Evil, Evil-doer - Vine's Expository Dictionary of New Testament Words

Evil, Evil-doer

[ A-1,Adjective,G2556, kakos ]
stands for whatever is evil in character, base," in distinction (wherever the distinction is observable) from poneros (See No. 2), which indicates "what is evil in influence and effect, malignant." Kakos is the wider term and often covers the meaning of poneros. Kakos is antithetic to kalos, "fair, advisable, good in character," and to agathos, "beneficial, useful, good in act;" hence it denotes what is useless, incapable, bad; poneros is essentially antithetic to chrestos, "kind, gracious, serviceable;" hence it denotes what is destructive, injurious, evil. As evidence that poneros and kakos have much in common, though still not interchangeable, each is used of thoughts, cp. Matthew 15:19 with Mark 7:21; of speech, Matthew 5:11 with 1 Peter 3:10; of actions, 2 Timothy 4:18 with 1 Thessalonians 5:15; of man, Matthew 18:32 with Matthew 24:48.

The use of kakos may be broadly divided as follows:
(a) of what is morally or ethically "evil," whether of persons, e.g., Matthew 21:41; Matthew 24:48; Philippians 3:2; Revelation 2:2, or qualities, emotions, passions, deeds, e.g., Mark 7:21; John 18:23, John 18:30; Romans 1:30; Romans 3:8; Romans 7:19, Romans 7:21; Romans 13:4; Romans 14:20; Romans 16:19; 1 Corinthians 13:5; 2 Corinthians 13:7; 1 Thessalonians 5:15; 1 Timothy 6:10; 2 Timothy 4:14; 1 Peter 3:9, 1 Peter 3:12;
(b) of what is injurious, destructive, baneful, pernicious, e.g., Luke 16:25; Acts 16:28; Acts 28:5; Titus 1:12; James 3:8; Revelation 16:2, where kakos and poneros come in that order, "noisome and grievous." See B, No. 3. For compounds of kakos, See below.

[ A-2,Adjective,G4190, poneros ]
akin to ponos, "labor, toil," denotes "evil that causes labor, pain, sorrow, malignant evil" (See No. 1); it is used
(a) with the meaning bad, worthless, in the physical sense, Matthew 7:17-Matthew 7:18; in the moral or ethical sense, "evil," wicked; of persons, e.g., Matthew 7:11; Luke 6:45; Acts 17:5; 2 Thessalonians 3:2; 2 Timothy 3:13; of "evil" spirits, e.g., Matthew 12:45; Luke 7:21; Acts 19:12-Acts 19:13, Acts 19:15-Acts 19:16; of a generation, Matthew 12:39, Matthew 12:45; Matthew 16:4; Luke 11:29; of things, e.g., Matthew 5:11; Matthew 6:23; Matthew 20:15; Mark 7:22; Luke 11:34; John 3:19; John 7:7; Acts 18:14; Galatians 1:4; Colossians 1:21; 1 Timothy 6:4; 2 Timothy 4:18; Hebrews 3:12; Hebrews 10:22; James 2:4; James 4:16; 1 John 3:12; 2 John 1:11; 3 John 1:10;
(b) with the meaning toilsome, painful, Ephesians 5:16; Ephesians 6:13; Revelation 16:2. Cp. poneria, "iniquity, wickedness." For its use as a noun See B, No. 2.

[ A-3,Adjective,G5337, phaulos ]
primarily denotes "slight, trivial, blown about by every wind;" then, "mean, common, bad," in the sense of being worthless, paltry or contemptible, belonging to a low order of things; in John 5:29, those who have practiced "evil" things, RV, "ill" (phaula), are set in contrast to those who have done good things (agatha); the same contrast is presented in Romans 9:11; 2 Corinthians 5:10, in each of which the most authentic mss. have phaulos for kakos; he who practices "evil" things (RV, "ill") hates the light, John 3:20; jealousy and strife are accompanied by "every vile deed," James 3:16. It is used as a noun in Titus 2:8 (See B, No. 4). See BAD, ILL, VILE.

