President Biden got it right. He used theological words in condemning the attack on Israel.
“You know, there are moments in this life when the pure, unadulterated evil is unleashed on this world,” he said. “The people of Israel lived through one such moment this weekend. The bloody hands of the terrorist organization Hamas — a group whose stated purpose for being is to kill Jews. This was an act of sheer evil.” His enumerated list of atrocities in that speech was not the end of the carnage.
Another world leader agrees with Biden’s characterization of the pogrom against Jews. “These innocents were killed for one single reason — for being Jewish and living in the State of Israel,” said European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen. “It is an ancient evil, which reminds us of the darkest past and shocks all of us to the core.”
Atheist Richard Dawkins doesn’t agree with the language of evil. In the past he wrote, “The universe we observe has precisely the properties we should expect if there is, at bottom, no design, no purpose, no evil and no good, nothing but blind pitiless indifference.” No evil? Really? The irony is that we do see design, purpose, evil and good in the universe. Isn’t that evidence for a Creator?
Of course it is. To call something “evil” is to assume the existence of a moral law. If no moral law exists, defining evil can only be an opinion or a preference. But when informed people condemn acts of violence as unadulterated evil, they appeal to a universal moral law embedded in the human soul. It defies logic that a material universe could produce such a sense of right, wrong, and justice. So, you must conclude that the presence of a moral law implies a moral lawgiver who stands apart from the material universe. Now you are looking into the face of God, your Creator, who wired you to know good and evil, right and wrong. God is the moral lawgiver. So when you call something “evil” you are using the language of God. If there is no God, then the best you can offer is a pitiless opinion about what terrorists and their supporters do.
Jesus, God the Son, came to this earth to overcome suffering and evil. That’s why the cross is such good news for you about life. “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy,” Jesus said. “I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly” (John 10:10). What a contrast between the one who kills and the One who gives eternal life! And if unadulterated, sheer, ancient evil continues like the world has seen of late, God help us. Maranatha! Come Lord Jesus.