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Monday, August 27, 2012

Meditations on Maliciousness

If a malicious person can disguise himself..., how can he be “exposed”? (Serendipity Bible, 10th Anniversary Edition, page 921).

Malicious: Marked by deep ill will; deliberately harmful []

A malicious person is exposed by the harm they do. The extent of the maliciousness of those opposed to Jesus was dramatically evidenced by the crucifixion. Unfortunately, typically maliciousness is exposed only after the harm is done. Intent alone is easily concealed or applied insidiously.

If we choose to look at the typical sources of malice we need look no further than the Beatitudes—which turn the hurtful conventional wisdom of the world on its head and show by contrast the essential nature of malice:

Blessed are the poor in spirit,
  for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are those who mourn,
  for they will be comforted.
Blessed are the meek,
  for they will inherit the earth.
Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness,
  for they will be filled.
Blessed are the merciful,
  for they will be shown mercy.
Blessed are the pure in heart,
  for they will see God.
Blessed are the peacemakers,
  for they will be called children of God.
Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness,
  for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. (Matthew 5:1-10 NIV)

Such are the targets of those seeking to do harm: the poor in spirit, those who mourn, the meek, those that hunger and thirst for righteousness, the merciful, the pure in heart, the peacemakers. Such people are often the butt of maliciousness and therefore are persecuted for righteousness sake. In short, maliciousness is characteristic of the ways of the world and includes: haughtiness of spirit, inflicting pain with exultation, greedily proud, seekers of evil, lusting after selfish interests, the deceitful, the sowers of wrath.

The righteous most often expose maliciousness by being its victims for they are quite intentionally opposed to retaliation in kind. The righteous absorb venom and emanate from their suffering a healing balm.

This represents a maddening state of affairs that will not end until the fullness of time when peace comes and warfare among the malicious ends.

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