Psa 97:10 You who love Jehovah, hate evil;
My least favourite Western society observance is fast approaching – Hallowe’en. Last year I wrote about some of the history and practices associated with that day. Trick or Treat
When the subject comes up in conversation and I explain why I don’t observe that day I frequently get the response, “Well, it’s just a day for kids to dress up and have some harmless fun”. Is that why the most recent Walmart flyer has advertised costumes for sale that include a t-shirt with a huge butcher knife sticking out of a gory wound in the back? Harmless? Fun??
I like to dress up, eat goodies and have fun too, but surely we can do these things without promoting the things of evil. As Christians, we have been commanded to avoid all things that are or have the appearance of evil.
1Th 5:22 Abstain from every appearance of evil.
A dire warning is given to those who would twist God’s truth and make evil things seem harmless (as in Halloween)and good things seem bad.
Isa 5:20 Woe to those who call evil good and good evil; who put darkness for light and light for darkness; who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter!
But what, exactly is evil? What may be evil to one person may not seem evil to another. Christians themselves have been divided over the opinions of what is or is not evil. (dancing, playing cards, movies etc.)
Evil must be an important subject to understand as it is mentioned over 600 times in the Bible!
The first use of the term “evil” in the Bible is found in the book of Genesis.
Gen 2:9 and Jehovah God causeth to sprout from the ground every tree desirable for appearance, and good for food, and the tree of life in the midst of the garden, and the tree of knowledge of good and evil.
The word “evil” in the above verse comes from a root word which literally means to spoil by breaking to pieces and figuratively means to make or be good for nothing. The following terms are also used to describe/define the word evil: adversity, affliction, calamity, grief, harm, hurt, mischief, sorrow, trouble, wretchedness, and wrong.
That’s a whole list of unhappy things that God wanted His creation to avoid having to experience or know about! Unfortunately, that all came to a bitter end when Adam and Eve disobeyed God and ate of the forbidden fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil.
Gen 2:17 … you shall not eat of the tree of knowledge of good and evil. For in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die. (what died was their “spirit” life and the close connection with God – a topic for another post)
Notice how disobeying God and knowing evil lead to death. It only took one generation for evil to manifest itself as jealousy, anger and murder when Cain killed his brother, Abel.
1Jn 3:12 not as Cain who was of the evil one, and killed his brother. And for what did he kill him? Because his own works were evil, and his brother’s things were righteous.
God says that the imagination of Man’s heart is evil from his youth! Gen.8:21
Evil continued to multiply to such an extent that God regretted having ever made Man!
Gen 6:5,6 And Jehovah saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. And Jehovah repented that He had made man on the earth, and He was angry to His heart.
“Only evil continually”! Yikes! That was at the time of Noah – I don’t think that the majority of Mankind is any better now, thousands of years later!
Ecc 9:3 This is an evil among all things that are done under the sun, that there is one event to all. Yea, also the heart of the sons of men is full of evil, and madness is in their heart while they live, and after that they go to the dead.
The apostle John said that “all the world lies in evil”. 1Jn 5:19
What does God consider as being “evil”?
Jdg 2:11 And the sons of Israel did evil in the sight of Jehovah, and served Baals.
Jdg 2:12 And they forsook Jehovah, the God of their fathers, who brought them out of the land of Egypt.
Joh 3:19,20 And this is the condemnation, that the Light has come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than the Light, because their deeds were evil. For everyone who does evil hates the Light, and does not come to the Light, lest his deeds should be exposed.
Evil happens when mankind forsakes God, disobeys His commandments and rejects the Light, who is Jesus Christ, the son of God.
When Man forsakes God, he turns to evil ways.
Mar 7:21,22 For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, murders, thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lasciviousness, an evil eye, blasphemy, pride, foolishness:…
When we forsake and disobey God and chase after evil, there are serious consequences.
