —  Unspecific

    Honestly unsure here.  It is a reference to Israel in the past with no specific aim to a particular sin.

    Nehemiah 9:35   —  Israel (in captivity)   —  Unspecific

    Man did not serve God nor turn from their evil ways

    Nehemiah 13:7   —  Eliashib, the priest   —  Improper use of the temple

    Eliaship allowed Tobiah, enemy of Israel & Nehemiah, space within the temple even though the law forbid such   — esp. in respect to Ammonites because they sought to curse Irael through Ba’laam

    Esther 8:3   —  Haman   —  Plotting to kill all Jews (Murder)

    Haman’s plot to end the Jewish race was called evil

    Esther 9:25   —  Haman   —  Plotting to kill all Jews (Murder)

    Same as above

    Job 1:1,8   —  Job   —  General Reference

    Job is said to have shunned all evil.

    Job 4:8   —  (Eliphaz Speaking from ignorance)   — 

    Eliphaz is speaking from ignorance, but his words ring as a mirror to Galatians 6:7-8.  What (Evil) men sow, they shall definitely reap judgment.

    Job 8:20   —  (Bildad speaking from ignorance)   — 

    Bildad makes the observation that God does not reject the penitent man, nor does He take the hand of the evildoer.  While fundamentally correct, Bildad’s application of the principle to Job is wrong

    Job 11:11,14   —  (Zophar speaks from Anger)   — 

    Zophar makes a passionate call to Job to repent of his evil, even though Job (rightly) has none to confess.  Zophar is angered by Job’s repeated denials of sin and thus he confronts boldly and with the aim to restore the sinner to God   — not understanding that even calamity plays a part in God’s economy.

    Job 16:11   —  (Job Speaking from perplexity)   — 

    Trying to make sense of what’s happening, Job assumes (?) that God has surrendered him over to evil men.

    Job 18:21   —  (Bildad speaking accusingly)   — 

    Bildad states that Job must have done evil & know nothing of God, seeing all that has befallen him.

    Job 20:12   —  (Zophar speaking from irrelevance)   — 

    Zophar talks (truthfully) on how the evil men will savor their sin like a sweet candy or exquisite food.  While what he says is true, it is totally irrelevant to Job’s situation

    Job 21:30   —  (Job speaking in Defense)   — 

    Job responds by asking Zophar if he’s never asked an evil traveler about the many ways his own life has been spared.

    Job 22:15   —  (Eliphaz speaking)   — 

    Eliphaz accuses Job of following the same path that evil men have gone down

    Job 24:20   —  (Job Speaking)   — 

    Job reminds his friends that in time evil men are forgotten.

    Job 28:28   —  (Job speaking)   — 

    Job summarizes wisdom as fearing the Lord and understanding as shunning evil.

    Job 30:26   —  (Job speaking)   — 

    Job tries to understand how, when he had hoped for good, evil came instead.

    Job 34:8,10,22   —  (Elihu speaking)   — 

    Elihu uses “Evil” three times in this passage. 
    1. He falsely accuses Job of keeping company with Evildoers.
    2. Elihu rightly states that God does no evil.
    3. Elihu rightly states that there is no place where Evildoers can hide from God. 

    Job 36:10,21   —  (Elihu speaking)   — 

    Elihu makes two more references to Evil. 
    1. Speaking on behalf of ‘God’, Elihu states that God commands evil men to repent.
    2. He warns Job to beware of turning to evil.

    Psalms 5:4   —  God   —  General Reference

    God takes no pleasure in evil.  Wicked men cannot dwell with God.

    Psalm 6:8   —  General (Prayer)   —  General Reference

    David tells evildoers to stay away for God has heard his prayer.

    Psalm 7:14   —  General (Prayer)   —  General Reference

    David reminds men that if they plan evil, God will judge them.

    Psalm 10:7   —  Wicked men   —  Spoken evil

    The psalmist reminds us that a wicked man’s tongue is bent towards evil (Re: curses, lies & threats).

    Psalm 10:15   —  Wicked men   —  General Reference

    The psalmist prays for Justice to come upon the evil or wicked man.  (Literally “Break the arm of the evil man.”)

    Psalm 14:4,6   —  General (Prayer)   —  Those who ignore God

    David prays regarding evildoers, men who devour others, & who do not call on God, those who oppress the poor.  (Literally “those who frustrate the plans of the poor”)

    Psalm 18:21   —  (David, speaking of himself)   —  Turning away from God

    David claims to have not done the “Evil” of turning away from God.

    Psalm 21:11   —  General   —  General Reference

    David says that men plot evil against God.

    Psalm 22:16   —  (Messianic Psalm Reference)   — 

    David foreshadows Christ’s crucifixion, specifically that his hands & feet would be pierced.

    Psalm 23:4   —  General (Prayer)   —  General Reference

    David says that by his trust in God, he fears no evil.

    Psalm 26:5   —  (David Praying)   —  General Reference

    David says in prayer that he abhors the assembly of evildoers.

    Psalm 27:2   —  General   —  General Reference

    David confidently asserts that when evil men come against him, they will fail because the lord is is light, salvation & stronghold.

    Psalm 28:3-4   —  (David Praying)   — Deceitfulness 

    David asks the Lord not to take him away with the wicked or evil men, those who speak deceitfully with their neighbors, or who show no regard for the works of God.

