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True2Ourselves Forums   > Community Topics > Theology  > Where did evil come from?

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  #1  
Old 07-29-2010, 12:02 PM
doinghiswill's Avatar
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Default Where did evil come from?

Again just basic concepts of the 'why' of it all.
here is a basic meaning for evil.....

Evil
E'VIL, a. e'vl. [Heb. to be unjust or injurious, to defraud.]

1. Having bad qualities of a natural kind; mischievous; having qualities which tend to injury, or to produce mischief.

Some evil beast hath devoured him. Gen 37.

2. Having bad qualities of a moral kind; wicked; corrupt; perverse; wrong; as evil thoughts; evil deeds; evil speaking; an evil generation.

3. Unfortunate; unhappy; producing sorrow, distress, injury or calamity; as evil tidings; evil arrows; evil days.

E'VIL, n. Evil is natural or moral. Natural evil is any thing which produces pain, distress, loss or calamity, or which in any way disturbs the peace, impairs the happiness, or destroys the perfection of natural beings.

Moral evil is any deviation of a moral agent from the rules of conduct prescribed to him by God, or by legitimate human authority; or it is any violation of the plain principles of justice and rectitude.

There are also evils called civil, which affect injuriously the peace or prosperity of a city or state; and political evils, which injure a nation, in its public capacity.

All wickedness, all crimes, all violations of law and right are moral evils. Diseases are natural evils, but they often proceed from moral evils.

2. Misfortune; mischief; injury.

There shall no evil befall thee. Psa 91.

A prudent man foreseeth the evil, and hideth himself. Prov 22.

3. Depravity; corruption of heart, or disposition to commit wickedness; malignity.

The heart of the sons of men is full of evil. Eccl 9.
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Old 07-29-2010, 12:12 PM
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Default Re: Where did evil come from?

This is interesting and nice topic.
Since God created and source of everything, evil must have come from God.
I would like to read what others say before I give my views, although I gave mine already but I am not blaming God but I hope I can explain my understanding of how God uses evil.
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Old 07-29-2010, 01:57 PM
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Default Re: Where did evil come from?

Quote:
Where did evil come from?
My bible says:
I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the LORD do all these things. Isaiah 45:7
__________________
And if any man think that he knoweth any thing, he knoweth nothing yet as he ought to know. 1 Corinthians 8:2

If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men. Romans 12:18

Salt is good, but if the salt loses its flavor, how will you season it? Have salt in yourselves, and have peace with one another. Mark 9:50
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Old 07-29-2010, 03:40 PM
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Default Re: Where did evil come from?

In my opinion, evil comes from the lack of perfection in things. It is non-being. Whatever is in line with its true nature is good, it has essence. Whatever is not in line with its true nature is non-essence, a defect, a lack.

In other words, and paradoxically, good exists in reality but evil does not. Evil is simply a lack, non-being. It is similar to cold or darkness. Darkness is the absence of light, it does not exist. It cannot be detected nor measured. Light is energy, it can be detected and measured.

The same with cold. Cold does not exist. You cannot measure cold as it is simply the absence of heat. The lowest possible temperature, or absolute zero as it is called, is −273.15 degrees Celsius, or −459.67 degrees Fahrenheit.The lowest possible temperature is defined as the point at which all atomic motion ceases.

The only way to measure that is by measuring heat or motion not by detecting cold. Cold is only an absence. And yet, it can be devastating! The same as evil, it is not, but it causes havoc.

Thus, evil cannot come from God as God is capable only of what truly is. Only what really exists, what is true to its own nature is something God can do. Thus, God is not omnipotent in the sense of absolute possibilities. God cannot not be, he cannot produce what is not.

For example, God cannot create a square circle. Why? Because a square circle is nothing, it is a self contradictory proposition. Nothing Is impossible for God!

Last edited by SolaVerbumDei : 07-29-2010 at 07:01 PM.
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Old 07-29-2010, 03:48 PM
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Default Re: Where did evil come from?

Quote:
Originally Posted by SolaVerbumDei View Post
In my opinion, evil comes from the lack of perfection in things. It is non-being. Whatever is in line with its true nature is good, it has essence. Whatever is not in line with its true nature is non-essence, a defect, a lack.

In other words, and paradoxically, good exists in reality but evil does not. Evil is simply a lack, non-being. It is similar to cold or darkness. Darkness is the absence of light, it does not exist. It cannot be detected nor measured. Light is energy, it can be detected and measured.

The same with cold. Cold does not exist. You cannot measure cold as it is simply the absence of heat. The lowest possible temperature, or absolute zero as it is called, is −273.15 degrees Celsius, or −459.67 degrees Fahrenheit.The lowest possible temperature is defined as the point at which all atomic motion ceases.

