The other day I was reading Proverbs 6:16-19. "There are six things the LORD HATES, seven that are DETESTABLE to Him: haughty eyes, a lying tongue, hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked schemes, feet that are quick to rush into evil, a false witness who pours out lies and a man who stirs up dissension among brothers."
God's nature so reflects love that the Bible says, "God is love." (1 Jn. 4:16) If God is the embodiment of love, how can He hate? This was the question that haunted my mind. We usually use the word ‘hate’ in a sentence like this one, “I hate carrots”, to mean “I prefer something else” or “I would rather not eat carrots”. But the word ‘Hate’ has got a positive, Godly meaning and a darker, more sinister meaning. Godly hate contrasts with human hatred because hate coming from fleshly desire is not the result of standing for right in love. Godly hate is commanded by God and directed at sin. Human hatred has nothing to do with God; its purpose is only to satisfy the lust of the one hating. We have been taught that there is no hate in God and that all hate is bad and of the devil. But remember, “God so LOVED the world, (or God so HATED the sin of the world,) that He gave His only-begotten Son that whosoever believeth in Him might not perish, but have everlasting life. Standing against what is evil (hating it) does not cancel out God's love, it demonstrates it!
Prov. 6:16-19 expose some sinful actions and attitudes that God hates. What God hates should never be found in our lives.
The FIRST action/attitude that God hates is HAUGHTY EYES or A PROUD LOOK. It is the tendency to overvalue oneself and undervalue others. It is the look of the eye that says I am better than someone else. The first sin recorded in Scripture is Satan’s sin, which was PRIDE. Pride was the reason for his fall. "Pride is dust deifying (glorifying) itself." Pride manifests itself in numerous ways like rolling the eyes in response to something said, looking down on someone who is different from me, setting myself up as the judge of others, thinking that I am wiser, criticizing, arguing, disobeying, rebelling, showing ingratitude, boasting about my accomplishments, status or knowledge, showing disrespect, wanting to be the centre of attraction, and so on.
"All of you, clothe yourselves with humility toward one another,.....God opposes the proud but shows favor to the humble...Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand..." 1Peter 5:5-6
" Humility is not thinking less of yourself, but thinking of yourself less," C.S Lewis.
"If you are humble, nothing will touch you, neither praise nor disgrace, because you know what you are."- Mother Teresa
The SECOND thing that the Lord hates is A LYING TONGUE – God hates lying! The Bible says that God is truth and a lie is the opposite of God’s very nature. A lie is an attack on His Person. He will ultimately judge all those who use their tongues to tell lies. The tongue was created so that we could use it to give glory to God. Bible devotes more scriptures to the use of the tongue than it does to the use of alcohol! Some people would never drink a beer or even eat in a restaurant that served it, but those same people think nothing of using their tongues to slander others and spread lies. (I am not in any way condoning alcoholism) God hates the abuse of the tongue and He will judge it. Lying takes on many forms like not telling the truth about a wrongdoing, withholding information that others need to have, using hypocritical words, using flattery to gain something from someone, exaggerating the facts, implying that something is true, or purposely leading someone to an incorrect assumption, telling partial truths, committing to doing something with no real intention of following through, making excuses, blaming others for own sinful actions, etc.
Proverbs 12:22 says, “Lying lips are an abomination to the Lord, but those who act faithfully are his delight.”
‘The truth may hurt for a little while, but a lie hurts forever. ‘The naked truth is always better than the best-dressed lie.’- Ann Landers
The THIRD thing that the Lord hates is HANDS THAT SHED INNOCENT BLOOD – This refers to murder or taking away the life of another human being. We can confess that we are not guilty of killing a person physically. However, we can kill our fellow beings in other ways- spiritually, psychologically, and mentally. We can hate a person so much that we look for ways to attack and destroy him or her. 'You shall not murder, and whoever murders will be in danger of the judgment.' But I say to you that whoever is angry with his brother without a cause shall be in danger of judgment" (Matthew 5: 21-22). Jesus did not limit the observance of this commandment to its literal fulfillment, but also took into account the individual's inner attitude. Accordingly we read as follows in 1 John 3: 15: “Everyone who hates his brother is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life abiding in him.” Murder shows its dirty fangs in us when we burst out in anger, assault physically, show indifference, shout, threaten, use abusive language, bombard someone with hostile questions, damage property, engage in road rage, and so on. We may not admit it but honestly speaking we all show hatred toward each other and toward others. But John tells us, “You know that no murderer has eternal life in him, meaning that the eternal life that Christ has given is no longer in control of that individual; it is no longer abiding in him.” If we hate someone, that’s tantamount to murder, and we have become the temporary slaves of Satan. We are God's children doing the devil's work, and we need to face it on that level. It takes the power of God to break the power of hate.
