When We Can’t Recognize Evil

It’s becoming obvious in the sermons and watered-down rhetoric of many Christian church leaders and professing ministry in Christ.  It’s transparent in the carefully constructed conversations of after church fellowship where churches may still meet, and within church fellowship groups over zoom.  It’s glaringly evident in social media groups.

We’re missing something vital. Something we’ve lost that is so important it affects not only our example to the world and our status as the “salt of the earth,” but our walk with God and our future in His kingdom. We’re losing the ability to recognize evil and identify sin.  Especially when it’s subtle.

This is due in part to the world’s call to us and our acceptance of it as we pay heed to science, medicine, philosophy, humanist theory, revisionist history, and ecumenism instead of the life-giving words of the bible itself.

It’s an easy road in our internet-based, social-media driven world.  Thousands of quick Tweets and hundreds of videos.  Quasi research, op-eds and millions of pictures, memes, and unsupported or cleverly described opinions. There’s ever so much information at our fingertips. So much to see and so much to hear.

If our foundation is not firmly based on Christ

If our foundation is not firmly based on Christ, we can become easily sucked into this world with all of its sinful behaviors and equivocally accepted norms, allowing it to influence and eventually consume us.  This is a real battle for our souls – the essence of who we are and what we stand for.

When we leave aside personal bible study, heartfelt prayer, regular fasting, and making God and His way a part of our constant inner thought life, we risk quenching the Holy Spirit. And opening the door to sin and participation in that which unwittingly supports evil.

Yes, evil, as we gobble up the world’s humanistic philosophies.  Its political correctness, its anti-family, anti-Christian, anti-bible and anti-God agendas.  From organizations like the BLM to coronavirus narratives.  Abortion to vaccine saviors.  Tolerance. Liberalism. Socialism. Communism. Euthanasia. Climate change. Multiple genders. Sexual orientation. Identity politics.

Many of us are arguing aggressively in support of “isms” we think make us more righteous, magnanimous, unbiased and loving.  Or just more informed and scientifically, or intellectually knowledgeable and accurate.  And there’s a reveling in those feelings, a power in apparent knowledge and superiority.

None of us are immune 

Church leaders and ministry are not immune.  There is just as much capacity for being led astray onto paths that seem spiritual and “Christian.” In fact, it’s easier and even humanly desirable to make churches more acceptable to the world.  With satisfyingly respectable sentiments like “paying attention only to official sources,” solidarity, equality, multiculturalism, sustainability, social justice and obedience, the jump is made and the gap is shortened.  Today’s sermons are sprinkled, or rather doused with such themes.

Also going on is the justifying of stances on obeying authoritarian government demands to wear masks in church services and avoid hymn singing. Even claiming that meeting together for church services to worship God is not loving one’s neighbor and would be somehow going against God by going against a human government He set in place.

But those who are getting caught up in these things do not realize they are falling straight into satanic traps of deceit, lies, faithlessness, and worldly ideology that is not of God.  It may sound right.  It may seem right. But these paths lead to sin and are condoning, supporting, encouraging and even enabling evil as many of these organizations and ideas are not what they seem.  (Prov 14:12).  Some of them come from places of great darkness. Some are presently involved with it.

Yet, many Christians – leaders and layman alike – simply cannot see this.  They are deceived into thinking they’re doing the right thing (Col 2:8), believing that leaders, experts and organizations only have their best interests at heart.

Many surprisingly openly participate in virtue signaling and cancel culture which are blatant forms of self righteousness, hypocrisy and unrighteous judgement. Even while, Matt 6:1, reminds us, “Beware of practicing your righteousness before other people in order to be seen by them, for then you will have no reward from your Father who is in heaven. (ESV).  And 1 John 4:20 further asserts: “If someone says, “I love God,” and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen, how can he love God whom he has not seen?”

In conclusion

The world is always around us.  From birth until death.  We live in it, work in it, interact with it.  But as Christians we are to be a light.  We are to come out of the world. We are not to be influenced.  We are firmly reminded: “And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.”  (Rom 12:2)

There is much at stake, fellow followers of the Way.  Looking at the state of our world, the return of Jesus Christ cannot be far away. We need to stay close to God.  We need to be able to recognize when something is not of God. To be able to discern when something derives from sin and from evil. And we need to walk far away from it.  If we are unable to do so, we could be completely blinded along with the rest of the world and all that portends. (2 Cor 4:4)


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