    Psalm 34:13-14,16,21   — (Instructional Psalm)   — 

    David seeks to instruct his children by telling them to turn from Evil to do good & to keep their tongue from evil & speaking lies.  He also reminds them that God turns His face away from evildoers.

    The end result is that wicked men will come to an evil end.

    Psalm 35:12   —  (David Praying)   — 

    David prays for the Lord to contend with his enemies, who repay him evil for good.

    Psalm 36:4   —  Wicked men   —  General Reference

    David comprehends the ways of wicked men and how they pursue sin, even on their bed they plot evil deeds, committing his heart to evil plans.

    David continues by remembering the love, faithfulness, righteousness & justice of God and concludes by remembering that evildoers always meet their end by the judgment of God.

    Psalm 37:1,8-9,27   —  (Instructional Psalm)   — 

    David begins by telling us not to worry about evil men or to be envious of men who do wrong.

    David proceeds by telling us to commit our plans to God, to trust him, to be still before Him and wait for God.  David tells us to refrain from anger, wrath & worry, which only lead to evil, & then reminds us that evildoers have no future with the Lord.

    In the end, David tells us to turn from evil, which he spends verses 12-21 defining.  By doing this we find that the Lord remains faithful to help us.

    Psalm 38:20   —  (David Praying)   —  General Reference

    David asks the Lord to deliver him from men who “repay my good with evil.”

    Psalm 49:5   —  (Instructional Psalm)   — 

    The psalmist simply asks why he should fear when evil days come.

    Psalm 50:19   —  (The Lord speaks in condemnation)   —  Using our mouths for evil

    God says (a) that we hate instruction (b) cast God’s word away (c) join a thief in his sin (d) make adulterers our companions (e) use our mouths for evil (f) lie to deceive (g) speak in slander of our own families and in the end we assume that God is like us.

    Psalm 51:4   —  (David praying)   —  Murder, adultery, deceit

    David assumes responsibility for the evil of his sin against God.

    Psalm 52:1,3   —  General   —  General Reference

    David questions why men boast of evil & prefer evil over good.  It could be that “prefer telling lies rather than truth” is the evil that David refers to.

    Psalm 53:4   —  (David Reflecting)   —  Those who turn from God

    David starts by reminding us that fools claim there is no God and moves froward to exlaim that NO MAN seeks after God.

    Evildoers, David says, never learn, never call on God & only see people as a means to their own ends.

    Psalm 54:5   —  (David Prays)   —  Slander

    David simply asks God to return the evil upon those who slander him.

    Psalm 55:15   —  (David Prays)   —  General Reference

    David simply says that evil dwells among his enemies.

    Psalm 59:2   —  (David Prays)   —  General Reference

    David asks God to deliver him from evildoers.

    Psalm 64:2,5   —  (David Prays)   —   Multiple sins

    David asks God to hid him from evildoers who (a) use their tongues as swords, (b) use their words to inflict death, (c) ambush the innocent, (d) do not fear in harming others, (e) encourage one another in doing evil, (f) make plans to commit evil and (g) boast about their plans.

    Psalm 71:4   —   (Prayer)   —  General Reference

    The psalmist prays for deliverance from evil and cruel men.

    Psalm 73:7   —  The wicked & arrogant    —  General Reference

    Asaph states that the evil conceit of men’s minds knows no limits.

    Psalm 92:7,9   —  (Speaking of God)   —  General Reference

    The psalmist praises the works of God by remembering that evildoers, though they flourish & prosper, will certainly face a day of judgment.

    Psalm 94:4,16   —  General   —  Boasting and arrogance

    Evildoers are arrogant & full of boasting, crushing others by oppression.

    The psalmist then says that were it not for the Lord, evildoers would have overwhelmed him.

    Psalm 97:10   —  (A call to the Righteous)   — 

    The psalmist reminds us that if we love the Lord, we should hate evil.

    Psalm 101:4,8   —  (David vows)   — 

    David vows to the Lord to walk blameless before Him.  This includes keeping away from faithless men who are seen as evil.

    Psalm 109:5,6,20 — (David Prays) —

    David asks God to install an Evil man over his accuser to pay in kind for the evil his accusers lay upon him.

    Psalm 119:101, 115 — (Unknown writer extols God’s word) —

    The writer of this Psalm proclaims that in striving to serve and obey God, he has kept his foot from every evil path.  He likewise states that evildoers should stay far away from him so he might obey God’s commands.

    Psalm 125:3,5 — (Unknown writer looks forward to God’s Kingdom) —

    The writer looks ahead to when God will reign & tells us that evil will be banished from the land & will not survive to influence the righteous.

    Psalm 139:20  —  (David Prays)  —  Misusing God’s Name —-

    David says that men of Evil intent misuse the name of the Lord and speak of God as though He may be manipulated.

    Psalm 140:1,2  —  (David prays for protection)  —

    David asks God to protect him from the violence of evil men, who make evil plans and wage war.

    Psalm 141:4-5,9 —  (David Prays) —

    David asks God to protect his heart from being drawn into doing Evil.  that he might not fall to wicked deeds.  He likewise prays for protection from the evil actions of his enemies.

    Proverbs 2:14 — All men —   General Reference

    Wisdom will protect you from men who delight in doing Evil, who actually rejoice in it.

