Echoes from the Campfire

He knew there was no easy way, and he was not looking for one.  It was his pride that he walked his own trail, saddled his own broncs, and fought his own battles.  And he earned his own money.”
–Louis L’Amour  (The Key-Lock Man)

“And endurance develops strength of character, and character strengthens our confident hope of salvation.”
–Romans 5:4 (NLT)
“History won’t let us go and keeps repeating itself, reminding us that human condition hasn’t changed.”
 –Richard Herman, Jr.

I read something the other day that sort of surprised me, mainly the source.  I won’t go into details but the question was asked, “Is there such a thing as intentional evil?”  This person said that evil people do not truly exist, that is, people who are evil at the core.  He then used a quotation from Protagoras, “No intelligent man believes that anybody ever willingly errs or willingly does base and evil deeds; they are well aware that all who do base and evil things do them unwillingly.”
Well, my friends, I am afraid that I am going to have to disagree with this.  People purposely choose to do evil all the time.  It started way back years ago, “Then the Lord saw that the wickedness of man was great on the earth, and that every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.” (Genesis 6:5, NASB)  Man’s personal thoughts were always on evil.  Below are just a few verses that indicate that man is basically evil.  (All from NASB)

“Who with perversity in his heart continually devises evil,…” (Proverbs 6:14)
“Deceit is in the heart of those who devise evil…” (Proverbs 12:20)
“And Jesus knowing their thoughts said, ‘Why are you thinking evil in your hearts?'” (Matthew 9:4)
“The heart is more deceitful than all else And is desperately sick; Who can understand it?”  (Jeremiah 17:9)  Another version says the heart is “desperately wicked.”

Man, because of the fall, will do evil.  That does not mean that man cannot make a morally good choice.  But contrary to the good philosopher, man does purposely do “base and evil deeds…willingly.”  That is why there must be a “born-again” experience.  They must be made new, the old must be done away with.
But Jesus said, that man will fall away and not listen or see the truth.  “For the heart of this people has become dull, With their ears they scarcely hear, And they have closed their eyes, Otherwise they would see with their eyes, Hear with their ears, And understand with their heart and return, And I would heal them.” (Matthew 13:5, NASB)
Man continues on a downward spiral.  He may cry for freedom, but in reality he is seeking anarchy.  True freedom comes with a price, man cannot be autonomous if he is free.  Samuel Rutherford wrote years ago that to be free, man must be under the law.  David Jeremiah writes, “In order for fallen humans to survive in an orderly society, a moral compass by which one navigates through life is absolutely essential.”
The more man moves away from a biblical standard, the more anarchy will come to the forefront.  The more man sets himself up as autonomous, the more evil will prevail.  Man must realize that he is a sinner and come to the Savior and only He can set them free. 
“It’s a challenge.  An old teacher of mine once told me a man has to have one now and then just to know who and what he is.”
–Leonard B. Scott

This is for all of my former students.  Get it done!  The challenges of the classroom are nothing compared to the challenges that life may throw at you.  David was prepared to meet the challenge of Goliath, because he faced other challenges earlier in His life.  Part of accepting and then overcoming a challenge is to know God’s Word and use it in your life.