The Knowledge of Good and Evil in Children

The Knowledge of Good and Evil in Children February 22, 2016

February 22, 2016

Deuteronomy 1:39

The children who grew up knowing God‘s deliverance from Egypt were young. They were so young that they did not know good from evil. Implied in this statement is the idea that at the beginning of life, we are born with the lack of knowledge between good and evil. Good and evil must be taught. At some point, a person recognizes evil for what it is and chooses it. No one ever exempts themselves from evil. They don’t always choose the good. Instead, they choose to follow their own desires, and neglect God’s will.

God desires that children learn good from Him. Yet, this statement shows that if left to themselves, the people would teach their children evil. Out of fear that they would be destroyed, the parents did not trust God to deliver them. They did not see the goodness in God which He would use to save them. Instead, they feared what was in front of them. Even though God provides a new leader, Joshua to lead them into the Promised Land (Deuteronomy 1:38), the people won’t trust God. It would take children who now don’t know good from evil to enter God’s promise.

Although children are born into a sinful environment, they are born ignorant of it. This is why babies who die while in the womb are immediately taken to Heaven. Children are not born with inherit knowledge of good and evil. They lack the understanding until and age when they become aware of good and evil. This good and evil (defined by God) comes at different times for different people. It depends upon culture, family hosting, location, upbringing as well as other factors. The knowledge of good and evil in children changes when they are taught they difference by someone, or when they see the difference and become aware of it.

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