Proverbs 1:16 For their feet run to evil, and make haste to shed blood.
Mala in se is a term that signifies crime that is considered wrong in and of itself. The phrase is Latin and literally means wrong in itself or evil in itself.
It is baffling to me that laws have to be written for some of the most obvious heinous crimes; child slavery, prostitution, abandonment and violence. Imagine, someone actually has to be told that it is evil to beat a baby to death. They do not have the understanding that it is evil in itself to do such a thing. How tragic the human condition that is prevalent in this earth.
I was reading some of Philip Yancey’s books and he writes about some people in India who deform and cripple children on purpose for the sake of making pitiful beggars of them so that they can bring in some money. Think about it. These people who do this to children have to be instructed that this is an evil practice; therefore, it is mala in se. I like to think that I live in a better world than that, but it is not so. A world that has concentration camps, inquisitions and segregation in its history is the real world I live in.
The world is influenced by the devil and his wish for mankind is death and destruction, no matter how horrible or tragic the end result is. Jesus said it plainly about the devil’s nature. John 10:10 The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.
When reading some of the old testament laws I sometimes say out loud, “Really Lord, you had to write laws and explain to people that they should not have intercourse with animals or their immediate family members.” Is the human condition that pathetic? It must be because God says, “Don’t do what the Canaanites do as normal living.”
A list of instructions is given in Leviticus Chapter 18 that would make commonsense shriek and wonder why this would have to be explained. However, it had to be written so that it would be obeyed. Lev. 18:3 Do not do what the people of Egypt do. You used to live there. And do not do what the people of Canaan do. I am bringing you into their land. Do not follow their practices.
These things I have just written about are obviously wrong to most of us. What about the small things that we do on a daily basis? Do we become dulled to the warnings of our conscience that is telling us what we are doing is not acceptable to God? The small lies at work. The stealing of time and goods from work. Shirking from doing a job right. Holding love back from your spouse and children because of a slight you felt you did not deserve. These so-called small sins can turn into adultery, larceny, embezzlement and sloth on a major scale to the point that it is odiously mala in se. Gen. 4:7 If you do what is right, will you not be accepted? But if you do not do what is right, sin is crouching at your door; it desires to have you, but you must rule over it.
The man who is locked up in prison for embezzling the company did not set out overnight to do so. It started with small thefts that he got away with. The woman or man caught up in an adulterous affair did not set out to bring such hurtful pain to their spouse. Their original heart was not a desire to break their vows made before God and man. No, it started off by wandering eyes and feelings that were not kept under control, resulting in the lust of the eye and the craving of the soul.
The result of yielding to small improprieties will eventually bring in a world of hurt. James 1:15 Then, after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, gives birth to death. What seems controllable and a small indiscretion becomes uncontrolled habitual bondage ruining lives. Just ask anyone who attends Alcohol’s Anonymous. It started with one small cocktail, night-cap, or one for the road until the need for a drink was the most important thing in the universe.
Hurricanes first announce themselves on small scout clouds. Something that has become mala in se in our life most likely announced itself as a bit of sinful pleasure or just a bit of fun and relaxation. We cannot outsmart sin, because the wages of it is still death; no matter how strong and clever you think you are. Jesus is the only one who overcame sin and death. This is why He is the only way through this corrupted world system. John 14:6 Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”
Whatever it is that has control of your soul in this life, hand it over to the Lord who knows you and what you need to be healed and delivered. God has us in the palm of His hand. God loves us so much. Amen.