WHEREFORE THINK YE EVIL?
“And Jesus knowing their thoughts said, Wherefore think ye evil in your hearts?” Matthew 9:4
Jesus had just healed a sick man and promised him forgiveness of sins. How can anyone find fault with that? The Word of God says that certain scribes “said within themselves, This man blasphemeth” (Matthew 9:3). The scribes were disturbed over the fact that Jesus said to this man, “thy sins be forgiven thee” (9:2). They did not agree with Jesus offering forgiveness of sins. They rejected the truth that Jesus was God, and therefore, had the power and authority to forgive sins. Their prejudice against Him blinded them to the obvious evidence that He was God. The miracles He performed should have convinced any honest seeker that Jesus was the Christ. Jesus addressed the wickedness of their hearts, saying, “Wherefore think ye evil in your hearts?”
This is such a great question. The word “wherefore” means “why”? Why did they think such hateful thoughts? Why did they find such fault with His gracious acts? Why could they not rejoice in His miracles? I have often wondered why some people seem to be so dominated by critical thoughts. Like the scribes, they cannot rejoice in God’s goodness and what He is doing because of their obsession with “evil.” As hard as it is for people to admit, there are those who are driven by this same ambition. They are always finding something to be negative about because they are always looking for things to be negative about. These scribes represent that kind of person.
There is something desperately wrong when people who are in the presence of God’s wondrous work find themselves dominated by critical and negative thoughts. It is not healthy when someone cannot appreciate the positive because of his obsession with negative thoughts. The longer a person has been in such a habit of thinking, the more difficult it may be to change, but it can be done. God is in the business of transforming our lives; this includes the way we think. As much as we may like to, we cannot change the way other people think. We must, however, take charge of the way we think. If we would be honest and watchful, we would realize that negative, critical, or unbelieving thoughts often seek residence in our minds. It is our duty to recognize these thoughts that are “evil” and reject them.