In Regards to Evil, Be Infants


Nevertheless, God’s solid foundation stands firm, sealed with this inscription: “The Lord knows those who are his,” and, “Everyone who confesses the name of the Lord must turn away from wickedness.”

In a large house there are articles not only of gold and silver, but also of wood and clay; some are for special purposes and some for common use.

Those who cleanse themselves from the latter will be instruments for special purposes, made holy, useful to the Master and prepared to do any good work.

Flee the evil desires of youth and pursue righteousness, faith, love and peace, along with those who call on the Lord out of a pure heart.

II Timothy 2:19-22

In I Corinthians 14:20, there’s a small phrase, easy to miss, but it holds an important truth.

It says this: “In regards to evil, be infants.”

When it comes to the evil around us, we should be like children. Worldly evil is something that we should be naive about. It is something of which we should be inexperienced, unfamiliar, and not something we have spent a lot of time around.

Think about that phrase for just a moment: In regards to evil, be like little children.

What would that look like?

There are some people who have taken an attitude toward sin of, “How am I going to know what sin is like, unless I expose myself to it?” Or “How am I going to reach people living worldly lives without partaking in the world myself?” Even “I will be excluded from those relationships if I don’t participate in the same things as they do.”

Paul’s response to that thinking is that is not the way to go. That is not the way to be a mature follower of Christ effective in expanding His kingdom. We’re not supposed to dip our toes into evil to know it. We’re meant to stay as far away from it as possible. And this life, set apart and different, will draw more people to Christ than if you choose to as the world.

Unfortunately, when it comes to this, many of us are fully familiar with the world. Think about it. We watch the same TV shows, listen to the same music, speak the same words, use the same shortcuts to get ahead, even pursue many of the same things as the goal of life.

But Paul’s challenge to “be infants in regard to evil” is a radical call to live differently. It’s a wake-up call that we’re not just meant to lightly engage with the world’s ways, we are to avoid them altogether.

It would be wise for all of us to evaluate, as individuals, how we are doing in this area. Are we indistinguishable from the world? Or are we making choices that set us apart, that keep us innocent in the face of evil?

It’s a challenging path, but it’s the one we’re called to walk.


Heavenly Father, give me a passion and desire for you greater than the things of this world. May I be so focused on knowing and serving you, that there remains no energy for partaking in the world and its offerings. By your grace, in regards to evil, help me to be an infant. Amen.