We hear a lot about evil in our world. How would you define evil? an interesting clip from a greek word study book gives the following,
From the evil one (apo tou ponrou). The ablative case in the Greek obscures the gender. We have no way of knowing whether it is ho ponros (the evil one) or to ponron (the evil thing). And if it is masculine and so ho ponros, it can either refer to the devil as the Evil One par excellence or the evil man whoever he may be who seeks to do us ill. The word ponros has a curious history coming from ponos (toil) and pone (to work). It reflects the idea either that work is bad or that this particular work is bad and so the bad idea drives out the good in work or toil, an example of human depravity surely. (Word Pictures)
I am still wrestling with the implications of the picture painted by the word evil in the Disciple’s Prayer – “devliver us from evil (or the evil one).” Any work that would attempt to drive out the bad would be considered evil. This sure brings our actions under a different kind of scrutiny. Generally we associate evil with certain kinds of actions – killing, stealing, stalking, abuse, battery and the like. Yet, any driving out of the good is an evil work. So, what does that mean when I happen to dislike something and work to prevent it. What if what I dislike is my preference and has nothing really to do with anything “bad.” My work to thwart the good that may be produced would then be evil.
My actions are now under an interestingly different microscope. I may easily avoid killing, stealing, stalking, abuse and battery. How easy is it to avoid calling something not my preference a bad thing and so not considering the good it might produce and therefore be acting with evil intent? …
3 comments on “Driving out the good …”
Great insight into what really drives evil in the world…
Can huper (Strong’s #5228) with the ablative in 2 Thess.2:1 refer to our gathering together above at the Presence of Christ or may it also refer to a gathering that is separate “from” and therefore precedent to His visible Presence?
In I Cor.15:29 were they baptised “instead of” rather than “on behalf of” the dead? Mel
What drives the distinction? The text or the system in place requiring the text to be distinguished in this way? If we need a text to support a particular escathological bent then nuances become the thing for which we look. Building a system on a nuance is dangerous hermeneutics.