Heart Matters #12. “Evil.”

Heart Matters #12. “Evil.”

We all know men and women who have known the Lord and then turned away from Him. Brethren who spent years in dedicated service to the church, who one day completely cut ties with us. Whether they crossed over into that state of no-return, only the Lord knows. But one thing is obvious, Jesus is no longer their standard of absolute good and evil.

It is true that some brethren seem to only see things in terms of Black and White. Their tendency to go off halfcocked over everything that doesn’t fit their present religious profile can make the church an unpleasant place. However, equally unhealthy is the tendency of some to excuse blatant wrongdoing in the name of “giving the benefit of the doubt.”

Gray areas do exist. We do not always have all the facts in every situation. This calls for prayerful insight. Remember, “God Himself is kind to ungrateful and evil men (Luke 6:35). If He wasn’t, where would we be today?

Jesus’ goal is to expose the heart of you and me by expecting us to judge righteously in all situations. We must clear the table of any situational ethics and simply tell the truth. He commands, “But let your statement be, ‘Yes, yes’ or ‘No, no’; anything beyond these is of evil” (Matthew 5:37).

If your heart is right before God, you speak that which is right before God. But if your heart is evil before God, you speak that which is evil before God. Jesus says to those who reject him as the divine standard of righteousness: “You snakes! You are evil people, so how can you say anything good? The mouth speaks the things that are in the heart” (Matthew 12:34).

Evil is never hard to find—it is ever within our reach. Therefore…

“Take care, brothers and sisters, lest there be in any of you an evil, unbelieving heart, leading you to fall away from the living God” (Hebrews 3:12).

John Staiger


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