    Proverbs 3:7 —  All men  —  General call to repentance

    Do not be wise in your own eyes (proud), fear the Lord & turn away from evil.

    Proverbs 4:14,16,27  —  General  —  General Reference

    The teacher warns us that we should not walk as evil men do, and tells us that evil men cannot sleep till they have done evil.  We should make every effort to stay away from doing evil.

    Proverbs 5:22  —  General  —  General Reference

    A wicked man is trapped by his evil deeds.  His sin holds him bound.

    Proverbs 6:14  —  General  —  Deceit & dissension

    A scoundrel / villain plots evil with deceit on his mind.  He speaks with a corrupt mouth and he causes divisions everywhere he goes.   —–>  Disaster will overtake him when he does not expect it.

    Proverbs 6:18  —  (God Despises…)  —  General Reference… but…

    Famous passage about that which God finds abominable.  #5 Feet that rush to do evil. 

    Proverbs 8:13  —  (Wise Counsel)  —  General Reference… but…

    To “fear” God is to hate evil.  As defined by God as pride, arrogance, evil behavior & perverse speech.

    Proverbs 10:23  —  Fool  —  Evil actions / manners

    Only a fool takes pleasure in evil conduct.

    Proverbs 10:29  —  General  —  General Reference

    Ruin shall come upon those who do evil.

    Proverbs 11:6  — Unfaithful men  — Evil desires

    Unfaithful men are trapped by their evil desires.

    Proverbs 11:19  —  General  —  General Reference

    Death ultimately comes upon those who pursue or chase after evil.

    Proverbs 11:27  —  General  —  General Reference

    Those who chase evil find it.

    Proverbs 12:12  —  Wicked men  —  General Reference

    Wicked men lust after the plunder of evil men.

    Proverbs 12:13  —  Evil Men  —  Sinful talk

    Sinful talk traps evil men.

    Proverbs 12:20  —  General  —  Deceit

    Those who plan evil practice deceit.

    Proverbs 13:19  —  Fools  —  General Reference

    A Fool hates turning from evil.

    Proverbs 14:16  —  Wise Men  —  General Reference

    Wise men fear God & shun evil.

    Proverbs 14:19  —  General  —  General Reference

    Evil men will bow in the presence of the righteous.

    Proverbs 14:22  —  General  —  General Reference

    Those who plot evil go astray.

    Proverbs 15:28  —  General  —  General Reference

    Evil pours out of the mouth of wicked men & the wicked give no thought to their responses.

    Proverbs 16:6  —  (Advice for avoiding Evil)

    The fear of the Lord helps a man avoid evil.

    Proverbs 16:17  —  (Advice for avoiding Evil)

    If we guard our way, we avoid evil.

    Proverbs 16:27  —  General  —  General Reference

    A scoundrel plots evil and those who wink their eye or purse their lips (look this up later….) are intent on evil.

    Proverbs 17:4,11,13  —  General  —  General Reference

    Wicked men listen to evil advice & set their hearts toward rebellion.  Those who pay back evil for good shall find that evil will always follow them.

    Proverbs 19:28  —  General  —  General Reference

    Hard to understand — the mouth of the wicked gulps down evil — need to review later.

    Proverbs 20:8  —  (Spoken about God???)

    When the king sits on the throne of judgment, he eliminates evil with his eyes.  Does this speak of God on Judgment day?

    Proverbs 20:30  —  (Literal or Figurative?)

    Blows and wounds purge evil.

    Proverbs 21:10  —  General  —  General Reference

    A wicked man craves evil & his neighbors gain no relief from his scheming.

    Proverbs 21:15  — General  — General Reference

    Evildoers despise justice, it terrifies them.

    Proverbs 21:27  —  (God rejects evil men’s sacrifices)

    God looks upon a man’s intentions when they offer sacrifices.  A wicked mans offerings are detestable to God.

    Proverbs 24:8  —  General  —  Scheming to do evil

    A man who plots evil shall be known as a schemer.  Foolish schemes are sinful

    Proverbs 24:19-20  —  (A reminder to the righteous)

    Do not worry because of evil men or be envious of them, for they have no future hope.

    Proverbs 26:23  —  General  —  General Reference

    I honestly have to admit that I don’t understand this one.  Here’s my attempt:  A man’s lips may profess Christ, but God looks not to a man’s lips but upon his evil heart.

    Proverbs 28:5  —  General  —  General Reference

    Justice is lost on evil men, they just don’t get it.  Righteous men understand fully what God’s justice means.

    Proverbs 28:10  —  General  —  General Reference

    A curse rests upon those who would lead righteous men down evil paths.

    Proverbs 29:6  —  General  —  General Reference

    An evil man will be trapped by his own sin.  It will judge him before God.

    Proverbs 30:32  —  General  —  General Reference

    Those who plan evil, or who play the fool by self-exaltation — ought to be ashamed of their actions, for by stirring up anger they produce strife.

    Ecclesiastes 4:3  —  (Unborn men are blessed)

    Those who have not been born are blessed for having not known evil.

    Ecclesiastes 5:13,15  —  General  —  Greed

    It is seen as evil to hoard wealth.  Those who strive to hoard do so to their own detriment.
    All that a man strives to gain will not gain him anything when he dies.  This, too, is viewed as evil.  It all comes down to man’s greed.

