By Daniel James
Every good book has a good plot. Every good plot has one significant
thing that makes it interesting. Because most books have a ï¿½good
versus evilï¿½ theme, letï¿½s take a look at what makes them so interesting.
The good-guy bad-guy story is as old as Adam. Iï¿½ve seen this
theme repeated thousands of times in stories, movies and plays.
But most of them receive low ratings. Only a few stand out above
the rest. What is it in these few that the others are lacking? Drive.
Drive is a compelling force, push or motivation behind oneï¿½s
actions, which usually pushes a person onward toward a particular
goal or achievement. Basically, drive should have a purpose. How
boring it would be if a person had no drive, no purpose, and no
motivation behind his or her actions. So in every ï¿½good versus evilï¿½
theme, the drive behind the good and evil must be revealed and exploited
in order to keep the story from becoming another mundane copycat
waste of time, ink, paper & film.
Letï¿½s take, for example, the number one best-selling book of
all time-the Bible. There is most definitely a ï¿½good versus evilï¿½
theme in this book; but what makes it so interesting is the drive
behind the ï¿½goodï¿½ and the drive behind the ï¿½evil.ï¿½
Letï¿½s start with a look at the drive behind the evil. The origin
of evil has its roots in none other than Satan himself.
The Bible explains Satanï¿½s drive in many places, but letï¿½s take
a look at the earliest time period mentioned--when Satan was cast
out of Heaven by God.
Isaiah 14:13 You said in your heart, "I will ascend to heaven;
I will raise my throne above the stars of God; I will sit enthroned
on the mount of assembly, on the utmost heights of the sacred mountain.ï¿½
Clearly Satanï¿½s purpose behind his evil actions was self-glory.
He wanted to rule Heaven and earth. That sounds quite reminiscent
of many Hollywood themes we see today. How many thousands of books &
movies have their ï¿½bad guysï¿½ driven by lust for power and fame?
Many of their villains can be heard saying something like ï¿½ï¿½.and
Iï¿½ll rule the world, ah-ha-ha-ha!ï¿½ Isnï¿½t that what drives most evil
in the real world? Lust for power & position? And to go a step
further, it is evident throughout the Bible that Satan is driven
by ï¿½hate.ï¿½ He hates both God and man.
1st Peter 5:8 says ï¿½Your enemy the devil prowls around like a
roaring lion looking for someone to devour.ï¿½
And back to Isaiah 14:12 ï¿½How you have fallen from heaven, O
morning star (Satan), son of the dawn! You have been cast down to
the earth, you who once laid low the nations!ï¿½
Satan tries to make himself higher by making others lower. He
believes if he blows out your candle, it will make his brighter.
How often do we see this in the real world, with jealousy &
envy in politics, marriages, sibling rivalry and even cutting remarks
from peers in school, all of whom are putting others down to try
and lift themselves up--all of them driven by hate just like Satan.
Now letï¿½s take a look at the other half of the Bibleï¿½s theme--good.
Genesis 1:31 says ï¿½God saw all that He had made, and it was very
Good is defined as being desirable in nature, of high quality,
being kind, being loyal, being moral and being positive.
Good stands alone and shines without any help; yet what makes
it so interesting in the Bible is how it contrasts with evil. It
appears even brighter when compared to evil. What is even more interesting
is the manner in which good conquers evil in the Bible. This is
also reminiscent of many other successful book and movie themes
throughout the world today.
From cover to cover in the Bible we see examples of good versus
evil, but its entire theme can be summed up in one simple verse--Jonn
ï¿½For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son,
that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.ï¿½
This verse shows that the drive behind the good act that Jesus
did to save the world is love. When Jesus died upon a cross, He
did it because He loves us and He did not want us to perish, as
was our prior fate, due to the fact that sin had entered the world
through Adamï¿½s disobedience. The next verse goes on to say in John
ï¿½For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world,
but to save the world through Him.ï¿½
Jesus became the new ï¿½Adamï¿½ to represent all mankind and He paid
for our sins by being obedient to God the Father and laying down
his life upon a cross in order to save us from death.
So there you have it--both drive and purpose. Jesus was driven
by love with a purpose to save us and share His glory with us. This
is opposite of Satanï¿½s drive and purposeï¿½Satan is driven by hate
with a purpose to destroy us and glorify only himself.
Now finally the climax of this story-- 1st Corinthians 15:54
ï¿½When the perishable has been clothed with the imperishable,
and the mortal with immortality, then the saying that is written
will come true:
ï¿½Where O death is your victory? Where, O death is your sting?ï¿½
The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. But
thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus
According to the Bible, good has conquered evil with a good act
driven by love with a purpose to save the world.
Itï¿½s no wonder this all-time best seller has the key ingredients
for a storyï¿½s success. Drive and purpose. Evil driven by hate with
a purpose to destroy the world and glorify self-- and good driven
by love with a purpose to save the world and share the glory.
Leave either drive or purpose out of a story and you join the
ranks of the could-have-beens.