The only way to measure that is by measure heat or motion not by detecting cold. Cold is only an absence. And yet, it can be devastating! The same as evil, it is not, but it causes havoc.

Thus, evil cannot come from God as God is capable only of what truly is. Only what really exists, what is true to its own nature is something God can do. Thus, God is not omnipotent in the sense of absolute possibilities. God cannot not be, he cannot produce what is not.

For example, God cannot create a square circle. Why? Because a square circle is nothing, it is a self contradictory proposition. Nothing Is impossible for God!
Agreed.

Evil is an illusion, but if I had of just said that... I wonder what kind of grief I would have gotten over it. Yet, that is essentially what you are saying. That evil is not real, for God is all that is and God is not evil.
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And if any man think that he knoweth any thing, he knoweth nothing yet as he ought to know. 1 Corinthians 8:2

If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men. Romans 12:18

Salt is good, but if the salt loses its flavor, how will you season it? Have salt in yourselves, and have peace with one another. Mark 9:50
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Old 07-29-2010, 04:05 PM
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Default Re: Where did evil come from?

Quote:
Originally Posted by PermaPetra View Post
Agreed.

Evil is an illusion, but if I had of just said that... I wonder what kind of grief I would have gotten over it. Yet, that is essentially what you are saying. That evil is not real, for God is all that is and God is not evil.
Here is another way to say that.....evil is the lie.
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Old 07-29-2010, 04:08 PM
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Default Re: Where did evil come from?

"But one may say, if God is not responsible for evil things, why is it said in the book of Esaias, 'I am He that prepared light and Who formed darkness, Who makes peace and Who creates evils' (45:7)." And again, "There came down evils from the Lord upon the gates of Jerusalem" (Mich. 1:12). And, "Shall there be evil in the city which the Lord hath not wrought?" (Amos 3:6). And in the great Ode of Moses, "Behold, I am and there is no god beside Me. I will slay, and I will make to live; I will smite, and I will heal" (Deut. 32:39). But none of these citations, to him who understands the deeper meaning of the Holy Scriptures, casts any blame on God, as if He were the cause of evils and their creator, for He Who said, "I am the One Who makes light and darkness," shows Himself as the Creator of the universe, not that He is the creator of any evil.... "He creates evils," that is, "He refashions them and brings them to a good state, so that they leave their evilness, to take on the nature of good." St. Basil the Great (4th c.), That God is not the Cause of Evil

Likewise, St. Ephraim states: "What kind of evil does God bring about? None, if we are using the definition as the opposite of good. But as we know, there are different usages of the word in Scripture and elsewhere, so that 'evil' is sometimes used referring to common human terms. For we know that this same word 'evil' is also used to refer to something unpleasant to man... A human may refer to punishment as an evil wrought upon him, yet we know that it is not an ontological evil, but a good for his betterment."

Saint Isaac of Syria says: "He who applies pedagogical punishments in order to give health, is punishing with love, but he who is looking for vengeance, is devoid of love. God punishes with love, not defending Himself — far be it —but He wants to heal His image, and He does not keep His wrath for long. This way of love is the way of uprightness, and it does not change with passion to a defense. A man who is just and wise is like God because he never chastises a man in revenge for wickedness, but only in order to correct him or that others be afraid" (Homily 73)

But God also permits us to reap the natural consequence of our departure from His good creation:

Jeremiah 2:17,19: "Hath not thy forsaking Me brought these things upon thee? saith the Lord thy God.... Thine apostasy shall chastise thee and thy wickedness shall reprove thee; know then, and see that thy forsaking Me hath been bitter to thee, saith the Lord thy God."
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Old 07-29-2010, 04:13 PM
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Default Re: Where did evil come from?

Quote:
Originally Posted by PermaPetra View Post
My bible says:
I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the LORD do all these things. Isaiah 45:7
i just looked up a few things thought i'd share them....

Notes from Isa 45:7-


Notes for Verse 7
Verse 7. form . . . create -- yatzar, to give "form" to previously existing matter. Bara, to "create" from nothing the chaotic dark material.

light . . . darkness -- literally (Ge 1:1-3), emblematical also, prosperity to Cyrus, calamity to Babylon and the nations to be vanquished [GROTIUS] . . . Isaiah refers also to the Oriental belief in two coexistent, eternal principles, ever struggling with each other, light or good, and darkness or evil, Oromasden and Ahrimanen. God, here, in opposition, asserts His sovereignty over both [VITRINGA].

create evil -- not moral evil (Jas 1:13), but in contrast to "peace" in the parallel clause, war, disaster (compare Ps 65:7 Am 3:6).
—Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
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Old 07-29-2010, 04:34 PM
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Default Re: Where did evil come from?

