What does the Bible say about evil?
What is evil in the Bible? Evil is anything that is opposite to the holy character of God. Anything contrary to the will of God is evil. There is no denying that evil exists in the world. Skeptics use evil to disprove God.
However, one of the ways that we know God is real is that there is evil. It’s a moral issue.
We all have a sense of right and wrong. If there is a moral standard, then there is a transcendent moral truth giver.
Christian quotes about evil
“You cannot make men good by law.” C.S. Lewis
“When a man is getting better he understands more and more clearly the evil that is still left in him. When a man is getting worse he understands his own badness less and less.” C.S. Lewis
“The confession of evil works is the first beginning of good works.” Augustine
“Good can exist without evil, whereas evil cannot exist without good.”
“Satan is ever seeking to inject that poison into our hearts to distrust God’s goodness – especially in connection with his commandments. That is what really lies behind all evil, lusting and disobedience. A discontent with our position and portion, a craving from something which God has wisely held from us. Reject any suggestion that God is unduly severe with you. Resist with the utmost abhorrence anything that causes you to doubt God’s love and his lovingkindness toward you. Allow nothing to make you question the Father’s love for his child.”
“The truest definition of evil is that which represents it as something contrary to nature. Evil is evil because it is unnatural. A vine which should bear olive-berries – an eye to which blue seems yellow, would be diseased. An unnatural mother, an unnatural son, an unnatural act, are the strongest terms of condemnation.” Frederick W. Robertson
“There are a hundred men hacking at the branches of evil to every one who is striking at the roots of evil.” Henry Ward Beecher Henry Ward Beecher
“I can know if I truly fear God by determining if I have a genuine hatred of evil and an earnest desire to obey His commands.” Jerry Bridges
Why is there evil in the world according to the Bible?
Why does God allow evil? Man has free will to do what he desires, but man will only do what the nature of his heart allows him to do. One thing that we can’t deny is that man is evil. God has chosen not to program us like robots. God wants us to love Him with a genuine love. However, the problem is that man hates God and is inclined to do evil. People like marijuana even though smoking weed is a sin. People practice voodoo even though voodoo is evil. The world loves pornography even though porn is a sin. Cheating in a relationship is a badge of honor for men.
Why is there evil? There is evil because you and I are in this world. God allows it out of His patience and grace, waiting for us to repent. 2 Peter 3:9 “The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.”
Most of us won’t think of ourselves as evil because we have been comparing ourselves with others. We need to compare ourselves with God and His holy standard and then you will start to notice your need for a Savior. We think evil things against our closest friends. We have bad motives behind our greatest acts. We have done things that we wouldn’t tell our closest friends. Then, God says, “Be holy. I demand perfection!”
1. Genesis 6:5 “And GOD 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.”
2. Matthew 15:19 “For from the heart come evil thoughts, murder, adultery, all sexual immorality, theft, lying, and slander.”
3. John 3:19 “This is the judgment, that the Light has come into the world, and men loved the darkness rather than the Light, for their deeds were evil.”
4. Galatians 5:19-21 “When you follow the desires of your sinful nature, the results are very clear: sexual immorality, impurity, lustful pleasures, idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God.”
5. Ephesians 2:2 “You used to live in sin, just like the rest of the world, obeying the devil–the commander of the powers in the unseen world. He is the spirit at work in the hearts of those who refuse to obey God.”
6. Jeremiah 17:9 “The human heart is the most deceitful of all things, and desperately wicked. Who really knows how bad it is?”
Evil and God’s justice
God hates evil and evildoers. Psalm 5:5 “You hate all evildoers.” If man is truly evil just like Scripture says and what our hearts teach us, then how is God to respond? Are we deserving of reward or punishment? Heaven or hell? When someone does a crime, the law says that they must be punished. We want the criminal to be punished. We even cheer for the criminals to be punished. We boldly say things like, “don’t do the crime if you can’t do the time.” Well what about if we are the criminals?
We’ve sinned against the holy God of the universe and we deserve His wrath. The Bible calls God a judge. Just like we have earthly judges we have a heavenly Judge. We scream things like, “God is a forgiving God” but where is the justice? We act as if God is beneath our earthly judges. Blasphemy! It’s all about Him!
God is greater and He is holy which means a far greater punishment. A good judge will sentence a criminal and an evil judge will not. When we start telling ourselves that God must forgive and He doesn’t send people to hell, then we are saying that God is evil and He does not know justice.
Martin Luther King once said, “To ignore evil is to become an accomplice to it.” How can God ignore our evil and not be evil Himself? He has to punish us and He can’t forgive you. His justice has to be satisfied because He is a good holy Judge. God is the standard and His standard is perfection and not what we as sinful human beings think the standard should be. Evildoers must be punished, so where does that leave us?
7. Psalm 92:9 “For surely your enemies, LORD, surely your enemies will perish; all evildoers will be scattered.”
8. Proverbs 17:15 “He that justifieth the wicked, and he that condemneth the just, even they both are abomination to the LORD.”
