Thoughts to Ponder

Good versus Evil

Isaiah 5:20
            Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil;
            Who substitute darkness for light and light for darkness;
            Who substitute bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter!  [NASB-U]

There are many people who are calling evil good and good evil these days. Some do so because they are evil themselves, others do so because they are ignorant or naïve.

An example of this is the abortion and capital punishment debate. One side says that abortion on demand should be a woman's right. They claim that the unborn baby isn't a human being and therefore shouldn't be afforded any rights at all. That is one side of the debate, but hand in hand with it, is the capital punishment debate. These same people are most often against capital punishment.

So let me put this debate in the proper perspective, these people have no problem killing an unborn child who has done nothing, who is innocent, but they do have a problem punishing those who have taken a human life.

I am not saying that it is impossible for good people to disagree on some of these issues, but I am saying that by God's yardstick those who claim these things are calling good evil and evil good.

Psalm 139:13 For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother's womb. [NIV]

Luke 1:41 When Elizabeth heard Mary's greeting, the baby leaped in her womb, and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit. [NIV]

These two passages show two things. First that God is the one who creates life in a mother's womb and second that God calls the unborn child a baby; a life.

Genesis 9:6 "Whoever sheds the blood of man, by man shall his blood be shed; for in the image of  God  has God made man." [NIV]

Exodus 21:12-17 "Anyone who strikes a man and kills him shall surely be put to death. [13] However, if he does not do it intentionally, but God lets it happen, he is to flee to a place I will designate. [14] But if a man schemes and kills another man deliberately, take him away from my altar and put him to death. [15] "Anyone who attacks his father or his mother must be put to death. [16] "Anyone who kidnaps another and either sells him or still has him when he is caught must be put to death. [17] "Anyone who curses his father or mother must be put to death." [NIV]

As these passages show, God not only supports capital punishment, He requires it in some cases. Now let me quickly explain that we no longer live under Old Testament Law, but the basic principles remain the same. We are still made in God's image and our lives are to be honored and those who deliberately take a human life should be put to death. There are a couple reasons for this, first is punishment. The person who deliberately takes a life should pay for that life with his life. Of course I am not speaking of times of war or a Police Officer in the performance of his duties, I am talking about murder. Secondly the punishment of the person who murders is a deterrent. Many people will claim that it isn't, but I will agree with God:

Deut. 21:21 Then all the men of his town shall stone him to death. You must purge the evil from among you. All Israel will hear of it and be afraid. [NIV]

When people support the killing of the innocent in their mother's wombs and sparing of the guilty, who have shed a man's blood, they are calling evil good and good evil.

Child discipline is another area where people can have legitimate disagreements, but it is important to know what God says. It is very popular today to teach that a parent should never touch their children, but rather use non-physical punishments such as time outs, or take something away from them so that they understand from an intellectual stand point that what they did was wrong.

All you have to do is look around society and you can see that this is hogwash!! But you don't have to look at the Petri dish of society, all you have to do is look at God's word and you will know that this will result is disaster. And has done so in the past 30 years.

Proverbs 13:24 He who spares the rod hates his son, but he who loves him is careful to discipline him. [NIV]

Proverbs 22:15 Folly is bound up in the heart of a child, but the rod of discipline will drive it far from him. [NIV]

Proverbs 23:13-14 Do not withhold discipline from a child; if you punish him with the rod, he will not die. [14] Punish him with the rod and save his soul from death. [NIV]

Proverbs 29:15 The rod of correction imparts wisdom, but a child left to himself disgraces his mother. [NIV]

No one is speaking about beating a child, but discipline in love is not beating and it is not wrong. Even Christians ignore God's word and bring mountains of woe upon themselves and their children.

The paid professionals call good (spanking and discipline) evil and call evil (allowing a child to 'find' their own way) good.

This calling evil good and good evil is all around us. It appears in many subtle ways and many not so subtle ways. Let me give you an example straight from the news. I am not trying to defend anyone, since I don't have the whole story, but that is exactly my point.

How many of you remember when that man over powered the female Deputy Sheriff in Atlanta killed her and took her weapon and killed the judge and the court reporter and in the end had killed 4 people? If you watched the news you heard him described as the "alleged" killer. There was no alleged about it, it was caught on video tape and there were eye witnesses to the killings.

Now also think about the video of the New Orleans Police Officers struggling with the man on the street. How was that described? It was a Police beating. Or the beating of an unarmed man by the Police. No, alleged, no presumption of being innocent, not even a cursory, let's wait until we get the facts.

Or how about what is also in the news the past week; the riots in France. How have you heard them described? I will tell you what I have heard. The rioters are "young men" or they are "disaffected youth." They are "angry and frustrated" but you almost never hear that they are Muslims. Nor have you likely heard this:

"Cyber-Rioting In France: 'We Aren't Going to Let Up! Are You Stupid?,'" from Der Spiegel:

But just as the Internet has proven useful to those wanting to vent their frustration and anger at the violence enveloping France, others -- those involved in the violence -- have found the Internet a useful organizational tool. Plans for further attacks have made their appearances in different blogs -- like that from "Brahim." "Nice work people," he writes. "The cops are petrified of us, everything must burn, starting Monday, the operation 'Midnight Sun' starts, tell everyone else, rendezvous for Momo and Abdul in Zone 4 ... jihad Islamia Allah Akhbar."

User "Samir's" message is just as threatening. "You don't really think that we're going to stop now? Are you stupid? It will continue, non-stop. We aren't going to let up. The French won't do anything and soon, we will be in the majority here."

Why won't the media tell us the truth? Simple, they want to pretend that Islam is a peaceful religion. They willfully call good evil and evil good. The sad part is that Christians are all too willing to just stick their heads in the sand and pretend that none of this matters. Well it does matter. God says woe to those who call evil good and good evil. I would add this, woe to those who listen to those who call good evil and evil good and ignore it.

E-Mail Ralph

These devotionals are written by Ralph Dettwiler, and reflect his views.

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November 2005