“An eye for an eye leaves the whole world blind”- Mahatma Gandhi
The FOURTH thing that the Lord hates is A HEART THAT DEVISES WICKED PLANS. This refers to a person who purposely plans to do evil. It is a person who consciously considers how to do that which is hurtful to others. It is malicious, vicious, vindictive scheming. God hates such people. You and I may not have committed any premeditated acts of evil such as murder, robbery, rape, sabotage, arson, etc. However, we can easily fall into the trap of scheming to sin as well. Attacking and insulting others, showing disrespect toward God and His character, misusing or misappropriating God's name and authority for any purpose, such as invoking the name of God, enticing others to practice what is wrong, dealing dishonestly with others, misleading, manipulating, and coercing people, plotting revenge, snubbing someone, conspiring to deceive or hurt someone, lying about a long series of actions in order to cover sin are some of them. There are evil thoughts in all men's hearts; but the devising and fabricating of them, and thus making the heart into a devil's workshop, is the mark of utter depravity and wickedness, and is abhorrent to God. “For from the heart come evil thoughts, murder, adultery, all sexual immorality, theft, lying, and slander. These are what defile you. (Matt. 15:19-20 NLT)
"If you would live long, live well, for folly and wickedness shorten life." Benjamin Franklin.
The FIFTH item on God’s most-hated list is FEET THAT MAKE HASTE TO RUN TO EVIL. It refers to "impulsiveness that causes haste in pursuing ungodly things." It is “the enthusiastic and complete involvement in activities that bring pain to others” or “an eagerness to seize the opportunity to hurt someone.” Such people can't wait to get involved in activities that harm others. They are “couriers of ill news, eager retailers of slander.” They are the ones who would have gladly thrown ‘the first stone’ in John 8, and the ones who furiously rushed to do so in Acts 7. They take a savage delight in being the instruments of hurt. ‘Feet’ throughout the Bible are a metaphor for the direction in life we choose. When “wicked imaginations” are formed in the heart, the feet will be quick to carry them out. Do we have feet that carry us around spreading lies, rumors and gossip? Our feet reveal the condition of our heart. What we do is what we are!
“When our actions are based on good intentions our soul has no regrets.”-Anthony Douglas Williams
The first five things that God hates speak of various parts of the body (eyes, tongue, hands, heart, feet). Now the author of Proverbs moves to the person himself.
The SIXTH one on the most hated list is A FALSE WITNESS WHO BREATHES OUT LIES or a person who deliberately engages in social slander. The idea of "breathing out" conveys that it comes from within; it is their nature. They are quick to lie about others in order to make themselves look better. When things go wrong, they are always quick to point the finger. They fail to shoulder the blame for something that they should have done. This type of behavior is extremely harmful and lowers the dignity of fellow human beings. Those who “pour out lies” lose all credibility in time and eventually, people will tend to not believe anything they say.
Do we falsely accuse someone of misbehavior and sin? Do we misrepresent a disagreement between people? Do we falsely describe the actions of another person in a way that implies his guilt? Do we deliberately engage in social slander?
“Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear.” Ephesians 4:29
“Don’t let your ears witness, what your eyes didn’t see; don’t let your mouth speak, what your heart doesn’t feel.”
The SEVENTH and last item on the list is “ONE WHO SOWS DISCORD AMONG BROTHERS” or A MAN WHO STIRS UP DISSENSION AMONG BROTHERS." The sowing of discord amongst fellow Christians is one of the most poisonous activities that eats at the life of the church. It is what gangrene does to flesh. DISCORD SOWERS throw seeds of doubt, rumor, gossip, complaint, and criticism wherever they go. They engage in Satan’s work and they will drag you down with them. People who gossip don’t care about what is in the best interest of the church, the family or the community. Their aim is to destroy someone, and they want you to help them. The best thing you can do is to tell them you don’t want to hear it! Listening to gossip and repeating gossip, slandering, repeating truths that will harm another person’s reputation, leading others to imagine the worst about someone, stirring up disagreements and jealousies, arousing suspicions against someone, meddling in the disagreements of others, taking sides in disagreements, and envying the success and blessing of others are some of the things that most of us engage in. Nowadays we also use the phone and social media as an instrument of destroying lives. “God, who gets invited to dinner at your place? How do we get on your guest list? ‘Walk straight, act right, tell the truth. Don’t hurt your friend, don’t blame your neighbor; despise the despicable.’ (Psalm 15:1-3 MSG).
“The Master’s tools will never dismantle the Master’s house.”- Audre Lorde
We have looked at the seven things God hates. We are all guilty in many of these areas. If God hates them, we should hate them also. Not a single one of these things should ever be true of any child of God. If we allow these things to be a part of our lives, we will be answerable to Him. It is the time to repent. Jesus Christ shed his blood and died on the Cross to redeem us from the influence of these things. Why would any saved person who understands the price Jesus Christ paid on the cross allow these sins in his or her life? If we can do these things with no remorse or sense of a need for repentance, I would say that we are not saved. Why? When we do these things, we are manifesting the works of the flesh and not the fruit of the Spirit; very simply, we are living contrary to what we profess!
Lord, help us to live the kind of lives that prove we belong to YOU. Then we will want to please YOU in every way as we grow in bearing fruit in every kind of good work and increasing in the knowledge of God.