Evil, Good and Good, Evil
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! (Isaiah 5:20)
It is Satan’s practice to convince people that what
God calls good is actually evil and what God declares evil is, in fact, good.
Satan persuaded Adam and Eve that their disobedience, rather than their
obedience, would guarantee a full life. They believed him and immediately began
to experience sin’s consequences! Despite the absurdity of Satan’s logic, he
continues to deceive people into doubting what God has clearly said.
King Saul sought Samuel’s affirmation for the
sacrifice he had offered, even though he had acted in direct disobedience to
God’s command (1 Sam. 15:13). Ananias and Sapphira expected praise from the
early church for their offering, though they were blatantly lying (Acts
5:1–11). An Amalekite soldier sought David’s gratitude for killing Saul, God’s
anointed king (2 Sam. 1:1–16).
We, too, will face the temptation to call something
good that God has declared wicked. We may be persuaded that we can accomplish
more good by lying than by telling the truth. We may claim that we are
mobilizing Christians to pray for someone in sin when, in fact, we are
spreading gossip. We may assert that we are following God’s will in our job
when, in fact, we are striving to pursue our own ambitions. We will also be
tempted to call evil that which God declares is good. God says it is good to
love our enemies, yet we might decide our task is to hold them responsible for
It is so important to hold ourselves accountable to
God’s word. God does not need us to find exceptions for His commands. He
requires our obedience.