Can we prove the existence of evil?

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Hey, thanks again for sending in questions related to our recent sermons. This last week, we finished studying the Book of Ephesians, talked about the section where Paul speaks to our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but is against the powers of darkness, the rulers and principalities of this present age, evil. That is our real struggle. And so the question comes in this week. How do we prove that there’s evil?

Or can we prove that there is evil? I’d say maybe some of the best evidence, although I know this won’t convince everyone, is to throw it back at the person and ask, what’s your explanation for what’s wrong with the world? I mean, if this world really is only what can be measured, what can it be observed by scientific inquiry?

Why hasn’t technology fixed what’s wrong? Why hasn’t all of our economic efforts, modern psychology, modern medicine, city planning?

Why can’t we solve what is wrong around here? Isn’t all of our efforts, isn’t all of our brilliant efforts that certainly make a difference? Aren’t those enough? And since they aren’t, does that tell us something else? I’d say maybe the real need to answer that question isn’t on the proving of evil, but on the proving that there isn’t evil.

And then, as we’ve said before and other times that we have studied passages with evil spirits and Jesus casting them out. Jesus was not simplistic in his understanding of the world. When someone was sad or depressed, had emotional issues, he would address them like that. When someone had neurological issues, epilepsy, he would address them like that. And then when somebody had a demon, he would address that need.

He didn’t put everything all under the banner of demons, evil spirits. Every time somebody was sick or sad or had a mental issue, he didn’t call all of that evil. He wasn’t simplistic. And so I would say maybe if somebody is claiming there is no such thing as evil, maybe it’s that person who is being simplistic. You’re taking one potential problem off of the table and trying to solve what is wrong in the world without even considering evil as a possibility.

So we hope that that helps. If we ignore the existence of evil, I think that we will find we have a lot harder time explaining the world and dealing with the issues that we really face all the time. And so if we ignore it, I think we do that to our peril. Thanks for the question. We’ll see you next time.