Did God create Evil?

To understand what God is saying through Isaiah (in Isaiah 45:7), we have to get the context right. By going back to Isa 44:24 God is saying that He created all things and therefore He can do with them as He pleases. Note verse 28:

28, That saith of Cyrus, He is my shepherd, and shall perform all my pleasure: even saying to Jerusalem, Thou shalt be built; and to the temple, Thy foundation shall be laid.

Here God calls Cyrus by name over 150 years before he came to be king of the Medes and the Persians The Babylonians under Nebuchadnezzar took the Jews of Judah captive in 606 BC for a period of 70 years. The Medes and the Persians overthrew Babylon and then had charge of all the Jews that were in captivity. In 536 BC Cyrus who was then King released all of the Jews and gave them the resources to rebuild the city of Jerusalem, thus fulfilling the prophecy foretold in Isaiah 44:28-45:4.

Cyrus being a Midian was raised according to the Magian religeon, which prevailed in Persia in the time of Cyrus, and in which probably he was educated, that there are two supreme, co-eternal, and independent causes always acting in opposition one to the other; one the author of all good, the other of all evil. The good being what they called LIGHT; the evil being, DARKNESS. That when LIGHT had the ascendant, then good and happiness prevailed among men; when DARKNESS had the superiority, then evil and misery abounded. An opinion that contradicts the clearest evidence of our reason, which plainly leads us to the acknowledgment of one only Supreme Being, infinitely good as well as powerful. With reference to this absurd opinion, held by the person to whom this prophecy is addressed, God, by his prophet, in the most significant terms, asserts his omnipotence and absolute supremacy:- (Adam Clarke Comm)

God is the creator of all things, but all that He created was good: Gen 1:31, And God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good. And the evening and the morning were the sixth day.

God made everything good. The opposite of good is in our language bad or evil. God did not create evil or bad for the sake of evil but rather it came into being as a result of Satan causing Adam and Eve to violate what God had commanded.

In Isaiah 44:24-45:7 God is telling Cyrus ‘I am the creator of all things and there is not another God beside me.’ Even though God created all things good, when man rejects the goodness of God and does the opposite then evil or bad comes into being.

The Hebrew term -ra- in Isa 45:7 is translated evil but sometimes it is translated -bad- and bad is not always evil. Following are some verses translating -ra- as bad

Isa 45: 7 I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the LORD do all these things.

Gen 24:50, Then Labanand Bethuel answered and said, The thing proceedeth from the LORD: we cannot speak unto thee bad or good.

Gen 31:24, And Godcameto Labanthe Syrianin a dreamby night, and saidunto him, Take heedthat thou speak not to Jacob either good or bad. {either…: Heb. from good to bad}

Gen 31:29 It is in the power of my hand to do you hurt: but the God of your father spake unto me yesternight, saying, Take thou heed that thou speak not to Jacob either good or bad.

Lev 24: 10 He shall not alter it, nor change it, a good for a bad, or a bad for a good: and if he shall at all change beast for beast, then it and the exchange thereof shall be holy.

Lev 27: 12 And the priest shall value it, whether it be good or bad: as thou valuest it, who art the priest, so shall it be. {as…: Heb. according to thy estimation, O priest, etc}

 

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