    Ecclesiastes 6:1  —  General  —  General Reference

    Though a man be given wealth, power & fame, he gains no enjoyment from them for he lacks God in his life.  This is viewed as evil.

    Ecclesiastes 9:3  —   Key Passage

    The hearts of men are full of evil.

    Ecclesiastes 9:12  —  General  —  Evil Times

    Men are trapped by the evil times that fall upon them.

    Ecclesiastes 10:5  —  (The evil of band leadership)

    When fools are put in charge the lands suffer.  This is viewed as evil.

    Ecclesiastes 12:14  —  (God will judge all men)

    God will bring all men to judgment for all that they do, good or evil.

    Isaiah 1:4  —  Israel  —  Evildoers

    All of Israel is viewed as evildoers, given over to corruption — they have all forsaken God.

    Isaiah 1:13  — (God speaking to Israel)

    God calls Israel’s offerings meaningless, their incense as detestable & their religious holidays as evil.

    Isaiah 1:16  —  (Before the great proclamation of grace comes a call to repentance…)

    Take your evil deeds out of my sight, God says, & stop doing wrong.  Vs 18 goes on to say “Come let us reason together”, so the invitation of grace is always preceded by the call to repentance.

    Isaiah 5:20  —    Key Passage   Judgment is pronounced upon those who call evil as good & good as evil.

    When evil becomes the way of a mans life so that he defends his sin, when a man justifies his actions AGAINST what God has said and decides that evil things are preferable to righteousness — then judgment comes.

    Isaiah 13:11  —  Key Passage  God will judge men for their evil & their sins.

    God states bluntly that the world will be punished for it’s evil, the wicked for their sin  — drawing comparison between sin & evil.  Specifically mentioned are arrogance & pride.

    Isaiah 26:10  —  Key Passage

    Even though God shows or extends grace to the wicked, they do not learn what righteousness is, but they continue to do evil, ignoring God.

    Isaiah 29:20  —  General  —  General Reference

    All who have an eye for evil will face judgment.  Specifically mentioned are those who bear false testimony against innocent men.

    Isaiah 31:2  —  General  —  General Reference

    Judgment will fall upon & against the wicked & evildoers, no matter where they run to hide.

    Isaiah 32:6  —  The fool  — General Reference

    An interesting verse which states that a fools mind is busy with evil, practicing ungodliness & spreading error concerning God.  He leaves those who listen to him empty and without God.

    Isaiah 32:7  —  The Scoundrel  —  General Reference

    The scoundrel’s methods are wicked & his schemes are evil.

    Isaiah 33:15  —  The Righteous

    Those deemed “righteous”… “Shut their eyes against contemplating evil.”

    Isaiah 55:7  —  General  —  General Reference

    A call for men to turn from their ways, specifically for evil men to forsake his thoughts and turn to God for mercy.

    Isaiah 56:2  —  The Righteous  —  General Reference

    A blessing is extended to men who strive to uphold the law, keep the sabbath & keep his hand from doing evil.

    Isaiah 57:1  —  The righteous  —  General Reference

    Men do not ponder the death of the righteous, who are spared from evil & who rest in peace upon their death.

    Isaiah 59:4,6-7,15  —  General  —  General Reference

    No one looks at himself honestly to see their evil.
    God looks at our thoughts & sees only evil thoughts, he looks at our deeds and sees only evil deeds & if anyone seeks to turn away from their sin & evil, people mock them & scorn them.   For this reason God will not listen to men’s prayers. (start of the chapter, Isaiah 59:2)

    Isaiah 65:12  —  (God speaking to Israel & all)  —  General Reference

    Those who seek God will be blessed, but he who does evil in God’s sight displeases God & will be destined for Judgment.

    Isaiah 66:4  —  (God speaking)  —  General Reference

    Companion verse of Isaiah 65:12 saying virtually the same thing.

    Jeremiah 2:19  —  (A Warning to one and all)

    Evil (in a general sense) comes upon us when we forsake the Lord.

    Jeremiah 3:5  —  (God speaking)  —  General Reference

    Though our mouths call upon God, we yet pursue evil.  In this is our hypocrisy shown.

    Jeremiah 3:17  —  (God speaking)

    Our hearts will one day no longer stubbornly pursue evil.

    Jeremiah 4:4  —  (Warning)

    A call to repentance saying that “The evil (we) have done” will bring upon us the wrath of God.

    Jeremiah 4:14  —  Jerusalem  (Call to repentance)

    Jerusalem is called to wash their hands of evil & to turn from their wicked hearts.

    Jeremiah 4:22  —  God’s people  —  General Reference

    We do not know God, we are like children who only want to play in the mud.  We are senseless, not knowing anything about the way of doing good — only how to do evil.

    Jeremiah 5:28  —  House of Jacob  —  Evil deeds

    Our evil deeds know no limits & will bring God’s wrath.

    Jeremiah 7:24,26  —  Israel  —  General Reference

    Though God displayed mercy on Israel as He brought them out of Egypt — they still chose to follow the stubborn desires of their evil hearts.
    As Israel progressed, their evil increased all the more, as did their stubbornness.

    Jeremiah 7:30  —  Israel  —  Idolatry

    Idolatry is evil in the eyes of God.

    Jeremiah 8:3  —  Israel  —  General Reference

    God states bluntly that Israel is an evil nation.

