Question: You teach that God is not the creator of evil....Hear God: “I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the Lord do all these things” (Is 45:7)....The reason, of course, is that the creation is a step-down process....The Creator is perfectly cyclic whereas creation is semicyclic. All those with eternal life have shortfall and must be with Christ to get eternal life from Him. They must be “added to” from time to time as there is no immortality in themselves; only God is immortal....Perhaps you will answer this in your newsletter, for God tells us that He creates evil.
Response: First of all, God is not “perfectly cyclic,” whatever you mean by that, for He says, “I am the Lord, I change not” (Mal:3:6). As for having eternal life “added to” Christians, that is an impossibility. Eternal life is complete, everlasting, and nothing can be added to it or taken away; it doesn’t wane, lessen or wear out—nor do those who have received eternal life and belong to Christ need to have anything “added” but are complete for eternity.
Secondly, the Hebrew word here translated “evil” is ra, which does not mean moral evil but primarily disasters or trials which God creates from time to time for discipline or punishment. But even if the subject is moral evil, the verse you quote has the answer within itself. God “creates” evil the same way that He “creates” darkness. Darkness is not a “thing” which God makes. It is revealed by light to be the absence of light. In the same way, “evil” is not a “thing” that God creates with any existence in itself. Sin is defined as coming “short of the glory of God” (Rom:3:23)—and it is God’s perfect holiness which reveals evil by contrast.
Christ declared, “...out of the heart of men, proceed evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, murders, thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lasciviousness, an evil eye, blasphemy, pride, foolishness: All these evil things come from within, and defile the man” (Mk 7:21-23). God only “creates” evil in the same way that light “creates” darkness—by exposing it for what it is by His holiness. He is not the cause of evil or wickedness, which comes from the heart of man. Evil is likened to darkness many times in Scripture. And we are told that “God is light, and in him is no darkness at all” (1 Jn:1:5).