When thinking of more modern evil men, often the name Adolph Hitler, or Joseph Stalin comes to mind. Or possibly Sadam Hussein, Osama Bin Laden or Pol Pot. These are all evil men. Did you know that there are many evil men in the Bible? Also, quite a few evil women. All of us are born in sin. We all have the nature of Adam. Unless God intervenes by His sovereign power, we stay sinful, and lost. All men are sinners, but all are not necessarily as wicked as they could be. Some are more horribly wicked than others. I want to examine briefly those men and women who are the Bible’s five most wicked sinners. Perhaps another time will look at the Bible’s most godly characters. It is my list, and you may have a different one. I am not trying to be exhaustive in the manner of Dr. Herbert Lockyer in his excellent series of books such as All the Women of the Bible, etc… Let me know your vote on “five most evil”. I’d like to know your choices. Also, what is your choice for most righteous, other than Jesus Christ?
1) Judas Iscariot. He has to be at the top of my list. His betrayal of the Lord Jesus Christ earned him that position, in my opinion. He was a conniving man, and a thief. He did not fool Jesus who gave His prophecy straight on who it was that would betray Him.(see Matthew 26:21). I know he was ordained, or chosen to this condemnation (Matthew 26:24; John 6:70; Jude 4). It was his destiny, yet he was guilty, and he was evil.
2) Pontius Pilate. He was an evil man for many reasons. Jesus told him who He was, and yet he refused to believe it, even though he said “I find no fault in this man (Luke 23:4; John 19:4,6). He washed his hands. He will try to wash them for eternity, but he cannot remove the stain of sin. Nothing can, but the blood of the very Man he had crucified. As the creed says, Jesus suffered under Pontius Pilate, the only human authority who could have released Him; he wanted to do so, but he was a coward.
3) Jezebel. The first woman on our list. She was an evil woman. She was a follower of false gods. She was a witch (2 Kings 9:22). Her reputation was so scary that Elijah trembled at her promise to kill him (1 Kings 19:2), the very prophet who had stood against the prophets of Baal, and not only had victory at Mount Carmel, but brought rain to parched Israel (1 Kings 18:38, 41).
4) Pharaoh. This particular Pharaoh was ruthless and a very proud man. He refused to let Israel go, in spite of the confrontations with the servants of Jehovah; Moses and Aaron (Exodus 5:1; Exodus 8:8). He would be defeated and rise back up to obstinately oppose Jehovah’s stated purpose again. Finally he lost everything, including his first born child (Exodus 11:5-7), and eventually even his own life (Exodus 14:28; 15:19).
5) Herod. This was Herod the Great, son of Antipater, an Idumean. He was a vicious, selfish ruler who feared giving up his power to the predicted King of Israel. He had all the male children under two years old killed. He was determined to kill Christ, but God’s purpose must be fulfilled. Until then no one could kill Jesus. All the Herod family was wicked, but this one was the worst. He had several of his ten wives killed. He wanted so badly to destroy Christ, yet it is recorded that this Herod died when Jesus was very young (Matthew 2:14-18).