    Jeremiah 11:8  —  Israel  —  General Reference

    Israel did not listen or pay attention to God’s ways or calling, but instead they followed the stubbornness of their evil hearts.

    Jeremiah 11:17  —  Israel  —  idolatry

    God’s judgment will fall upon Israel for the evil of their idolatry.

    Jeremiah 13:23  —  Key Passage  General  —  General Reference

    Man can no better change his ways from doing evil to doing good than a leopard can willingly change his spots or an African change the color of his skin.

    MARK THIS:  God grants us repentance, otherwise we only do evil all the time in all that we do.

    Jeremiah 16:12  —  Israel  —  Disobedience

    Disobedience is the bent of our stubborn evil hearts.

    Jeremiah 18:8,10,11,12  —  (God’s promise to those who repent)

    God says that if we repent of our evil then He will extend mercy and grace.  But to the nation that does evil in God’s sight, then God’s judgment comes.
    So while God calls men to repent of their evil ways, men will stubbornly pursue the evil in their hearts.

    Jeremiah 18:20  —  General  —  General Reference

    Jeremiah prays saying that the Good he does is repaid with evil .

    Jeremiah 21:12  —  (God speaking)  —  General Reference

    God says that the evil we do, if continued, will bring about His wrath like an unquenchable fire.   An early reference to hell.

    Jeremiah 23:2,10  —  (God speaking)  —  False Shepherds

    God declares that because men had led His people astray, He will punish them for this evil.
    They have abused their positions to gain power for themselves.

    Jeremiah 23:14  —  (God speaking)  —  False shepherds

    Carrying through the whole chapter, these false shepherds not only sin, but encourage others to do so as well.

    Jeremiah 23:22  —  KEY VERSE!!!

    God speaks saying that the aim of true shepherds is to turn men from their evil ways and deeds.  This is the role of a true man of God.

    Jeremiah 25:5  —  (God speaking)

    God has previously spoken via the prophets of old, calling all men everywhere to turn from their evil ways & deeds.

    Jeremiah 26:3  —  (God speaking)  A call to repentance

    God tells Jeremiah to preach repentance in the hopes of reaching some & turning them away from their evil ways & not bring about the coming wrath due their evil deeds.

    Jeremiah 32:30,32  —  (God speaking)  Israel, including Judah  —  Idolatry

    God says that the people have only done evil to provoke Him to anger by their idolatry.

    Jeremiah 44:3  —  (God speaking)  —  Idolatry.

    For burning incense & worshiping false gods, God says Israel & Judah was judged as evil. 
    In Verse 4, God says He sent the prophets to call Israel away from this “detestable thing that I hate.”

    Jeremiah 52:5  —  Zedekiah  —  General Reference

    King Zedekiah is said to have done evil in the eyes of God.

    Jeremiah 52:31  —  This reference is merely to someone named “Evil-Merodach” who became king over Babylon.

    Ezekiel 3:18-20  —  (God speaking)  —  General Reference

    God calls Ezekiel to raise his voice against the sinfulness of Israel, to call them away from their evil ways.

    Ezekiel 6:9  —  (God speaking) Future reference to Israel’s repentance.

    At some point in the future, Israel will see their sinfulness & will hate themselves for the evil that they have done.

    Ezekiel 11:2  —  (God speaking)  —  General Reference

    General reference on the actions of Israel’s leaders.

    Ezekiel 13:22  —  (God speaking)  —  General Reference

    God speaks judgment against false prophets for how they have led people astray by not calling men away from their evil ways.

    Ezekiel 20:43-44  —  (God speaking) Future reference

    At some point in the future, Israel will see their sinfulness & will hate themselves for the evil of their ways.

    Ezekiel 30:12  —  (God speaking)  —  General Reference

    God simply says that He will turn Egypt over to Babylon who will then turn the land over to evil men.

    Ezekiel 33:11  —  (God speaking)  —  against sinful men

    God says that he takes no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but rather that they would turn from their evil ways.  This echos 2 Peter 3.

    Ezekiel 33:13  —  (God speaking)  —  General Reference

    God says that if a righteous man starts to pridefully trust in his own righteousness & does evil –  He will die for the evil he has committed.

    Ezekiel 33:15  —  (God speaking)  —  General Reference

    God says if a wicked man turns from his evil ways & continues in this way of repentance — that man shall surely live and not die.

    Ezekiel 33:18  —  (God speaking)  —  General Reference

    A reaffirming of the above two statements.

    Ezekiel 36:31  —  (God speaking)  —  General Reference

    God says that the House of Israel will remember their former evil ways, wicked deeds & detestable practices & they will mourn and be ashamed for their actions.

    Ezekiel 38:10  —  (God speaking)  —  Unprovoked violence

    God calls “evil” the scheming to provokingly attack the villages living in peace in order to plunder & loot them.

    Daniel 11:27  —  (God revealing a future event)  Two future kings

    Simply put: 2 future kings will have their hearts intent on evil for what they plan to do.

    Hosea 7:2  —  (God speaking)

    God states that Israel’s sins & evil are always before Him & that He always remembers them.  Specifically mentioned in this passage is thievery, robbery, deceit, adultery & drunkeness.

    Hosea 7:15  —  (God speaking)  —  General Reference

    God speaking of how men do not turn to Him, but rather plot evil against Him.

