Did God create evil? Did humans create evil through original sin? Did Satan create evil? Where does it come from?
Or is "good" and "evil" just relative, and non-existent in an objective sense?
"Good" and "evil" are man's definitions of events/people, and constantly change with time and culture. While one might say that humans create evil, it's not through "original sin" (whatever that is) and thus not from Satan or anywhere else. As "evil" is completely subjective (being defined by people) it cannot be considered objective, either.
Exactly, wilderness. That's what I was referring to in my thread that you commented on! It cannot be objective because it is completely subjective, therefore, it cannot exist !
I recently had a thread about the same topic. I believe it is the latter, janesix!
isaiah 45:7 I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the LORD do all these things
Most Christians won't admit that, even when you provide the scripture. They will twist it to something else.
Have you considered that "twisting" is not really that in most cases, but trying to explain and understand an archaic language that still holds sway today. To admit that one does not understand all that is found the the Bible is a mark of understanding, not necessarily intelligence. But caution has to be employed when not understanding.
Here on the Hub it is apparent that those that have the greatest distain for God and the Bible are reacting to the religious community from which they came and the teaching therein. Being unable to separate "religions" developed by man and the works of God manifests into the negatives about God. (I speak in general. Though not all fit into this "box", the majority do.)
The Hebrew words used in Isaiah, as well as words and customs found in other parts of the Bible, are estranged to common parlance of today. I am quite sure that an objective mind would find an entirely different understanding of most of the supposed conflicts, but only if personally studied. Predisposed thought or "the experts say... so it must be true" is not reasoning.
To believe based on personal study, experience and knowledge is reasoning. To reject based on experiences with man is foolishness.
^ This, exactly. Appreciation for the vast amount of difference between archaic Hebrew and modern English is not "twisting"; it's academic integrity. If I wanted to be dishonest, I would adopt the approach of people like Ken Ham or janesix and assume that everything I read at literal face-value in English is exactly the message intended in the original Hebrew because it's *convenient* and *lazy*.
I don't feel that evil is as much a "thing" as it is a "lack of a thing". Take coldness or darkness for instance. They don't exist; they're just names given to the absence of heat and the absence of light, respectively.
Of course, taking evil to be "the departure from or lack of goodness" leads us to the problem of defining "good". I personally view God to be the ultimate standard of good. Those who believe that man is the ultimate decider of what is good, on the other hand, will probably find themselves agreeing with Wilderness.
I would also like to point out that it is true that, in some versions of the Bible, Isaiah 45:7 reads "...I [God] make peace and create evil: I the LORD do all these things".
But don't fall into the trap of thinking that what you're taking at face value in English is *necessarily* what the author was actually conveying in Hebrew. It makes for lazy exegesis--the same very kind that people like Ken Ham use in their "justification" that Earth is only 6,000 years old.
Unlike the English language with its massive vocabulary of 1,025,000 words (and growing all the time), Biblical Hebrew had a vocabulary of less than 9,000 words. Therefore it is not uncommon for a Hebrew word in the Bible to have many definitions, depending on the context in which it's used.
The word translated (poorly, IMHO) as 'evil' in this sentence is the Hebrew word 'rah'. 'Rah' can have several meanings, only one of which is 'moral evil'. When you read Isaiah 45:7 in its entire context, it's apparent that natural phenomena are being described. The definition of 'moral evil' doesn't make sense here, nor would it many of the other similar contexts where 'rah' is found.
A far more accurate definition, given the surrounding context and the multiple examples we have of this word's usage, would be 'calamity', 'distress', 'disaster', 'affliction', or 'peril'. This is why most Bibles don't use the word 'evil' here; it's inaccurate and misleading.
The function of this verse is not "God created moral evil", but rather "God is responsible for rewarding his people for obedience and bringing punishment (calamity, distress, or 'rah') when they disobey.
It appears that Janesix was correct: http://hubpages.com/forum/topic/129919#post2724349
I find it annoying that ignorant Christians who don't understand the Bible they claim to follow are ragged on for their ignorance, but when we take the time to make sure we're properly interpreting scripture we're just "twisting it to something else". I wish people could just be honest and say, "I refuse to believe you, regardless of any developments of history, facts, or linguistic understanding."
If you and janesix want to chuck academic integrity out the window and be Biblical literalists like Ken Ham and his ilk, despite the evidence that goes against your interpretation in this context, then go ahead. More power to you.
Either the writing of the bible was inspired and overseen by God or it wasn't.
If it wasn't, it is worthless as anything but another lying history book, known to full of errors and falsehoods.
If it was, take it as read and don't change His word into something more palatable. When His word is that He created evil it means He created evil and it is to be accepted as such.
Nothing has changed except man's understanding and his interest in God. Malachi 3:6.
Which is what Janesix said in the first place. Don't like what the bible says because it doesn't agree with either reality or our own perception of what a god should be/do? Change the meaning of the words until it DOES match our "understanding" (meaning it says whatever we want it to say).
You say it is a result of understanding, and I don't doubt that. But that doesn't change the fact that the writings are being spun into whatever the person with the "understanding" wishes them to say without regard to either what they DO say or what the original (unknown) writer wanted them to say.
This question is thought-provoking since the dawn.
I'd say, God made the laws. There was the tree of knowledge, but we couldn't resist. We got nosy... even before that, there was one, who had grandiose ideas that ran contrary to God. (The very heart of evil since God is goodness) He allowed us to choose, so that he could fill the world (as he desired from the beginning) with like minds who will fellowship with him in the beauty he created with the harmony he desires. He took a look at what he made and said, "That's good!!!" But soon, it wasn't good no more... but he had a back-up plan. He's patient, he can wait...
Evil came from the contradictory opinion that "I am just as good as you, you ol' creAtor!!! I think I can rule better than you ANY day..." He wants a houseful of people who have been tried, and still agree that His "goodness" is best. What a world that will be!!!
Evil is the absence of Good but not a source of power but the absence of it.
Good = good for what?
Bad or evil = bad for what?
The "what" is Life.
Q.What is bad for Life?
A. Whatever will prevent you from living on some level... life on earth or life in eternity?
I believe Jesus addressed this question by explaining, it matters less about what you put into your body and more about what you put into your mind.
Therefore, I would say we are the author of evil.
(I guess sometimes we do things that could prevent life in eternity. )
It seems to me, we have the choice of life or death according to what we accept into our minds.
Do we invent evil or is it monkey see monkey do?
Did God invent evil?
Did God intend evil?
? ? ?
If you believe in a Creator of Everything, then by default, that creator would have to have created evil.
No, that would be a dichotomy of purpose. Free will, the much talked about but misinterpreted issue, comes into play. And we are not "twisting" words. Again, the Hebrew allows for a contextual reading. Plus here there is the use of "make" and "create," two different words, two similar actions of which the second plays off the first.
I understand it to mean that God says He made peace (proper things) but also knows that this gives "free will" license to the non-believer to do as he wished, which, of course, would be the opposite of the intent (impropriety), hence evil.
I am comfortable that this is a proper interpretation, quite simple actually.
The more I think about it, maybe a spirit, once formed, cannot be erased. Once inevitably formed, evil exists forever. But it will be harnessed, on the OTHER side of the gulf. His will for perfection is coming from willing participants. Because He said so...
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