Sjolander Road Fellowship

Declaring the God of Unconditional Love

renounce or condemn


Renounce- to reject and stop using

Condemn- to criticize or publicly reject and censure

In reacting to perceived evil, I consider the difference between the two words, renounce and condemn. I believe there is a subtle but powerful difference between renouncing evil and condemning evil. Somewhere in that difference is found the essence of the two Adams- the Adam of the Garden and Jesus Christ, the second Adam.

The knowledge that the first Adam gained allowed for two possibilities. He could renounce evil or condemn it. Renouncing was a personal and individual decision. In condemning evil in others Adam had to embrace the need to coerce and force others to conform to his standard of righteousness. Condemnation implies law enforcement, which means inflicting pain and suffering on those to be condemned. Thus that which caused pain and suffering and therefore seen as evil had to be addressed by some other form of pain and suffering. Meeting evil with evil became the eternal paradox of human history. 

Jesus as the second Adam introduced the Jews first and then later the world at large to the concept of dealing with evil by using the Great Commandment. His answer to how to respond to evil was to respond in love. That response in no way condoned evil, but it did recognize and reject the incoherency of trying to counter evil by more evil.