Proverbs 16:4-5 “The LORD hath made all [things] for himself: yea, even the wicked for the day of evil. Every one [that is] proud in heart [is] an abomination to the LORD: [though] hand [join] in hand, he shall not be unpunished.”
Psalm 14:2-3 “The LORD looked down from heaven upon the children of men, to see if there were any that did understand, [and] seek God. They are all gone aside, they are [all] together become filthy: [there is] none that doeth good, no, not one.”
The verses in Proverbs 16 say that the wicked are proud in their heart but the LORD also made them this way. And it says that the proud (wicked) shall not be unpunished. And as Psalm 14 also says, every person is “wicked” at some point because every person has pride in their heart in some way and in some fashion. So the LORD hath made every person for their “day of evil”. Man in this world is made [by the LORD] to be proud [or wicked], and so humility must be learned so true evil (pride) can be acknowledged and understood. It says the LORD makes everything, and he makes man and man must have to learn and find something.
Proverbs 16:17-19 “The highway of the upright [is] to depart from evil: he that keepeth his way preserveth his soul. Pride [goeth] before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall. Better [it is to be] of an humble spirit with the lowly, than to divide the spoil with the proud.”
Before the “day of evil” and “destruction” and “before a fall”, man has pride. Pride has a purpose and man is made with pride. And it can teach man what not to do after he is on the ground if he is willing to learn and change.
James 4:6, 10-12 “But he giveth more grace. Wherefore he saith, God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace unto the humble. ... Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up. Speak not evil one of another, brethren. He that speaketh evil of [his] brother, and judgeth his brother, speaketh evil of the law, and judgeth the law: but if thou judge the law, thou art not a doer of the law, but a judge. There is one lawgiver, who is able to save and to destroy: who art thou that judgest another?”
These verses in James imply that being prideful goes hand in hand with judging and then criticizing others. But it is the act of judging someone else as is bad or lower in some way that makes the person doing the judging the “evil” one. This is somewhat backwards to what man’s prideful thoughts and understanding supposes within himself. So it says judging someone as evil does nothing but make the person doing the judging…well…evil.
God is resistant to the proud. The word resist here in James means to oppose. To be proud is to oppose God and his true way. Remember the LORD makes everyone, and it says to stop judging what and who the LORD has made. The LORD creates it all and everyone for “himself”. It says man does not really have insight into what the “law” really means when they try to use it to criticize what the LORD has created and made. The law does not say to judge others, but rather it is says the opposite. It says to love others regardless of what a person perceives in their heart the other person to be. It says to remember that the LORD has made them, so deal with it [in a loving way]. So to follow the “law” of the LORD means to have no judgment of others or what he has created and allowed them to be, with only humility within one’s self.
Luke 18:9-14 “And he spake this parable unto certain which trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and despised others: Two men went up into the temple to pray; the one a Pharisee, and the other a publican. The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, God, I thank thee, that I am not as other men [are], extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this publican. I fast twice in the week, I give tithes of all that I possess. And the publican, standing afar off, would not lift up so much as [his] eyes unto heaven, but smote upon his breast, saying, God be merciful to me a sinner. I tell you, this man went down to his house justified [rather] than the other: for every one that exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted.”
So to be justified, one must have humility and not compare one’s own supposed “goodness” against another’s “evilness”. It says people do not have true insight into the meaning of the law when they judge by it, rather than live by it, and in so doing think themselves more righteous than others. So again following the law requires humility and no judgment or criticism of others or placing oneself higher than others. And doing this takes a complete paradigm shift in man’s heart of who and what the LORD may be to this world, and what God may be.
Philippians 2:3-4 “[Let] nothing [be done] through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves. Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others.”
1 Samuel 16:7 “But the LORD said unto Samuel, Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature; because I have refused him: for [the LORD seeth] not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the LORD looketh on the heart.”
2 Corinthians 10:7 “Do ye look on things after the outward appearance? If any man trust to himself that he is Christ's, let him of himself think this again, that, as he [is] Christ's, even so [are] we Christ's.”
To be justified and to “follow the law” is the opposite of what people typically think. When someone is vain or exalts themselves for what they think they are doing right or better than others, they are actually being “wicked” [according to the Bible] in doing this very thing and are opposed to God due to prideful thinking. So it says people should instead look at others and find something (i.e. the power of Christ) in them that is better or more powerful than themselves, or has the potential. And that each person should do this reciprocally so that each person lives in humility and so no one is better than another in totality. So everyone has the potential power of Christ. The power of God is in all persons because it says the LORD creates everyone and all things. When someone “looks on the things of others” they see their heart and the power [given and made by the LORD] that they also contain, and that it is indeed “better” (i.e. more powerful) than that same thing in the person doing the looking. This is done without criticizing the person or their power. Remember what it says in Isaiah “I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the LORD do all these things.” And also remember what is also says in Romans “Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good.”. Seeking the power of Christ is seeking and finding the power of God. These sayings teaches man to use the power the LORD has given man to overcome what should be overcome.
Although someone may judge or decipher another as bad or good, there can be no criticism or condemnation because the LORD hath made it all. So if someone criticizes another person they are in essence criticizing or condemning God. And if someone condemns another for being what they think is “evil” they are judging by the law rather than loving as the law says to do. So without judgment (i.e. criticism or condemnation) we are to overcome any thing we think is evil with good, which means we pray for and do good things to our enemies and look for and seek out the power of God within them. And this how it says someone can overcome “evil”, which it says is also made by God.
