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Wit and Wisdom of Gateway Church Athens GA

As we begin our new church life … so too a new blog!

Why Evil is Evil

The Bible has a broad definition of evil.  Evil is anything that flows not from loving God but rebelling against Him.  Randy brings an interesting point to light.  Good can exist without evil, but evil can’t exist without good.  Metal can exist just fine without rust, but rust can’t exist without metal.

I can get my arms around this analogy.  It makes sense in many ways.  Evil is corruption.  Look at this definition:

corrupt: adjective
 
1.    Guilty of dishonest practices, as bribery; lacking integrity; crooked: a corrupt judge.
2.    Debased in character; depraved; perverted; wicked; evil: a corrupt society.
3.    Made inferior by errors or alterations, as a text.
4.    Infected; tainted.
5.    Decayed; putrid.

Do any of those definitions strike a familiar cord?  I have worked with plant material my entire professional career.  I understand corruption and decay.  I’ve made a good living over the last 40 years dealing with the results of terrestrial corruption.  We all have seen the damage disease can do to people, animals and crops.  Some human diseases are insidious such as AIDS, meningitis and cancer.  These can kill quickly or slowly, but kill they do.  Recently on the news was the tragic death of several teenagers from a “brain eating amoeba”.  All they did was go swimming in a lake.  One boy simply used a nasal wash from tap water and was infected.  They all died within days.

We just dealt with hurricane Irene.  Joplin and Tuscaloosa were laid low by tornados a few months ago.  Earthquakes in Japan and Tsunamis in Indonesia killed hundreds of thousands.

Rom 8:19  For [even the whole] creation (all nature) waits expectantly {and} longs earnestly for God’s sons to be made known [waits for the revealing, the disclosing of their sonship]. For the creation (nature) was subjected to frailty (to futility, condemned to frustration), not because of some intentional fault on its part, but by the will of Him Who so subjected it–[yet] with the hope that nature (creation) itself will be set free from its bondage to decay {and} corruption [and gain an entrance] into the glorious freedom of God’s children.  We know that the whole creation [of irrational creatures] has been moaning together in the pains of labor until now.

God warned Adam that the day he sinned would be the day he would die.  He died spiritually as soon as he ate and although he lived for many years physically, the die was cast and sin was turned loose on mankind and the earth.

Gen 2:17 But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil {and} blessing and calamity you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die. 

We learned in Genesis chapter 3 Adam started the entire process of corruption by doing the one thing God told him not to do, thus he committed the first sin.  Sin then turned corruption loose and after so many years, we see it’s bitter fruit all around us.

Gen 3:17-19 And to Adam He said, Because you have listened {and} given heed to the voice of your wife and have eaten of the tree of which I commanded you, saying, You shall not eat of it, the ground is under a curse because of you; in sorrow {and} toil shall you eat [of the fruits] of it all the days of your life. Thorns also and thistles shall it bring forth for you, and you shall eat the plants of the field. In the sweat of your face shall you eat bread until you return to the ground, for out of it you were taken; for dust you are and to dust you shall return.

Two kinds of evil: Primary and Secondary.

Moral wrong doing is primary evil.  Suffering as a result of primary evil is secondary evil.  I saw an excellent example of both types of evil today on one tv show.  A man was coming home from work and discovered his wife had been brutally killed at home.  (Sounds much like David Jansen in “The Fugitive”).  The police went to work and figured this man had killed his wife.  Circumstantial evidence “proved it” and he spent 25 years doing time for a crime he didn’t commit.  Then DNA evidence proved his innocence and he was released from prison.  (He isn’t bitter, because during his time in the pen, he became a Christian and God did a work in his life!).  The primary evil of murder collected an innocent man in it’s wake and produced the secondary evil of a wrongful conviction.

Jesus said in John 16:33In the world you have tribulation {and} trials {and} distress {and} frustration …  It’s no wonder.  We live on a planet whose forces are corrupted and we are surrounded by people who are corrupted through a sinful nature.  Yes, I think tribulation, stress and frustration are going to be more the rule of the day than the exception!

If you can objectively stand up and take a “50,000 foot view” you can see that sin has had the opportunity to multiply, hide, grow and expand almost limitlessly for thousands of years.  We exist daily in an environment where we are in constant contact with both primary and secondary evil.

It’s simply God’s abundant Grace that keeps the whole thing together and keeps us alive!

Col 1:17 And He Himself existed before all things, and in Him all things consist (cohere, are held together).

Heb 1:3 He is the sole expression of the glory of God [the Light-being, the out-raying or radiance of the divine], and He is the perfect imprint {and} very image of [God’s] nature, upholding {and} maintaining {and} guiding {and} propelling the universe by His mighty word of power. When He had {by offering Himself} accomplished {our} cleansing of sins {and} riddance of guilt, He sat down at the right hand of the divine Majesty on high.

Next week: Rebel Forces attempt an overthrow of the kingdom!

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