9. Psalm 9:8 “And He will judge the world in righteousness; He will execute judgment for the peoples with equity.”
10. Proverbs 6:16-19 “There are six things the Lord hates, seven that are detestable to him: haughty eyes, a lying tongue, hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked schemes, feet that are quick to rush into evil, a false witness who pours out lies and a person who stirs up conflict in the community.”
11. Proverbs 21:15 “When justice is done, it is a joy to the righteous but terror to evildoers.”
Evil doers come to God on our own terms.
If you try to get right with God on your own you will fall flat on your face. The Bible teaches us that God is far from the wicked. It doesn’t matter if you pray, go to church, give, etc. If your sins have not been atoned for, you are guilty before God. You can’t bribe a good judge. In fact, bribing only results in a greater punishment. The good and honest judge will not turn a blind eye.
12. Proverbs 21:27 “The sacrifice of an evil person is detestable, especially when it is offered with wrong motives.”
13. Proverbs 15:29 “The LORD is far from the wicked, but he hears the prayer of the righteous.”
14. Amos 5:22 “Even though you offer up to Me burnt offerings and your grain offerings, I will not accept them; And I will not even look at the peace offerings of your fatlings.”
Bible verses about overcoming evil
How do evil people get saved? Ff not by works, how do we get saved? Are we all going to hell because we can’t meet the requirements? The honest answer is yes. However, I want you to realize how much God loves you. God would still be loving if He sent the entire human race to hell. We are not worthy of Him. God loved you so much that He came down in the form of man to satisfy His requirements. Never in the history of the universe has a good judge ever said, “I’m going to take your death penalty and switch places with you.” That’s what God did.
The holy judge of the universe came down in the form of man and took your place. Jesus was fully man to live the life that man couldn’t and He was fully God because only God is holy. His blood had to be shed. You can’t repay Him. Repaying Him is like saying, “Jesus is not enough. I need Jesus and something else.” Blasphemy! Jesus drunk the full extent of God’s wrath and not one drop was left. Jesus went on the cross and He bore your sins, He was buried, and on the third day He was resurrected defeating sin and death!
Now evil people can be reconciled to the Father. Not only have they been reconciled through Christ, but they have been changed. They are no longer seen as evil but they are seen as saints before God. How must one be saved? Repent and trust in Christ alone for salvation. Ask Christ to forgive you. Believe that Christ has taken away your sins. We can now go before the Lord with total confidence. Jesus is my claim to Heaven and He is all that I need!
15. John 14:6 Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Me.”
16. Colossians 1:21-22 “Once you were alienated from God and were enemies in your minds because of your evil behavior. But now he has reconciled you by Christ’s physical body through death to present you holy in his sight, without blemish and free from accusation.”
17. Romans 5:10 “For if, when we were enemies of God, we were reconciled to Him through the death of His Son, how much more, having been reconciled, shall we be saved through His life!”
18. 2 Corinthians 5:17 “Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come.”
Has God given you a new heart to hate evil? What do I have to do to maintain my salvation? Nothing. Those in Christ have been set free. Salvation is a free gift. However, evidence that you have been saved is that you will hate evil. Sin bothers us now. God has given believers a new heart so that they will fear hurting Him. Our love for God causes us to turn from evil. Believers want to live a life pleasing to God. God is greater than evil. Evil is only for the moment, but Christ is everlasting. Christians choose Christ because He is better.
19. Jeremiah 32:40 “I will make with them an everlasting covenant, that I will not turn away from doing good to them. And I will put the fear of me in their hearts, that they may not turn from me.”
20. Proverbs 8:13 “To fear the LORD is to hate evil; I hate pride and arrogance, evil behavior and perverse speech.”
21. Psalm 97:10 “Hate evil, you who love the Lord, Who preserves the souls of His godly ones; He delivers them from the hand of the wicked.”
22. Proverbs 3:7 “Do not be wise in your own eyes; Fear the LORD and turn away from evil.”
23. Ezekiel 36:26 “I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh.”
Becoming a Christian will change your life
If Christ’s Word means nothing to you, then that is strong evidence that you are not saved.
I’m not referring to sinless perfection or a works based salvation, both are foolish. I’m referring to evidence that you have been regenerated by the power of the Holy Spirit. These are not my words. It’s scary to know that one day God is going to say to some professing Christians, “Depart from me. I never knew you.”
He’s going to say this to pastors, people who sat in church, missionaries, worship leaders, people who had tears in their eyes, etc. You can have tears in your eyes because you got caught but you never change nor do you desire to. There is a worldly sorrow that leads to death. You can have a head knowledge of the gospel but has the heart changed? Even the demons know the gospel. Does sin burden you now?
Christians can indeed struggle with sin, but struggling Christians want to be more and we pray for help. We cling to Christ knowing that He is all we have. Our hope lies in Him alone. The problem is that many people use Christ as an excuse to live in sin. Many people have the godly outward appearance without the inward change. You can fool man, but you can’t fool God. Jesus said, “you must be born again.”
24. Matthew 7:21-23 “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and in your name perform many miracles?’ Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!”
25. Luke 13:27 “And he will answer, ‘I tell you, I do not know where you are from. Depart from me, all you evildoers.”