10 Biblical Facts About Evil
Christian counselor and speaker Debbie W. Wilson shares 10 facts about evil, found in 10 Bible verses, so you can find protection against the schemes of the Enemy.
"I don't like her." I was probably seven years old when I told my mother my reservations about a woman who was going to be my aunt. My uncle had brought his striking fiancée to meet the family. She smiled, but something about her said "Beware."
When your child tells you she doesn't like someone, how do you respond? Or when you feel wary about someone in a respected position, what do you do? Often Christian parents tell their child, "Now sweetie, we're supposed to love everyone." They incorrectly believe that love means trusting.
Jesus told us to be discerning. When He warned against casting pearls before swine, He was talking about unsafe people, not livestock (Matthew 7:6). God has placed internal radar within us. Sometimes we talk ourselves out of it because discernment feels judgmental and mean. Yet those warnings protect us.
After my uncle married his bride, her true nature came out. She was as cruel and beautiful as Snow White's stepmother. My mother remembered my words and remarked that children see what adults often miss. I've thought about that when, as an adult, I've tried to talk myself out of uneasy feelings. I wanted to like the people I met. Trusting feels nice. Believing the best sounds kind. Yet, over the years, my instincts have usually proven right.
God's Word helps us built a sound alarm system that warns and protect us. His Spirit activates that alarm as we walk with Him. Our radar may not spell out what's wrong. It just tells us to be careful. We don't have to understand the why. We just need to heed it.
Don't let the fear of being judgmental, narrow, or foolish stop you from being discerning.
Here are 10 verses on evil to boost your internal alarm system.
1. Recognizing evil protects us from harm.
"Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good" (Romans 12:9 NIV).
Are you surprised that love hates evil?
Evil here means harmful in effect. Some things may be evil for me but not for you. Credit cards help some people keep track of their spending, but they tempt others to overspend and create bondage to debt. Do certain people, types of entertainment, or situations cause you to stumble or suffer? Then, as The Message puts it, "Run for dear life from evil; hold on for dear life to good."
2. The Good Shepherd protects His sheep from evil.
"Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me" (Psalm 23:4 NIV).
God is stronger than any evil power. Staying close to our Shepherd keeps us safe.
3. God brings good out of the evil sent against you.
"Even though you planned evil against me, God planned good to come out of it" (Genesis 50:20 GW).
Joseph's brothers sold him into slavery. God used his brothers' evil schemes to get Joseph into Egypt where he could save the nation of Israel and through them the bloodline of Jesus! When God allows evil to touch us, we can trust that He is using it for His glory and our eternal good.
4. We overcome evil with good.
"Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good" (Romans 12:21 NIV).
The natural human response is to return evil for evil. But the Bible says the way we overcome evil is to do good. Otherwise we become like those who are evil. When we do good, God becomes our avenger and settles the score.
5. We should not fret when people do evil.
"Do not fret because of those who are evil or be envious of those who do wrong; for like the grass they will soon wither, like green plants they will soon die away" (Psalm 37:1-2 NIV).
God has those who do evil on a leash. Focus on Him instead of on them.
6. Anger can lead to evil doing.
"Let go of anger, and leave rage behind. Do not be preoccupied. It only leads to evil" (Psalm 37:8 GW).
Fretting doesn't make things better. It only causes us to act our pain and to lash out against others.
7. Fear of God teaches us to hate evil.
"All who fear the Lord will hate evil. Therefore, I hate pride and arrogance, corruption and perverse speech" (Proverbs 8:13 NLT).
Hating evil protects us from harmful associations and destructive attitudes.
8. Remember who is behind evil.
"For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms" (Ephesians 6:12 NIV).
When we remember we are in a spiritual battle we will use spiritual weapons of faith and forgiveness. These weapons protect us from becoming pawns in our enemy's hands.
9. The Lord saves us from evil attacks.
"The Lord will rescue me from every evil attack and will bring me safely to his heavenly kingdom. To him be glory for ever and ever. Amen" (2 Timothy 4:18 NIV).
Jesus never leaves us to battle alone. He is our hiding place and protection. He will strengthen us to endure our battles and to come through them with victory.
10. Pray for protection from evil.
"And don't let us yield to temptation, but rescue us from the evil one" (Matthew 6:13 NLT).
The Lord's Prayer reveals giving into temptation puts us in the claws of the evil one. Jesus said the devil comes "to steal, kill, and destroy" (John 10:10). This is good reason to follow our Lord's instructions to pray we won't fall into temptation and under the power of evil.
Please pray with me:
Dear heavenly Father, thank You for being our Shepherd and for sympathizing with us in our weaknesses. Please guide us and grant us the strength and desire to resist temptation, to hate evil, and to overcome evil with good. Protect us from deception and every form of evil. Thank You for hearing our prayer, in Jesus' name.
Drawing from her personal walk with Christ, twenty-four years as a Christian counselor, and decades as a Bible teacher, Debbie W. Wilson speaks and writes to help people discover relevant faith. She is the author of Little Women, Big God and Give Yourself a Break. Share her journey to refreshing faith at her blog debbieWwilson.com.
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