We all feel the effects of evil in some way, don’t we? Unfortunately, some of us have felt the effects of evil more acutely than others. Sin and the brokenness that pervades the world because of sin often result in pure evil, the opposite of goodness and flourishing. Sometimes it can even feel like God is not present in our suffering. Does God allow us to suffer because He’s mad at us? Why does He allow suffering at all? We have so many questions to which answers can feel so elusive. But Scripture has much to say about evil, and God cares for us as we struggle amidst the brokenness of creation.
The Nephilim were on the earth in those days, and also afterward, when the sons of God came in to the daughters of man and they bore children to them. These were the mighty men who were of old, the men of renown.
The LORD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every intention of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.
As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good, to bring it about that many people should be kept alive, as they are today.
But whenever the judge died, they turned back and were more corrupt than their fathers, going after other gods, serving them and bowing down to them. They did not drop any of their practices or their stubborn ways.
1 Samuel 12:20
And Samuel said to the people, “Do not be afraid; you have done all this evil. Yet do not turn aside from following the LORD, but serve the LORD with all your heart.”
1 Samuel 15:23
For rebellion is as the sin of divination,
and presumption is as iniquity and idolatry.
Because you have rejected the word of the LORD,
he has also rejected you from being king.
1 Kings 14:9
but you have done evil above all who were before you and have gone and made for yourself other gods and metal images, provoking me to anger, and have cast me behind your back,
2 Chronicles 29:6
For our fathers have been unfaithful and have done what was evil in the sight of the LORD our God. They have forsaken him and have turned away their faces from the habitation of the LORD and turned their backs.
And the Lord said to Satan, ‘Behold, all that he has is in your hand. Only against him do not stretch out your hand.’ So Satan went out from the presence of the Lord.
As I have seen, those who plow iniquity
and sow trouble reap the same.
Behold, the wicked man conceives evil
and is pregnant with mischief
and gives birth to lies.
“Do not drag me off with the wicked,
with the workers of evil,
who speak peace with their neighbors
while evil is in their hearts.
Give to them according to their work
and according to the evil of their deeds;
give to them according to the work of their hands;
render them their due reward.
Because they do not regard the works of the LORD
or the work of his hands,
he will tear them down and build them up no more.”
“Keep your tongue from evil
and your lips from speaking deceit.
Turn away from evil and do good;
seek peace and pursue it.”
“The face of the Lord is against those who do evil,
to cut off the memory of them from the earth.”
“Affliction will slay the wicked,
and those who hate the righteous will be condemned.”
“He plots trouble while on his bed;
he sets himself in a way that is not good;
he does not reject evil.”
“For the evildoers shall be cut off,
but those who wait for the LORD shall inherit the land.”
“You give your mouth free rein for evil,
and your tongue frames deceit.”
“Why do you boast of evil, O mighty man?
The steadfast love of God endures all the day.
Your tongue plots destruction,
like a sharp razor, you worker of deceit.
You love evil more than good,
and lying more than speaking what is right.
You love all words that devour,
O deceitful tongue.”
“For I was envious of the arrogant
when I saw the prosperity of the wicked.”
“O you who love the Lord, hate evil!
He preserves the lives of his saints;
he delivers them from the hand of the wicked.”
“Keep steady my steps according to your promise,
and let no iniquity get dominion over me.”
“The Lord will keep you from all evil;
he will keep your life.
The Lord will keep
your going out and your coming in
from this time forth and forevermore.”
“Do not let my heart incline to any evil,
to busy myself with wicked deeds
in company with men who work iniquity,
and let me not eat of their delicacies!”
“Be not wise in your own eyes;
fear the Lord, and turn away from evil.
It will be healing to your flesh
and refreshment to your bones.”
“For they cannot sleep unless they have done wrong;
they are robbed of sleep unless they have made someone stumble.”
“Do not swerve to the right or to the left;
turn your foot away from evil.”
“A worthless person, a wicked man,
goes about with crooked speech,
winks with his eyes, signals with his feet,
points with his finger,
with perverted heart devises evil,
continually sowing discord;
therefore calamity will come upon him suddenly;
in a moment he will be broken beyond healing.”
“The fear of the Lord is hatred of evil.
Pride and arrogance and the way of evil
and perverted speech I hate.”
“Hatred stirs up strife,
but love covers all offenses.”
“The way of the LORD is a stronghold to the blameless,
but destruction to evildoers.”
“Deceit is in the heart of those who devise evil,
but those who plan peace have joy.”
“One who is wise is cautious and turns away from evil,
but a fool is reckless and careless.
A man of quick temper acts foolishly,
and a man of evil devices is hated.
The simple inherit folly,
but the prudent are crowned with knowledge.
The evil bow down before the good,
the wicked at the gates of the righteous.
The poor is disliked even by his neighbor,
but the rich has many friends.
Whoever despises his neighbor is a sinner,
but blessed is he who is generous to the poor.
Do they not go astray who devise evil?
Those who devise good meet steadfast love and faithfulness.”
“The highway of the upright turns aside from evil;
whoever guards his way preserves his life.”
“A worthless man plots evil,
and his speech is like a scorching fire.”
“This is an evil in all that is done under the sun, that the same event happens to all. Also, the hearts of the children of man are full of evil, and madness is in their hearts while they live, and after that they go to the dead.”
“Remember also your Creator in the days of your youth, before the evil days come and the years draw near of which you will say, ‘I have no pleasure in them’.”
“Wash yourselves; make yourselves clean;
remove the evil of your deeds from before my eyes;
cease to do 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!”