Jdg 2:15 Wherever they went out, the hand of Jehovah was against them for evil [they had done], as Jehovah had said, and as Jehovah had sworn to them. And they were greatly distressed.
In the book of Judges, it is written over and over again how the sons of Israel forsook God and did evil and God withdrew His blessings and protection and then Israel suffered at the hands of their enemies.
Jdg 13:1 And the sons of Israel did evil again in the sight of Jehovah. And Jehovah delivered them into the hands of the Philistines forty years.
Psa 34:16 The face of Jehovah is against those who do evil, to cut off the memory of them from the earth.
Pro 11:7 When a wicked man dies, his hope shall perish; and the hope of evil ones shall be lost.
Pro 11:19 So righteousness tends to life; but one pursuing evil, it is to his own death.
Pro 17:13 Whoever rewards evil for good, evil shall not depart from his house.
Isa 3:11 Woe to the wicked! For the evil doing of his hand will be done to him.
Rom 2:9 tribulation and anguish upon every soul of man who has worked out evil;
1Pe 3:12 For the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous, and His ears open to their prayers. But the Lord’s face is against those who do evil.
God turns against those who do evil. Evil mankind has no hope. Evil leads to death. Evil begets more evil. The evil shall suffer tribulation and anguish. The evil shall be lost and destroyed. This is not a pretty picture!
And if you think that you can fool God, hide from him and escape judgement, think again!
Pro 15:3 The eyes of Jehovah are in every place, beholding the evil and the good.
Ecc 12:14 For God shall bring every work into judgment, with every secret thing, whether it is good, or whether evil.
God sees, God knows and He will give judgement and pass sentence.
Jer_1:16 And I will pronounce My judgments against them regarding all their evil, those who have forsaken Me, …
Pro 24:20 for there shall not be a hereafter to the evil; the lamp of the wicked shall be put out.
Joh 5:29 and shall come forth, those who have done good to the resurrection of life, and those who have practiced evil to the resurrection of condemnation.
Those who have practiced evil will be condemned to eternal destruction!
As Christians, we are told to “1Th 5:22 Keep from every form of evil“. I believe that when we, as Christians, “go along with” things like Halloween, we are not “keeping from every form of evil”. As Christians, we must stand separate and apart from those things which celebrate, promote or encourage evil.
Pro 4:14,15 Enter not into the path of the wicked, and go not into the way of evil. Avoid it; do not pass by it; turn from it, and pass on!
Pro 24:1 Do not be jealous of evil men, nor desire to be with them.
1Co 15:33 Do not be deceived; evil companionships corrupt good habits.
2Co 6:14,15 Do not keep company with those who have not faith: for what is there in common between righteousness and evil, or between light and dark? And what agreement is there between Christ and the Evil One? or what part has one who has faith with one who has not?
3Jn_1:11 Beloved, do not imitate the bad, but the good. He who does good is from God, but he who does evil has not seen God.
Instead, we, as Christians are told to do the following:
Psa 34:14 Depart from evil and do good; seek peace and pursue it.
Pro 16:17 The way of the upright is to turn away from evil; he who keeps his way guards his way.
Pro 3:7 Do not be wise in your own eyes; fear Jehovah and depart from evil.
1Pe 3:10,11 For he that wants to love life and to see good days, let him restrain his tongue from evil, and his lips from speaking guile. Let him turn aside from evil and do good. Let him seek peace and pursue it.
Adam and Eve were commanded not to eat from the tree of knowledge of good and evil. Using the free will with which God created them, they chose to disobey. We have also been given choices.
Deu 30:19, 20 I call Heaven and earth to record today against you. I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing. Therefore, choose life, so that both you and your seed may live, so that you may love Jehovah your God, and that you may obey His voice, and that you may cling to Him. For He is your life and the length of your days, …
And this is my prayer for you:
2Co 13:7 But I pray to God for you not to do evil, none.
Mat 6:13 And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil. For Yours is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever. Amen.