Small Town Preacher - Big Time God
11/1/12 at 09:20 AM 11 Comments

Should Christians Make Choices Based On The Lesser Of Two Evils?

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Ever since I was a little boy I have heard people talk about making choices based on the lesser of two evils. Until recently I had never even considered whether this was a biblical way to make a choice or not. It was not until a year and a half ago when somebody made a choice based on the lesser of two evils that had devastating personal consequences in my life, and to many that I love dearly, that I started to question this whole mentality, especially among the people of God.

It is because of this deep soul searching about how I make my decisions that has led me to make some decisions that have been extremely unpopular recently. Dear friends have not understood how I could totally buck the system, including most conservatives, Christian or not, and not just follow along with the conventional wisdom. So I think I have finally worked through the issues enough to be able to write down my thoughts as to why I refuse to endorse any evil.

The Origins of Evil.

According to the Bible, the introduction of evil into this world came at the fall of man. It is when man became aware of the difference between good and evil and because of the disobedience of our original parents Adam and Eve, became predispositioned to choose evil.

Genesis 3:4-7
New King James Version (NKJV)
4 Then the serpent said to the woman, “You will not surely die. 5 For God knows that in the day you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.”

6 So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree desirable to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate. She also gave to her husband with her, and he ate. 7 Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together and made themselves coverings.

Romans 5:18-19
New King James Version (NKJV)
18 Therefore, as through one man’s offense judgment came to all men, resulting in condemnation, even so through one Man’s righteous act the free gift came to all men, resulting in justification of life. 19 For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so also by one Man’s obedience many will be made righteous.

Up until the time of the crucifixion of Jesus Christ and His subsequent resurrection, there was no solution to the sin problem in man. There were band-aids but no power to overcome evil. However after a person receives Jesus Christ in their life, then the power of sin to control the person has been broken. We are no longer slaves to sin.

Romans 6:5-7
New King James Version (NKJV)
5 For if we have been united together in the likeness of His death, certainly we also shall be in the likeness of His resurrection, 6 knowing this, that our old man was crucified with Him, that the body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves of sin. 7 For he who has died has been freed from sin.

Now the light bulb didn’t come on for me until I realized that the choice to sin is the decision to choose evil. Every decision we make needs to be evaluated in the light of good vs. evil. We know what is good and we know what is evil.

Making Choices Based On Good Vs. Evil

As I evaluated what was done to me a year and a half ago, I realized that it really wasn’t a choice between the lesser of two evils even though it looked like that on the surface. It was a choice between 2 evils and 1 good. There was a way that good could have been done in the situation but it would have a price for making that choice.

When we make choices based on the lesser of two evils, there really is no absolutes to base your decision on. Your decision is based on relativism. When you make choices between good vs. evil, there is absolutes. Like I said, we know what is good vs. what is evil. However it may cost us physically, socially, financially etc. The only thing it won’t cost us is spiritually.

Mark 8:36
New King James Version (NKJV)
36 For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul?

All of those things it might cost you are things of this world. What choosing good will never do is put your soul at risk. Now before you think I am just pushing my own agenda, let me show you where we are told specifically to make our choices based on good vs. evil.

Bible verses about doing good.

Mark 3:4
Then He said to them, “Is it lawful on the Sabbath to do good or to do evil, to save life or to kill?” But they kept silent.

Luke 6:27
[ Love Your Enemies ] “But I say to you who hear: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you,

John 5:28-29
New King James Version (NKJV)
28 Do not marvel at this; for the hour is coming in which all who are in the graves will hear His voice 29 and come forth—those who have done good, to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil, to the resurrection of condemnation.

Romans 12:21
New King James Version (NKJV)
21 Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.

Romans 14:16
New King James Version (NKJV)
16 Therefore do not let your good be spoken of as evil;

2 Corinthians 5:10
For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may receive the things done in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad.

Galatians 6:10
New King James Version (NKJV)
10 Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all, especially to those who are of the household of faith.

2 Thessalonians 3:13
New King James Version (NKJV)
13 But as for you, brethren, do not grow weary in doing good.

Hebrews 13:16
New King James Version (NKJV)
16 But do not forget to do good and to share, for with such sacrifices God is well pleased.

James 4:17
New King James Version (NKJV)
17 Therefore, to him who knows to do good and does not do it, to him it is sin.

Now as you can see, there are many scriptures that show that the Christian should be looking at how to do good. Doing good many times has consequences that cost us. In the case of what happened to me, the consequence would have been juggling relationships and working through transition and learning how to communicate. However the choice that was made was the breaking of a solemn promise.

Bible verses about evil.

Now compare what the Bible says about making choices by doing good with what it says about evil.

Proverbs 3:7
New King James Version (NKJV)
7 Do not be wise in your own eyes;
Fear the Lord and depart from evil.

Proverbs 4:14
New King James Version (NKJV)
14 Do not enter the path of the wicked,
And do not walk in the way of evil.

Proverbs 4:27
New King James Version (NKJV)
27 Do not turn to the right or the left;
Remove your foot from evil.

Proverbs 8:13
New King James Version (NKJV)
13 The fear of the Lord is to hate evil;
Pride and arrogance and the evil way
And the perverse mouth I hate.

1 Thessalonians 5:22
New King James Version (NKJV)
22 Abstain from every form of evil.

Wrestling with the lesser of two evils.

If you have openly and sincerely read those verses I think you can see the issue is not about choosing the lesser of two evils. Choosing evil is not an option. Just as Charles Spurgeon said.

“Of Two Evils, Choose Neither” – Charles Spurgeon

The real issue is how to do good when faced with bad choices. It takes getting down on your knees, asking Jesus what He would do, and being willing to take the consequences of your actions. I do not believe God gives you only a choice of evil. I believe that He always gives you a choice of doing good. The question is how much are you willing to lose in order to do good?

When it comes down to it, Jesus was faced with the lesser of two evils 3 times in the desert when He was tempted by Satan.

Matthew 4
New King James Version (NKJV)
Satan Tempts Jesus
4 Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. 2 And when He had fasted forty days and forty nights, afterward He was hungry. 3 Now when the tempter came to Him, he said, “If You are the Son of God, command that these stones become bread.”
4 But He answered and said, “It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.’”
5 Then the devil took Him up into the holy city, set Him on the pinnacle of the temple, 6 and said to Him, “If You are the Son of God, throw Yourself down. For it is written:
‘He shall give His angels charge over you,’
‘In their hands they shall bear you up,
Lest you dash your foot against a stone.’”
7 Jesus said to him, “It is written again, ‘You shall not tempt the Lord your God.’”
8 Again, the devil took Him up on an exceedingly high mountain, and showed Him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory. 9 And he said to Him, “All these things I will give You if You will fall down and worship me.”
10 Then Jesus said to him, “Away with you, Satan! For it is written, ‘You shall worship the Lord your God, and Him only you shall serve.’”

After reading this, in the light of the lesser of two evils I saw that Jesus was told that He had to choose between hunger or misusing power, between saving His reputation or tempting God, and between material and earthly gain or doing good. It was at this point as a follower of Christ that I decided to no longer choose evil in any circumstance that was in my control. Choosing the lesser of two evils is still choosing evil.

For me it has cost me a lot of time seeking Him. It has cost me the ridicule and hate mail I have received because of my decisions. That is ok. I may have lost the world, but I sleep well at night.


Pastor Duke

This article was first published on my website Taber's Truths

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