Proverbs 24:8 Dissected & Defined
He that deviseth (schemes) to do evil (defined below) shall be called a mischievous person (inclined to do harm).
A person may use different methods when defining Bible words. I like to use an older dictionary of the English language. I use an 1828 Noah Webster’s Dictionary. However, whenever possible, I allow Scripture to define itself.
Certain writers of the Word, under God’s influence, will self-define their words. Solomon defined the word “evil” in Proverbs 8:13 “The fear of the LORD is to hate evil:” (he defines evil after the colon) “pride, and arrogancy, and the evil way, and the froward mouth, do I hate.”
How to Define Evil
Solomon thus defines the borders that define evil. Pride is an undue esteem of self. Arrogance is an undue disregard for others. The evil way is the lifestyle of evil people. A froward mouth is a perverse talker. That is to say, someone who is less than honest or deceitful in the presentation of facts.
Solomon’s definition of evil is quite different than my assumption of what constitutes an evil person. Notice that each of these character traits are issues of the heart. Before you do these things, you think them. They are premeditated. They are mischievous.
Evil Thinking of Schemers
This type of evil thinking belongs to schemers. So these are people who devise evil exercise. These people dwell on self. Also, they dwell on their disdain for others. And they dwell on the enjoyment from wrong lifestyle choices. Schemers dwell on dishonest replies to those to whom they are accountable.
This person is evil, not because of how they act, but because of how they think. They think evil and will eventually perform that which is evil. They devise it, they dwell on it, and they will soon do it! “As he thinketh in his heart so is he” (Proverbs 23:7).
Solomon says this dweller is inclined to do harm. But before he ever harms another, he will first harm himself. He will do this from the inside, out!