Quote:
Originally Posted by doinghiswill View Post
i just looked up a few things thought i'd share them....

Notes from Isa 45:7-


Notes for Verse 7
Verse 7. form . . . create -- yatzar, to give "form" to previously existing matter. Bara, to "create" from nothing the chaotic dark material.

light . . . darkness -- literally (Ge 1:1-3), emblematical also, prosperity to Cyrus, calamity to Babylon and the nations to be vanquished [GROTIUS] . . . Isaiah refers also to the Oriental belief in two coexistent, eternal principles, ever struggling with each other, light or good, and darkness or evil, Oromasden and Ahrimanen. God, here, in opposition, asserts His sovereignty over both [VITRINGA].

create evil -- not moral evil (Jas 1:13), but in contrast to "peace" in the parallel clause, war, disaster (compare Ps 65:7 Am 3:6).
—Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
Where were all these notes when I was on my search to understand God!?!?

LOL, it's okay... probably wouldn't have put the two plus two together anyway.

Quote:
Notes for Verse 7
Verse 7. form . . . create -- yatzar, to give "form" to previously existing matter. Bara, to "create" from nothing the chaotic dark material.
Exactly, the words "form" and "make" is that which is real. Within that verse it is shown that it is light and peace that is real.

The word "create" on the other hand is the imagination and it is the imagination (unreal) that creates the impression that darkness and evil are real.

Why do the heathen rage, and the people imagine a vain thing?
Psalm 2:1

Thank you for those notes, doinghiswill.

Perma
__________________
And if any man think that he knoweth any thing, he knoweth nothing yet as he ought to know. 1 Corinthians 8:2

If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men. Romans 12:18

Salt is good, but if the salt loses its flavor, how will you season it? Have salt in yourselves, and have peace with one another. Mark 9:50
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Old 07-29-2010, 04:36 PM
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Default Re: Where did evil come from?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Linsinbigler View Post
"But one may say, if God is not responsible for evil things, why is it said in the book of Esaias, 'I am He that prepared light and Who formed darkness, Who makes peace and Who creates evils' (45:7)." And again, "There came down evils from the Lord upon the gates of Jerusalem" (Mich. 1:12). And, "Shall there be evil in the city which the Lord hath not wrought?" (Amos 3:6). And in the great Ode of Moses, "Behold, I am and there is no god beside Me. I will slay, and I will make to live; I will smite, and I will heal" (Deut. 32:39). But none of these citations, to him who understands the deeper meaning of the Holy Scriptures, casts any blame on God, as if He were the cause of evils and their creator, for He Who said, "I am the One Who makes light and darkness," shows Himself as the Creator of the universe, not that He is the creator of any evil.... "He creates evils," that is, "He refashions them and brings them to a good state, so that they leave their evilness, to take on the nature of good." St. Basil the Great (4th c.), That God is not the Cause of Evil

Likewise, St. Ephraim states: "What kind of evil does God bring about? None, if we are using the definition as the opposite of good. But as we know, there are different usages of the word in Scripture and elsewhere, so that 'evil' is sometimes used referring to common human terms. For we know that this same word 'evil' is also used to refer to something unpleasant to man... A human may refer to punishment as an evil wrought upon him, yet we know that it is not an ontological evil, but a good for his betterment."

Saint Isaac of Syria says: "He who applies pedagogical punishments in order to give health, is punishing with love, but he who is looking for vengeance, is devoid of love. God punishes with love, not defending Himself — far be it —but He wants to heal His image, and He does not keep His wrath for long. This way of love is the way of uprightness, and it does not change with passion to a defense. A man who is just and wise is like God because he never chastises a man in revenge for wickedness, but only in order to correct him or that others be afraid" (Homily 73)

But God also permits us to reap the natural consequence of our departure from His good creation:

Jeremiah 2:17,19: "Hath not thy forsaking Me brought these things upon thee? saith the Lord thy God.... Thine apostasy shall chastise thee and thy wickedness shall reprove thee; know then, and see that thy forsaking Me hath been bitter to thee, saith the Lord thy God."
As is usual I find the Orthodox explanation beautiful.

Thank you!
Perma
__________________
And if any man think that he knoweth any thing, he knoweth nothing yet as he ought to know. 1 Corinthians 8:2

If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men. Romans 12:18

Salt is good, but if the salt loses its flavor, how will you season it? Have salt in yourselves, and have peace with one another. Mark 9:50
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