Did God Create Evil?

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Did God Create Evil?

Updated: Sep 29, 2019


One of the great questions facing those who believe the Bible is the problem of evil. If God is all-loving and all-powerful, then why do we have evil in the universe? Did God create evil? If so, why did He do it? Would that not make Him a bad God?


Scripture says that when God finished His creation, He saw everything and declared it "very good" (Genesis 1:31). Many Scriptures affirm that God is not the author of evil: "God cannot be tempted by evil, and He Himself does not tempt anyone" (James 1:13). "God is light, and in Him, there is no darkness at all" (1 John 1:5). "God is not the author of confusion" (1 Corinthians 14:33)—and if that is true, He cannot in any way be the author of evil.


It is helpful, I think, to understand that sin is not itself a thing created. Sin is neither substance, being, spirit, nor matter. So it is technically not proper to think of sin as something that was created. Sin is simply a lack of moral perfection in a fallen creature. Fallen creatures themselves bear full responsibility for their sin. And all evil in the universe emanates from the sins of fallen creatures.


Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all people, because all sinned.

Romans 5:12


Death, pain, disease, stress, exhaustion, calamity, and all the bad things that happen came as a result of the entrance of sin into the universe (see Genesis 3:14-24). All those evil effects of sin continue to work in the world and will be with us as long as sin is.



1 Corinthians 10:13 promises us that God will not permit a greater trial than we can bear. And James 1:13 tells us that God will not tempt us with evil.


In contrast to the this verse God makes us know about His eternal power in 2 Corinthians 1:8-9 which speaks about our reliance on God, the necessity of His sovereign rule that we may turn to Him when in trials that we cannot bare. It may striking seem a contradiction of what God ordains, but God has a way of showing his people that we are to consistently rely on the Bread of life.


God is certainly sovereign over evil. There's a sense in which it is proper even to say that evil is part of His eternal decree. He planned for it. It did not take Him by surprise. It is not an interruption of His eternal plan. He declared the end from the beginning, and He is still working all things for His good pleasure (Isaiah 46:9-10).


But God's role with regard to evil is never as its author. He simply permits evil agents to work, then overrules evil for His own wise and holy ends. Ultimately He is able to make all things-including all the fruits of all the evil of all time-work together for a greater good .


And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who[a] have been called according to his purpose

Romans 8:28.

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