Concurrent to my devotional and Bible study I have been working through How Long, O Lord? Reflections on Suffering and Evil, by D. A. Carson. When I read 2 Samuel 12:9 this passage came to mind:
The ultimate measure of evil is the wrath of God (Rom. 1:18ff.), and that wrath is so resolute that it issues in the cross. We are all “by nature deserving of wrath” (Eph. 2:3): apart from the cross, there is no hope for any of us.For me to disobey, lust, covet, not to love, is sin, despising God’s Word, and by extension, God.
In this primal sense, then, evil is evil because it is rebellion against God. Evil is the failure to do what God demands or the performance of what God forbids. Not to love God with heart and soul and mind and strength is a great evil, for God has demanded it; not to love our neighbor as ourself is a great evil, for the same reason. To covet someone’s house or car or wife is a great evil, for God has forbidden covetousness; to nurture bitterness and self-pity is evil, for a similar reason. The dimensions of evil are thus established by the dimensions of God; the ugliness of evil is established by the beauty of God; the filth of evil is established by the purity of God; the selfishness of evil is established by the love of God.
(D. A. Carson, How Long, O Lord? Reflections on Suffering and Evil, 2nd ed. (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Academic, 2006), 42.)
James 4:17 reinforces this. In Psalm 51:4, David declares that his disobedience is against God, he despised God and His Word.
This is hard. It is especially hard when someone sins against or betrays me. I have to respond to them in God’s grace or I become engaged in despising Him and His Word.
I am in dire need of His grace to live like this.