David’s affair with Bathsheba not only resulted in the conception and subsequent death of a child, but also in the introduction of evil into David’s family. When he rebuked David, Nathan the prophet stated:
“Thus says the Lord, the God of Israel, ‘I anointed you king over Israel, and I delivered you out of the hand of Saul. And I gave you your master’s house and your master’s wives into your arms and gave you the house of Israel and of Judah. And if this were too little, I would add to you as much more. Why have you despised the word of the Lord, to do what is evil in his sight? You have struck down Uriah the Hittite with the sword and have taken his wife to be your wife and have killed him with the sword of the Ammonites. Now therefore the sword shall never depart from your house, because you have despised me and have taken the wife of Uriah the Hittite to be your wife.’ Thus says the Lord, ‘Behold, I will raise up evil against you out of your own house. And I will take your wives before your eyes and give them to your neighbor, and he shall lie with your wives in the sight of this sun. For you did it secretly, but I will do this thing before all Israel and before the sun.’” (2 Samuel 12:7-12)
Nathan indicated that David had done what was evil in God’s sight and that God would raise up evil against David out of his own house. The Hebrew word raʿ (rah), which means bad or evil, “combines together in one the wicked deed and its consequences. It generally indicates the rough exterior of wrongdoing as a breach of harmony, and as breaking up of what is good and desirable in man and in society. While the prominent characteristic of the godly is lovingkindness (H2617), one of the most marked features of the ungodly man is that his course is an injury both to himself and to everyone around him” (H7451).
The moral degeneration that followed David’s transgression was first noticed in the rape of his daughter Tamar. David’s oldest son Amnon was in love with his step-sister and “was so tormented that he made himself ill because of his sister Tamar, for she was a virgin, and it seemed impossible to Amnon to do anything to her” (2 Samuel 13:2). Amnon’s cousin Jonadab helped him to craft a plot to trap Tamar and rape her in his own house (2 Samuel 13:5-6). Afterward, 2 Samuel 13:15 tells us, “Then Amnon hated her with very great hatred, so that the hatred with which he hated her was greater than the love with which he had loved her. When David was told what had happened, it says in 2 Samuel 13:21-22, “he was very angry. But Absalom spoke neither good nor bad, for Absalom hated Amnon because he had violated his sister Tamar.” Two years later, Absalom invited his half-brother to a party, and when his heart was merry with wine, Absalom ordered his servants to kill Amnon (2 Samuel 13:28-29).
An actively bad person is referred to in the Bible as the wicked or the ungodly. This kind of person is “guilty enough to deserve punishment (Deuteronomy 25:2)” (H7563). The rashaʾ is guilty of hostility to God and His people. Writing about the wicked in Psalm 36, David said:
Transgression speaks to the wicked
deep in his heart;
there is no fear of God
before his eyes.
For he flatters himself in his own eyes
that his iniquity cannot be found out and hated.
The words of his mouth are trouble and deceit;
he has ceased to act wisely and do good.
He plots trouble while on his bed;
he sets himself in a way that is not good;
he does not reject evil. (Psalm 36:1-4)
David said that the wicked sets himself in a way that is not good and he does not reject evil. What David meant was that the wicked like the idea of hurting other people. The wicked want to cause pain and suffering.
Jesus differentiated the wicked from members of God’s kingdom and used the example of a tree bearing fruit to identify the way you can tell the condition of a person’s heart (Matthew 12:33). Jesus said, “The good person out of his good treasure brings forth good and the evil person out of his evil treasure brings forth evil” (Matthew 12:35). Jesus said “on the day of judgment people will give account for every careless word they speak, for by your words you will be justified and by your words you will be condemned” (Matthew 12:36). The Greek word that is translated give account, logos (logˊ-os) means “something said” (G3056) and is used in John 1:1-18 to refer to Jesus’ divine nature. Logos is the reasoning faculty as that power of the soul which is the basis of speech.
In order to deal with the eternal aspect of the consequences of sin, Jesus told two parable that specifically mentioned a wicked or evil one who was competing for ownership of believers’ hearts. Jesus said “When anyone hears the word of the kingdom and does not understand it, the evil one comes and snatches away what was sown in his heart” (Matthew 13:18). Jesus went on to explain in his parable of the weeds that an intentional effort was being made to disrupt the establishment of the kingdom of heaven. In his explanation, Jesus specifically stated that the evil one is the devil and that he is trying to hinder the development of God’s kingdom by sowing his followers among God’s people (Matthew 13:37-39). Even though both were allowed to grow side by side until the harvest, the wicked were removed at harvest time. Jesus said, “Just as the weeds are gathered and burned with fire, so will it be at the end of the age. The Son of Man will send his angels and they will gather out of his kingdom all causes of sin and all law-breakers, and throw them into the fiery furnace. In that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth” (Matthew 13:40-42)