A Trilogy of the Unreal: Part 3 – The Reality of Evil

In 08 Musings by Jack Reagan on 2012/07/28 at 9:09 AM

There are those who contend that the U.S. has become awash in sin, corruption and evil of all kinds. They can offer rather convincing statistics to support their belief. They cite the high abortion rate (55 million), the billion-dollar pornography industry, the high numbers of illegitimate births and the explosion of sexually transmitted diseases and more.

There are even more who contend that there is nothing wrong and that those who do “evil” are not immoral at all, but are merely exercising their free choice to determine for themselves what their personal moral code will be. (Can a society survive without objective moral codes?)

Why do we call evil “evil?” It is the opposite of good and in order to call anything evil, we must be familiar with a standard of goodness. If we did not know what was morally good, we could never judge anything to be morally evil because there would be no standard of comparison. The only absolute standard of goodness is God and His moral law which binds all humans to obedience whether they believe it or like it or not. When an action or a series of actions violates the natural moral law, it is considered to be evil or sinful.

A problem arises when a society rejects God, at least in practice as has American society. The standard of moral goodness is changed from the infallible God to fellow human beings in various positions of power: legislators, judges, media. They tend to set the standard based usually on personal and subjective preferences. Those who do not like the restrictions of divine law to begin with easily succumb to the lure of evil now described as a good, or at least no longer evil. (None of this changes God’s mind at all.)

Machiavelli, the author of “The Prince”, taught that humans were basically evil in action and intent. Jean Jacques Rousseau, the French “philosopher”, taught that people are all basically good and that society corrupts them . . . forgetting that a society is composed of people.  St. Paul called men sinners, but he did not say they were evil. The Church teachers that, because of Original Sin, man has a tendency to sin and evil and does fall, but is not per se evil because there is the possibility of forgiveness for the repentant. Evil does not seek forgiveness because real evil sees nothing to be forgiven for because it does not see its evil actions as evil.

There is an objective standard of moral goodness and moral evil (sin). This is imposed by the Creator and its validity and force does not depend on human acceptance of the standards. This is the standard by which all humans will be judged. Too many people think they are free to change divine law to suit themselves. The Supreme Court attempted this in Roe vs Wade. The problem is that God did not agree. A city council cannot change state law and a state cannot change federal law, and humans cannot change divine law . . . even though they attempt to do rather frequently.

The safest course is to strive to be on God’s side if for no other reason that no human or group of humans has even a scintilla of divine intelligence. Why follow the ignorant and weak? “Right is still right even if no one is right and wrong is still wrong even if every one is wrong.”

The choice is ours, choosing human “wisdom” because it appeals to us is at least risky. Choosing divine wisdom is not always to our liking, but it will keep us on the right road. And only the right road will reach the destination.

  1. A priest once told our congregation that the Bible is not a menu. We do not get to pick and choose out of it what we like and ignore or leave the rest. Just because we don’t like the rule does not mean it doesn’t exist. Another saying I heard, “If God had wanted a promiscuous society He would have given us the 10 suggestions and not the Ten Commandments.”

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