    Hosea 10:9  —  (God speaking)  —  General Reference

    God references the judgement of a former nation of evildoers.

    Hosea 10:13  —  Law of sowing & reaping

    God says that they have sown wickedness & will reap evil from it, all because they sought to be independent of God.

    Amos 3:13  —  General  —  KEY VERSE  Echos Isaiah 5:20

    Amos says we all should seek after good & not evil, that we ought to hate evil and love good & make sure the two are not perverted in the judicial system.

    Amos 6:3  —  A warning to Israel

    God warns Israel that they are no better than the nations He judged & they are only forestalling the day of evil that is coming.

    Amos 9:4  —  (God speaking)

    God asks if He is as men that He should pursue His enemies with evil intent.

    Jonah 3:8,10  —  The King of Nineveh calls for repentance & God responds

    In one of the most beautiful displays of God’s response to a repentant heart, Nineveh repents of it’s evil & god relents of the judgment pronounced beforehand.

    Micah 2:1  — everyone  —  General Reference

    Those who plot evil, who seek to plan & scheme sin & iniquity, shall see the wrath of God come against them.

    Micah 3:2,4  —  (God speaking) Against the leaders & rulers of Israel

    God declares judgment against rulers, leaders & false prophets who hate good & love evil.  When calamity comes upon them & they call out to God to rescue them, God will not listen to their cries because of the evil they have done in the name of God in leading people astray.

    Micah 7:3  —  everyone  —  General Reference

    Micah, lamenting over the state of Israel, says of men that our hands are skilled at working evil.  Rulers, judges & the powerful all seek the blood of their fellow man.  From this comes the warning:   Put no hope in your fellow man, look solely to God to be your salvation.

    Nahum 1:11  —  Against Nineveh

    Unsure of how this reference plays out.   Someone is coming from Nineveh who plots against God.  Who are they and what evil they plot is unrevealed.

    Habakkuk 1:13  —  KEY VERSE  —  Habbakkuk  speaking about God.

    God’s eyes are too pure to look upon evil, & He cannot & will not tolerate the sinful ways of men.

    Zechariah 1:4  —  (God speaking)  Israel  —  General Reference

    God says to Israel that they should not be like their forefathers who would not leave their evil ways & evil practices, who would not listen to what God had said.

    Zechariah 7:10  —  (God speaking) Israel  —  Thinking Evil

    God warns Israel that they should not think evil of each others in their hearts.

    Zechariah 8:17  —  (God speaking) Judah  —  General Reference

    God tells Judah not to plan evil against their neighbors.

    Malachi 2:17  — KEY VERSE!!! (God speaking)  —  Calling evil “good”

    God says He has grown weary by our saying “God accepts everyone despite what they do.”  & “God is pleased with all men, good or evil.”

    God is not pleased with all men, nor does He accept all men as they are!!

    Malachi 3:15  —  (God speaking)  —  Arrogance

    Israel says to themselves, “What point is there to serving God when the arrogant & evildoers do as they please & are seemingly blessed and prosperous?”

    Malachi 4:1  —  (God speaking)  Judgment comes

    Simply put:  the day of the Lord will come upon the arrogant & evildoers & not one of them will remain in God’s coming kingdom.

    What an interesting ending to the Old Testament comments on Evil.  Men grow weary of doing right and following God … and judgement follows.  It’s the same thing we see today and preach as Christians — God’s day of Judgment comes, repent while you have the opportunity.  Turn from your evil ways, stop calling “Good” what God has labelled evil, and seek God’s mercy while you still can.

    As for what is “Evil”, thus far

    • Unprovoked violence
    • murder
    • kidnapping
    • rape
    • prostitution
    • lust
    • adultery
    • idolatry
    • greed
    • arrogance / pride
    • deceit
    • lieing
    • being a false witness
    • dissension
    • theft
    • sexual promiscuity 
    • rebellion (both towards God and towards one’s parents)
    • boasting
    • sorcery
    • divination
    • witchcraft
    • mediums
    • slander
    • refusing to obey civil authority
    • and finally leaving God to follow after idols. 
    • As well, leading people away from God is seen as evil, as are all people who simply ignore God.

    Evil is seen in

    • our thoughts
    • our actions
    • our deeds
    • our hearts
    • our vows
    • our imagination
    • and our speaking. 
    • Some people are even seen as plotting evil as they try to sleep!

    In short, nearly everything that men do naturally seems to be pictured or called “Evil” by God at some point.  Have an affair, you’ve committed evil and you’re an evildoer.  Lie…. same thing.  Boast…. same thing.  On and on it goes.   God calls things evil which men naturally like to do, follow, pursue and act on.  This is why we’re called to repent — the Greek word for which means “to change one’s mind, opinion or thoughts about things.”   When our very thoughts are pictured as “evil” — repentance (as defined by Greek) makes sense (Isaiah 55:7; 59:4,6-7,15; Jeremiah 23:22).

    We seem to live in an age when everything that God calls “Evil”, we deem a virtue worthy of esteem, praise and pursuit.  We seem to be where the Israelites were near the end of the Old Testament — Malachi 2:17, read my footnote above.

    Here’s a link to the first draft of this post which was started in June of last year.  I had originally privatized the post as I wasn’t finished, now that I am I do so that you may see (A) that I’ve been working on this for quite a long while and (B) that there have been changes along the way…. including even the title.

