excerpts from Wayne Greeson
“All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing.” (Edmund Burke)
So much of the history of the struggle between good and evil can be explained by Edmund Burke’s observation. Time and again those who profess to be good seem to clearly outnumber those who are evil, yet those who are evil seem to prevail far too often. Seldom is it the numbers that determine the outcome, but whether those who claim to be good men are willing to stand up and fight for what they know to be right. There are numerous examples of this sad and awful scenario being played out over and over again in the scriptures.
They Get Nothing Good Done
When good men do nothing, they get nothing good done. The Lord commands his people to do good (Luke 6:35; Eph. 2:10). Christ “gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works” (Titus 2:14).
In the parable of the talents, Jesus described a man who did nothing. When he received his Lord’s money, he “went and digged in the earth, and hid his Lord’s money” (Matt. 25:18). When his Lord returned, he returned to the Lord just what he had been given (Matt. 25:25). Notice, the servant did not do any outright evil, such as stealing the money, but then neither did he do anything good. He did nothing and he got nothing good accomplished. Jesus said he was a “wicked and slothful servant” (Matt. 25:26).
Jesus rebuked the church at Laodicea for doing nothing. “I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot. So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth. Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked” (Rev. 3:15-17).
Too many Christians and too many are doing very little good. They are standing idly by, they are mere spectators. They sit on the sidelines instead of actively participating and working for the good. If good wins, they join in the celebration though they did nothing to produce the victory. If evil wins, they will complain long and loud though their own apathy helped produce the undesirable result.
When Jesus found a fig tree with “nothing thereon, but leaves only” He cursed the tree and “presently the fig tree withered away” (Matt. 21:19). John the baptist warned, “And now also the axe is laid unto the root of the trees: therefore every tree which bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire” (Matt. 3:10; John 15:2).
They Help Evil To Triumph
When good men do nothing, evil triumphs. Evil, sin and sinful men must be opposed. God commands those who are good, not just to avoid evil but actively oppose it.
“And do not participate in the unfruitful deeds of darkness, but instead even expose them; for it is disgraceful even to speak of the things which are done by them in secret. (Eph. 5:11,12). Those who do nothing about sin and evil, help the sin and evil to prevail. One who is silent when there are those around him in sin becomes a partaker with them (Eph. 5:7).
In the days of Elijah, the silence of many had allowed the evil of Ahab and Jezebel to prevail throughout the land of Israel. “And Elijah came unto all the people, and said, How long halt ye between two opinions? If the Lord be God, follow him: but if Baal, then follow him. And the people answered him not a word” (1 Kings 18:21). The silence of the people spoke volumes of their indecisiveness and inaction. Their failure to stand up, speak up and speak out permitted wicked and evil men to run rampant.
Jesus told of a traveler who was robbed, beaten and left him half dead. The men who did this were wicked and did a very wicked thing. But the Levite and priest allowed this evil to continue unanswered by doing nothing as they each “passed by on the other side” (Luke 10:31-32). Fortunately for the traveler there was one man, a Samaritan, who was willing to stand up for what was right (Luke 10:33-36).
Jesus warned “He that is not with me is against me; and he that gathereth not with me scattereth abroad” (Matt. 12:30). In the fight against evil there is no middle ground, no gray area, no neutrality. Those who are not actively and vigorously fighting against evil are helping evil to triumph.
Do we love the good?
When good men do nothing, they must not really love the good. They must love other things other than their Lord, for they have made these other things the priority of their lifestyle. Many have the mistaken notion that good is merely the absence of doing that which is wrong. Not so! One is good not merely because he does no evil, but because he is actively working for what is good. “Let him eschew evil, and do good” (1 Pet. 3:11). James explained, “Therefore to him that knoweth to do good, and doeth it not, to him it is sin” (James 4:17).
Jesus said we must work while it is still day, since there will come a time when we can’t work (John 4:9). Paul called us to redeem the time because of evil (Eph. 5:16).
I fear that we have taken the blessings of good things and become imbalanced in our lifestyle with regard to them. While we are enjoying a good TV show or night of recreation Satan’s kids are working hard to take our nation away from us. I pray that we will return to the works of Jesus, the first works. The gentile church is called to bring Jesus the fruit He deserves (Matt. 21:43).
Our confession must be the same as the Lords, “I must be about my fathers business…” (Luke 2:49.
Are we visiting the sick?
Are we clothing the needy?
Are we voting?
Are we embracing high levels of responsibility in culture, in our business, in our community?
Are we in prayer each day?
Are we delivering any captives?
Are we delivering any groceries?
Are we caring for the orphan or the abandoned?
Are we visiting those in prison?
Are we counseling the discouraged?
What is your intentional expression of GOOD? Make a plan, work your plan and become accountable to those who will coach you. This too is the spirit of Elijah that God is stirring in the Church today.
Enough with Jezebel !