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April 29, 2012
 

Lord’s Day Devotional; The Knowledge Of Good And Evil

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Written by: Shari Popejoy
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The serpent said of the fruit of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil:

“For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” Genesis 3:5

“Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they realized they were naked;” Genesis 3:7

Obviously something happened in the thought processes of Adam and Eve in how they related to and perceived each other after they ate the fruit. . . they felt and noticed . . . naked.   How is it possible to not know you are naked one moment, and realize you are the next?  Evidently modesty, conscience, the awareness that they had just rebelled and disobeyed against God, and shame crept into their thoughts and affected their perceptions of each other.

They could no longer be in each others’ presence without covering intimacy. . . the beginnings of barriers, miscommunication, misperception, and misunderstanding.  Now, what was good (naked and unashamed) was perceived evil.  What was evil (separation from God) was perceived good.  What a mixed up and chaotic mess the knowledge of good and evil brings.

As fallen humans, we don’t know what is good and evil, without relying on the wisdom of God’s instruction.  We’ve been getting it wrong in every generation ever since.

Things we think are good are evil.  As a simple example, our brain tells us that chocolate cake is good, but in large quantities it can wreak havoc upon our bodies. . . becoming evil.  Don’t even get me started on non-covenantal sex, rebellion against authority, following your heart, the right to be happy, falling out of love as an excuse for divorce, a woman’s right to choose. . . and other societal evils some call good.

Do you know that:

  • the word of God is powerful (Hebrews 4:12). . .
  • to help rightly divide truth from error (II Timothy 2:15),
  • to keep us from sin (Psalm 119:11),
  • to tear down strongholds (II Corinthians 10:4)
  • to teach us the difference between good and evil?

Jeremiah 16:12 explains that continuing in the stubbornness of one’s heart is evil.

Being a Christian means:

  • renewing one’s mind (Romans 12:2)
  • to have the thoughts of Christ (I Cor 2:1)
  • (which are the thoughts of God — since He only says what God tells him to say John 8:28, 38, John 14:7)

Knowing the mind of Christ is the result of daily communion, listening to, following the leading of the Spirit, and  always checking our thoughts against the truth of the scriptures for what is good and evil.  “What is truth?” Pilate asked Jesus, who replied. . . “For this reason I was born, and for this I came into the world, to testify to the TRUTH.  Everyone on the side of truth listens to me.” John 18:37

We, who are bought with a price by Christ, and commit our lives to obedience and devotion by believing on his name, need to be acquainted with the TRUTH He taught, if we are to successfully determine what is good and what is evil.

“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the Lord.  For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.” Isaiah 55:8-9

“How precious also are thy thoughts unto me, O God! how great is the sum of them!  Psalm 139:17

Have a wonderful Lord’s Day, and think about Him thinking about you!

Further reflection:

  1. And how do we avoid what is evil?  Don’t listen to Satan, the Father of Lies. . . , “for there is no TRUTH in him”. (John 8:44).
  2. We can begin to know the difference between good and evil by:
  • training our mind to only think on what is good (Philippians 4:8)
  • to eschew evil (Job 1:1 & I Peter 3:11)
  • We must hide God’s word in our heart that we might not sin against God (Psalm 119:11)
  • we must constantly train our mind to distinguish between good from evil (Hebrews 5:14)
  • We must take every thought captive to the obedience of Christ (II Corinthians 10:5)


About the Author

Shari Popejoy
Shari Popejoy is the author of the book Won Without Words, and the blog Won Without Words, encouragement to wives. She writes the Livingstone Library, an adventure series for young people, and the blog Oh Joy!, (injoyinc.com/oh/) for busy moms. She is a frequent contributor to Christian print and online magazines, and writes from the quiet country of the Ozarks, where she lives with her husband, Marc, and their three children. You can find out all about her at sharipopejoy.com!



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