Comments (9)

  • This is interesting, but to really give yourself a more robust methodology, you would do yourself well to gain a familiarity with the biblical languages.  The question of evil here is not just what do we see in the english, but why would some uses of a word sometimes translated as “evil” be translated differently?  We monolinguists often miss that there are not really perfect synonyms between languages.  I’d challenge you instead to start delving into learning what the Hebrew concept of evil was, the hebrew concept of good, and also to find out if the words that were translated as “evil” were all the same word, were different words, and why some words are not translated as evil even if they are at other times? 

    Learning what the Bible says often requires us to go and do some more serious digging that we have prepared ourselves for.  What you’ve got here is an excellent first step, but there is more to be learned, if you are willing to stick to it.

  • Before we get to us human, a foundation of where it choice we make to do evil started somewhere and the Bible along with the above text present, some some of us a foundation for truth.

    If all of your life you have acted wisely by generally obeying your parents and God, you are at a distinct disadvantage in one important area: righteousness by faith. There is nothing like tumbling into a terrible sin to teach the important lesson that we have nothing of ourselves that will save us. We may be better than most of those we know, but we are absolutely lost unless we depend completely on Jesus’ life, death and resurrection on our behalf

    What are some of the symbolism in the Bible that teaches us of our need for a Savior

    Isaiah 64:1-9

    Oh, that you would rend the heavensA)’> and come down,B)’>
        that the mountainsC)’> would tremble before you!
    As when fire sets twigs ablaze
        and causes water to boil,
    come down to make your nameD)’> known to your enemies
        and cause the nations to quakeE)’> before you!
    3 For when you did awesomeF)’> things that we did not expect,
        you came down, and the mountains trembledG)’> before you.
    4 Since ancient times no one has heard,
        no ear has perceived,
    no eye has seen any God besides you,H)’>
        who acts on behalf of those who wait for him.I)’>
    5 You come to the help of those who gladly do right,J)’>
        who remember your ways.
    But when we continued to sin against them,
        you were angry.K)’>
        How then can we be saved?
    6 All of us have become like one who is unclean,L)’>
        and all our righteousM)’> acts are like filthy rags;
    we all shrivel up like a leaf,N)’>
        and like the wind our sins sweep us away.O)’>
    7 No oneP)’> calls on your nameQ)’>
        or strives to lay hold of you;
    for you have hiddenR)’> your face from us
        and have given us overS)’> to our sins.

    8 Yet you, Lord, are our Father.T)’>
        We are the clay, you are the potter;U)’>
        we are all the work of your hand.V)’>
    9 Do not be angryW)’> beyond measure, Lord;
        do not remember our sinsX)’> forever.
    Oh, look on us, we pray,
        for we are all your people.Y)’>

    Psalm 14:2-3

    2 The Lord looks down from heavenA)’>
        on all mankind
    to see if there are any who understand,B)’>
        any who seek God.C)’>
    3 All have turned away,D)’> all have become corrupt;E)’>
        there is no one who does good,F)’>
        not even one.

    Psalm 14:7

    7 Oh, that salvation for Israel would come out of Zion!A)’>
        When the Lord restoresB)’> his people,
        let Jacob rejoice and Israel be glad!


  • @tau_1 - @acomfortingcolloquy - The aim of this was to see what SPECIFICALLY does the bible label as “Evil” —- not to delve into the meaning of evil, but precisely what ACTS are labeled so.  We like to pretend that “EVIL” is some grand epic thing that covers nations, acts of utter desolation, genocide, that sort of thing — while the bible actually labels as “EVIL” those things which we like to pretend are not…. daily things like lieing, lusting, cheating, stealing.  When you see it all spelled out like I have done so above — it kind of pulls the blinders we conveniently cover our eyes with and shows us that we are “Evil” in all that we do…. not merely what Hitler did to the Jews, but me, myself, and the rest of us in those daily sins we commit and like to pretend are “OK”. 

    There is an aim to this post (and it’s companion post on the New Testament which hopefully won’t take me 9 months to prepare…..) in that I will be using these “conclusions” (that is to say: Which A-C-T-I-O-N-S does God label as evil..) as the basis for a very pointed and very poignant post that will likewise conclude another series I started nearly 2 years ago.   It’s taken nearly 2 years of study just to be able to tackle one particular verse…. which will all come to a head in due time.

    As to my knowledge of languages —- I know Greek, I did some study in that years back in order to read some of the Church Fathers works a bit better.  Right now I am a missionary in Taiwan and trying my best to learn traditional Chinese so that I might reach this Buddhist nation for our Lord.  Hebrew — will probably never get past my lexicons and study notes.  (If you pull back to this post — Scripture Abuse, Part 4: Where is your Heart — you’ll see I did a word study on the Hebrew word LEV.  I do sometimes get around to it…. but Chinese really has to be my focus presently.

    As well — let me say that there’s nothing wrong in studying English scripture — so long as you are honestly seeking to understand and know what Christ meant and how it applies to your life in our calls to live obediently to His calling on us.  One thing I do honestly know — scripture will always likewise support scripture….. so knowing more than 5 common memory verses actually serves to improve ones overall understanding.   For the record, I have 20% of the New Testament and 5% of the Old Testament memorized, and the whole of the Bible topically memorized for quick reference.   I think this shows up often in my use of scripture throughout my posts…. like the one linked above.