Matthew 5:44-45 “But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you; That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust.”
Luke 6:35-36 “But love ye your enemies, and do good, and lend, hoping for nothing again; and your reward shall be great, and ye shall be the children of the Highest: for he is kind unto the unthankful and [to] the evil. Be ye therefore merciful, as your Father also is merciful.”
Matthew 5:48 “Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.”
The LORD does not condemn or criticize. The LORD is kind to everyone yet also sends rain on everyone. The LORD sees the heart of man and sees whether he forgives and loves others regardless of what is seen on the outside. Because if someone understands that all come from the same God (see 1John 4:20) then they will love and forgive because all come from the same source and are one.
Romans 2:1-11 “Therefore thou art inexcusable, O man, whosoever thou art that judgest: for wherein thou judgest another, thou condemnest thyself; for thou that judgest doest the same things. But we are sure that the judgment of God is according to truth against them which commit such things. And thinkest thou this, O man, that judgest them which do such things, and doest the same, that thou shalt escape the judgment of God? Or despisest thou the riches of his goodness and forbearance and longsuffering; not knowing that the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance? But after thy hardness and impenitent heart treasurest up unto thyself wrath against the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God; Who will render to every man according to his deeds: To them who by patient continuance in well doing seek for glory and honour and immortality, eternal life: But unto them that are contentious, and do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness, indignation and wrath, Tribulation and anguish, upon every soul of man that doeth evil, of the Jew first, and also of the Gentile; But glory, honour, and peace, to every man that worketh good, to the Jew first, and also to the Gentile: For there is no respect of persons with God.”
The verses above in Romans 2 say that there is no respect of person with God, but when a person judges another person than they too will be judged [“by the righteous judgment of God”]. Which is to say people get what they give and God will “render to every man according to his deeds” which means that if a person condemns others for what they presume they are doing wrong, all this does is cause the person who is doing the condemning to recognize and condemn their own faults [during their own day of judgment]; which means if they do not forgive others then how could they ever be rightfully forgiven. It is within each person’s own heart and within their own power of God where condemnation resides. So it is not so much what one is doing wrong, because that is simply relative to what each individual believes to be allowed in their own heart, but it is how much one is judging and condemning others that matters which has an impact in one’s own freedom, which is contrary to the popular belief and action of the world. To be a child of the “highest” means to love and have the power of forgiveness to the highest level. So;
2 Timothy 2:24-26 “And the servant of the Lord must not strive; but be gentle unto all [men], apt to teach, patient, In meekness instructing those that oppose themselves; if God peradventure will give them repentance to the acknowledging of the truth; And [that] they may recover themselves out of the snare of the devil, who are taken captive by him at his will.”
1 Peter 5:2-3 “Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight [thereof], not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind; Neither as being lords over [God's] heritage, but being ensamples to the flock.”
If someone thinks they have truth, they are to be an example of that truth and not preach it to those around them, but to live it so that others may see how it works. Forgiveness and peace is learned by example. So this is saying don’t criticize others for what you think they are doing wrong, but rather lead by example and forgive and love so that others may learn to do the same.
But what is this “snare of the devil” spoken of here that has trapped people?
1 Timothy 1:12-16 “And I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who hath enabled me, for that he counted me faithful, putting me into the ministry; Who was before a blasphemer, and a persecutor, and injurious: but I obtained mercy, because I did [it] ignorantly in unbelief. And the grace of our Lord was exceeding abundant with faith and love which is in Christ Jesus. This [is] a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners; of whom I am chief. Howbeit for this cause I obtained mercy, that in me first Jesus Christ might shew forth all longsuffering, for a pattern to them which should hereafter believe on him to life everlasting.”
Here in 1 Timothy is says that Paul says that he was before a blasphemer, a persecutor, and injurious (sinner snared by the devil). What do these words mean that describe him as sinner in the mind of Christ? Well the word blasphemer, from Strong’s, means “speaking evil, slanderous, reproachful, railing, abusive”. So a “sinner” [as defined here in the Bible] is someone who speaks evil of others and persecutes them. And the word “injurious” here, from Strong’s, means “one who, uplifted with pride, either heaps insulting language upon others or does them some shameful act of wrong”.
So Paul says the sinner or someone who is “snared by the devil” is someone who is lifted up with pride and then speaks slanderous words about other people, judging them by their own prideful, better than though attitude, thinking and acting like they are better than the other persons by the manner of hurtful words coming out of their mouth about others. It implies that this is the evil world that needs to be overcome.
So the moral of this story is that people should learn to pray for others instead of judging them and people should learn to be an example of humility instead of preaching to or about others; where praying for others means someone looks for and sees the power of God within others and dwells on that rather than what they presume they are doing wrong through the criticism and judgment of the world. So that in so doing one may be forgiven as well through their own power that God has given them. Be an example of humility and pray for fellow man; which means to seek out and pray for the power of Christ, the power of God spoken of in Psalm 14:2, that is within one another, doing so with all sincerity rather than preaching at or about them. And this is the “good” that overcomes the world of “evil”.