“For the fool speaks folly,
and his heart is busy with iniquity,
to practice ungodliness,
to utter error concerning the LORD,
to leave the craving of the hungry unsatisfied,
and to deprive the thirsty of drink.
As for the scoundrel—his devices are evil;
he plans wicked schemes
to ruin the poor with lying words,
even when the plea of the needy is right.”
“Their feet run to evil,
and they are swift to shed innocent blood;
their thoughts are thoughts of iniquity;
desolation and destruction are in their highways.”
“If at any time I declare concerning a nation or a kingdom, that I will pluck up and break down and destroy it, and if that nation, concerning which I have spoken, turns from its evil, I will relent of the disaster that I intended to do to it. And if at any time I declare concerning a nation or a kingdom that I will build and plant it, and if it does evil in my sight, not listening to my voice, then I will relent of the good that I had intended to do to it. Now, therefore, say to the men of Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem: ‘Thus says the LORD, Behold, I am shaping disaster against you and devising a plan against you. Return, every one from his evil way, and amend your ways and your deeds.’
But they say, ‘That is in vain! We will follow our own plans, and will every one act according to the stubbornness of his evil heart.’”
“He reveals deep and hidden things;
he knows what is in the darkness,
and the light dwells with him.”
“Do not be like your fathers, to whom the former prophets cried out, ‘Thus says the Lord of hosts, Return from your evil ways and from your evil deeds.’ But they did not hear or pay attention to me, declares the Lord.”
“Thus says the Lord of hosts, Render true judgments, show kindness and mercy to one another, do not oppress the widow, the fatherless, the sojourner, or the poor, and let none of you devise evil against another in your heart.”
“Blessed are you when others revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account.”
“Let what you say be simply ‘Yes’ or ‘No’; anything more than this comes from evil.”
“And lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil.”
“You brood of vipers! How can you speak good, when you are evil? For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks. The good person out of his good treasure brings forth good, and the evil person out of his evil treasure brings forth evil.”
“Then he left the crowds and went into the house. And his disciples came to him, saying, “Explain to us the parable of the weeds of the field.” He answered, “The one who sows the good seed is the Son of Man. The field is the world, and the good seed is the sons of the kingdom. The weeds are the sons of the evil one, and the enemy who sowed them is the devil. The harvest is the end of the age, and the reapers are angels.”
“And he said, ‘What comes out of a person is what defiles him. For from within, out of the heart of man, come evil thoughts, sexual immorality, theft, murder, adultery, coveting, wickedness, deceit, sensuality, envy, slander, pride, foolishness. All these evil things come from within, and they defile a person.’”
“Blessed are you when people hate you and when they exclude you and revile you and spurn your name as evil, on account of the Son of Man!”
“The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.”
“For everyone who does wicked things hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his works should be exposed.”
“I do not ask that you take them out of the world, but that you keep them from the evil one.”
“but for those who are self-seeking and do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness, there will be wrath and fury. There will be tribulation and distress for every human being who does evil, the Jew first and also the Greek, but glory and honor and peace for everyone who does good, the Jew first and also the Greek.”
“Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, to make you obey its passions.”
“For I do not do the good I want, but the evil I do not want is what I keep on doing. Now if I do what I do not want, it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells within me.”
“Let love be genuine. Abhor what is evil; hold fast to what is good.”
“Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.”
“I appeal to you, brothers, to watch out for those who cause divisions and create obstacles contrary to the doctrine that you have been taught; avoid them.”
1 Corinthians 13:6–7
“It does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.”
1 Corinthians 15:33
“Do not be deceived: ‘Bad company ruins good morals.’”
“Be angry and do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger, and give no opportunity to the devil.”
“Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places. Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm.”
1 Thessalonians 5:15
“See that no one repays anyone evil for evil, but always seek to do good to one another and to everyone.”
1 Thessalonians 5:21–22
“But test everything; hold fast what is good. Abstain from every form of evil.”
1 Timothy 6:10
“For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evils. It is through this craving that some have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many pangs.”
2 Timothy 4:18
“The Lord will rescue me from every evil deed and bring me safely into his heavenly kingdom. To him be the glory forever and ever. Amen.”
“Take care, brothers, lest there be in any of you an evil, unbelieving heart, leading you to fall away from the living God.”
“Let no one say when he is tempted, ‘I am being tempted by God,’ for God cannot be tempted with evil, and he himself tempts no one.”
“Therefore put away all filthiness and rampant wickedness and receive with meekness the implanted word, which is able to save your souls.”
“And the tongue is a fire, a world of unrighteousness. The tongue is set among our members, staining the whole body, setting on fire the entire course of life, and set on fire by hell. For every kind of beast and bird, of reptile and sea creature, can be tamed and has been tamed by mankind, but no human being can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison.”
“For where jealousy and selfish ambition exist, there will be disorder and every vile practice.”
1 Peter 2:16
“Live as people who are free, not using your freedom as a cover-up for evil, but living as servants of God.”
1 Peter 3:9
“Do not repay evil for evil or reviling for reviling, but on the contrary, bless, for to this you were called, that you may obtain a blessing.”
1 Peter 3:12–13
“‘For the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous,
and his ears are open to their prayer.
But the face of the Lord is against those who do evil.’
Now who is there to harm you if you are zealous for what is good?”
1 John 5:19
“We know that we are from God, and the whole world lies in the power of the evil one.”
by Hannah Anderson
Winner of the 2018 TGC Book Award for Christian Living “And God saw that it was good…” Look out over the world today, it seems a far cry...
Sign up for resources delivered to your inbox weekly
Sign up for learning delivered to your inbox weekly