Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!
The Hoffman Christian Standard Bible says it like this, “Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who substitute darkness for light and light for darkness, who substitute bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter,” and Young’s Literal Translation puts it like this, “Wo to those saying to evil ‘good,’ And to good ‘evil,’ Putting darkness for light, and light for darkness, Putting bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter.”
So the bottom line of the instruction here is, what we say with our mouth about good and evil. When we call good evil we are putting darkness for light and we are putting sweet for bitter.
Good and evil is always present in this creation and in our lives because our great-grandparents, namely Adam and his wife, ate of the Tree of Knowledge of good and evil. It wasn’t the tree of good and evil but rather merely the knowledge of good and evil. Therefore we are always aware of the presence of good and evil in every situation. The test is in us calling evil what it is and in calling good what it is. We can only do that correctly when we return to the foot of Jesus’ cross, by faith, on a daily basis, for fresh forgiveness and life from His sacrificial death. When I have a living experience with the Christ of Calvary I am able to rightly divide and call evil what it is and call good what it is.
When I’m not living with a personal experience of the love of God, as it was displayed at Calvary, I will soon become confused and start calling the light in my life darkness and calling the sweet a bitter thing. We can avoid much confusion and woe in life if we learn to return to our knees at the foot of Calvary’s cross and wait on the Lord to show us what is good and what is evil.