    Tau — you and I go around and round sometimes, but I do understand where you’re coming from more often than not.  I will say this though — not everything in Scripture is meant for symbolic interpretation.   If God honestly has a message for us — and I fully believe He does — It would not make sense for him to hide it in esoteric double-speak which requires decoder rings and special interpretative methodology.   God spoke through Jesus — His message was pretty clear.  I think that the rest of the Scripture will yield to a likewise clear message if read without the cloud of mysticism which more often OBSCURES the true meaning of something in favor of fancy rhetoric and flowery re-interpretation.

    In conclusion (to you both) — God has said —- all we need to do (more often than not) is simply listen…. even if it is only in English or in my wife’s case, Traditional Chinese.   God’s smart like that, ya think?  And he’s used some pretty godly men in the past to bring His message to us in all manner of language and tongue…. so that we might all likewise praise Him for His glory and grace.   All praise to Jesus for all that He’s done in helping us to know the Truth.

  • Fascinating.

    Maybe this is an oversimplification of an *obviously* complex subject. Your research is thorough, but what gets me the most is this paragraph:
    In short, nearly everything that men do naturally seems to be pictured or called “Evil” by God at some point.  Have an affair, you’ve committed evil and you’re an evildoer.  Lie…. same thing.  Boast…. same thing.  On and on it goes.   God calls things evil which men naturally like to do, follow, pursue and act on.  This is why we’re called to repent — the Greek word for which means “to change one’s mind, opinion or thoughts about things.”   When our very thoughts are pictured as “evil” — repentance (as defined by Greek) makes sense (Isaiah 55:759:4,6-7,15Jeremiah 23:22).

    I mean I understand why you would think that essentially our natural existence is evil, but the word evil can easily be replaced with “sinful”. So, I suppose, yes, evil, but more clearly sinful. And the fundamental piece in Christianity is that Christ “came to call sinners”. He came to save sinners…and if everyone is sinful, and everyone is evil…Christ came to save everyone.

    Dwelling on that fact that we are or are not evil gives way to a certain amount of scrupulosity that is unhealthy. The focus should primarily be on the fact that we are saved, right? The sacrament of Penance. Confession. We are saved.
    Granted, I am Catholic, and I use the New American Bible. So maybe I’m…different. But…I don’t think I am.

  • Evil is really pretty simple concept.  It is anything that doesn’t come from God and have God at the center.  Not a hard concept to understand, just a really hard one to keep 24/7.

  • @nixxyknox - I recommend you look at Matthew 7:11, Matthew 15:19 and John 3:19 to find out Jesus thoughts on mankinds condition….. it’s rather inescapable when He says it so bluntly.   Bear in mind that He’s speaking generally of all men.  In the first instance He’s even speaking to a full crowd of people.  That all said, we’re talking about something which God has defined very meticulously through Scripture —- you may not like my conclusion, but it’s solidly based upon actual verses that do conclusively state these things are evil.   Our salvation is not through our efforts, but rather through what Christ did on the cross… and that comes only to those who believe.   Jesus used a very specific instance as a picture of his sacrificial death —- Just as Moses lifted up the serpent in the dessert, so must the Son of Man be lifted up. (John 3:14)   That instance, if you will remember, granted safety from snakebites ONLY TO THOSE WHO WOULD LOOK UP TO THE SERPENT.   Jesus salvation is not for everyone — only those who will believe in him.  That is a clear connection between the two instances. 

    God saved you by his grace when you believed. And you can’t take credit for this; it is a gift from God. Salvation is not a reward for the good things we have done, so none of us can boast about it  (Ephesians 2:8-9 New Living Translation)

    @jwfarns - Interesting thought, but if you will backtrack to the two ORIGINAL posts (Linked at the start of the whole study) you’ll understand why I felt it necessary to delve into this.   Men don’t like to think themselves evil — fight against it in fact.  There’s a reason I’m doing this and it will all come clear when I get to the final part of this.  I’ve another post that will follow which will draw heavily from this study…. and will not be well accepted I’m sure.

  • @JulieMillerFan - Don’t misunderstand or think I’m simple or believe I think you are doing something unnecessary.  It is just that at the end of the day, when you come to the final conclusion, evil, at it’s core, is putting yourself on God’s throne, rebelling against the One who made you and sustains you, without Whom you would have no life or breath or being.  That is the essence of evil, and every evil deed and thought flows out of that rebellion.

  • @jwfarns - I honestly recommend that you backtrack to my original post linked here.  Honestly.   I think the discussion via comments will help you understand why this was necessary. 

    BTW: I didn’t disagree with you — I thought your original comment was quite well stated.  But the aim of this was the see SPECIFICALLY what the Bible labels as evil because people don’t care to think of themselves that way.  I agree with what you said, but I needed a broader stroke brush paint to enlarge the picture from a sketch (your statement) to a painting — whereas the scriptures themselves represent the masterpiece (showing every nuance and detail in proper perspective).   Does that make sense?

  • @JulieMillerFan - Not to put too fine a point on it, but I don’t really need to understand why you feel this is necessary.  It is enough that God placed that burden on your heart.  That is reason enough and need not be explained.  May your endeavors be blessed.

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