[ B-1,Noun,G2549, kakia ]
primarily, "badness" in quality (akin to A, No. 1), denotes
(a) "wickedness, depravity, malignity," e.g., Acts 8:22, "wickedness;" Romans 1:29, "maliciousness;" in James 1:21, AV, "naughtiness;"
(b) "the evil of trouble, affliction," Matthew 6:34, only, and here alone translated "evil." See MALICE, MALICIOUSNESS, NAUGHTINESS, WICKEDNESS.

[ B-2,Noun,G4190, poneros ]
the adjective (A, No. 2), is used as a noun,
(a) of Satan as the "evil" one, Matthew 5:37; Matthew 6:13; Matthew 13:19, Matthew 13:38; Luke 11:4 (in some texts); John 17:15; Ephesians 6:16; 2 Thessalonians 3:3; 1 John 2:13-14; 1 John 3:12; 1 John 5:18-19;
(b) of human beings, Matthew 5:45; (probably Matthew 5:39); Matthew 13:49; Matthew 22:10; Luke 6:35; 1 Corinthians 5:13;
(c) neuter, "evil (things)," Matthew 9:4; Matthew 12:35; Mark 7:23; Luke 3:19; "that which is evil," Luke 6:45; Romans 12:9; Acts 28:21, "harm."

[ B-3,Noun,G2556, kakon ]
the neuter of A, No. 1, is used with the article, as a noun, e.g., Acts 23:9; Romans 7:21; Hebrews 5:14; in the plural, "evil things," e.g., 1 Corinthians 10:6; 1 Timothy 6:10, "all kinds of evil," RV.

[ B-4,Noun,G5337, phaulon ]
the neuter of A, No. 3, is used as a noun in Titus 2:8.

[ B-5,Noun,G2555, kakopois ]
properly the masculine gender of the adjective, denotes an "evil-doer" (kakon, "evil," poieo, "to do"), 1 Peter 2:12, 1 Peter 2:14; 1 Peter 4:15; in some mss. in 1 Peter 3:16; John 18:30 (so the AV). For a synonymous word See Note
(1). Cp. the verb below. In the Sept., Proverbs 12:4; Proverbs 24:19. See MALEFACTOR.


(1) Kakourgos, "an evil-worker" (kakon, "evil," ergon, "a work"), is translated "evil-doer" in 2 Timothy 2:9, AV (RV, "malefactor"). Cp. Luke 23:32-Luke 23:33, Luke 23:39.

(2) Adikema, "an injustice" (a, negative, dikaios, "just"), is translated "evil-doing," in Acts 24:20, AV, RV, "wrong-doing." See INIQUITY, WRONG.

[ C-1,Verb,G2559, kakoo ]
"to ill-treat" (akin to A, No. 1), is rendered "to entreat evil" in Acts 7:6, Acts 7:19; "made (them) evil affected," Acts 14:2. See AFFECT, AFFLICT, HARM, HURT, VEX.

[ C-2,Verb,G2554, kakopoieo ]
signifies "to do evil" (cp. B, No. 5), Mark 3:4 (RV, "to do harm"); so, Luke 6:9; in 3 John 1:11, "doeth evil," in 1 Peter 3:17, "evil doing." See HARM.

Note: Cp. kakologeo, "to speak evil" (See CURSE, SPEAK); kakopatheo, "to endure evil" (See ENDURE, SUFFER); kakopatheia, "suffering affliction" (See SUFFER); kakoucheo, "to suffer adversity" (See SUFFER).

[ D-1,Adverb,G2560, kakos ]
"badly, evilly," akin to A, No. 1, is used in the physical sense, "to be sick," e.g., Matthew 4:24; Mark 1:32, Mark 1:34; Luke 5:31 (See DISEASE). In Matthew 21:41 this adverb is used with the adjective, "He will miserably destroy those miserable men," more lit., "He will evilly destroy those men (evil as they are)," with stress on the adjective;
(b) in the moral sense, "to speak evilly," John 18:23; Acts 23:5; "to ask evilly," James 4:3. See AMISS, GRIEVOUSLY, SICK, SORE.

Vine's Expository Dictionary of New Testament Words