It exists. And since the day God put humans on the Earth, He has tried to protect us from it.
He even warned Adam.
“And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, ‘Of every tree of the garden you may freely eat; but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die.’” Genesis 2:17
But Adam and Eve ate and awareness of Evil and its consequences entered our lives.
I’ve had my share of evil in my life. From childhood through my adult years it seems as though it was [is] everywhere. But recently, I’ve become aware that evil is something that was not in His Heart.
For the past few weeks I’ve been studying the Book of Jeremiah using a Biblical Study written by Melissa Spoelstra (click here for more info). Last week’s lessons were on the heart and it was then as I was reading my assigned chapters, God showed me (kind of warned me) that evil wasn’t and isn’t in His heart or mind.
God’s Word says, “The human heart is the most deceitful of all things and desperately wicked” (Jeremiah 17:9a). No one really knows it but God and He searches hearts and examines their secret motives.
It’s no surprise that in today’s world, that statement is true (for the most part); especially these past few weeks. From escaped convicts to shootings to Supreme Court rulings, things seem to be getting worse in the world so I asked God the same question everyone seems to ask when things go wrong.
Why are these things happening? Why don’t You step in and do something? Why do good people keep getting hurt?
His answer. We find it in these words. Nor did it.
Three times in the Book of Jeremiah we find these words. Each time it is in reference to evil deeds that humans were doing.
“And they have built the high places of Trophet, which is in the Valley of the Song of Hinnom, to burn their sons and their daughters in the fire, which I did not command, nor did it come into My heart.” Jeremiah 7:31 NKJV – emphasis mine.
“(they have also built the high places of Baal, to burn their sons with fire for burnt offerings to Baal, which I did not command or speak, nor did it come into My mind).” Jeremiah 19:5 NKJV – emphasis mine
“And they built the high places of Baal which are in the Valley of the Son of Hinnom, to cause their sons and their daughters to pass through the fire to Molech, which I did not command them, nor did it come into My mind that they should do this abomination, to cause Judah to sin.” Jeremiah 32:35 NKJV – emphasis mine
Nor did it.
Those evil things were not commanded nor did they enter the Heart or Mind of God for His people to do (I remind you that God was speaking to His people – Israel and Judah) and that evil doings of humans was the reason God flooded the Earth (Genesis 7-8).
So church, I’m here to encourage you. Evil is not God’s intention nor does it enter His heart or mind. It has been here since the beginning of time and God’s plan has always been to protect us from it. So much He didn’t even want us to have knowledge of it. But, since that is not the case, “the anger of the Lord will not turn back until He has executed and performed the thoughts of His heart.” (Jeremiah 23:20a). He spoke these words through the prophet Judah but also added, “In the latter days you will understand it perfectly.” (Jeremiah 23:20b)
Now, Israel and Judah understood that to mean they would be taken home after being in captivity for 70 years; however, Jeremiah tells us the intentions of God’s heart which we have the assurance of today.
“Behold, the days are coming, says the Lord, that I will perform that good thing which I have promised to the house of Israel and to the house of Judah: ‘In those days and at that time I will cause to grow up to David a Branch of righteousness; He shall execute judgement and righteousness in the earth.’” Jeremiah 33:15
It’s this reminder that we, the church, need to remember today. Jesus fulfilled those words. He came to earth to live and die for our sins. His resurrection assures us that evil will be taken care of. So remember these things: Jesus is King. His Word Stands. His Truth Stands. He shall execute judgment and righteousness.
So, what do we – the Church/Christian – do in the mean time?
We pray. We love. We show the world who Jesus is. We tell of His wondrous works. We speak His Truth with Love and Grace. We extend mercy to those who need it and we forgive ourselves at times. We allow Him to Judge – not only us but the evil in this world. Because that is the Intentions of His Heart and Mind.
And the evil?
We should be able to say at the end . . . Nor did it (enter our hearts and mind).