7 THINGS THAT GOD HATES
“These six things doth the Lord hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto Him” (Proverbs 6:16)
WHILE Yahweh is pre-eminently a God of love, there are certain things that He hates, and it is well for us to know and understand both sides of His character. In some of our messages, we have emphasized His love as being boundless, and His mercy abundantly manifested, but, at this time, we turn to the 7 things that are an abomination unto Him, so that we may learn to look upon them in the same manner. They are:
- A proud look, or haughty eyes.
- A lying tongue.
- Hands that shed innocent blood.
- An heart that deviseth wicked imaginations.
- Feet that be swift in running to mischief.
- A false witness that speaketh lies.
- He that soweth discord among brethren. Prov. 6:17-19
“A PROUD look and haughty eyes” are easily observed in other people, because our eyes were made for the purpose of seeing and observing the things by which we are surrounded. The only way we can check up on ourselves with respect to this thing God hates, is self-examination by the Spirit-Word.
During this process, when we discover any of this evil characteristic, we may have difficulty in accepting the fact that we might have some pride in what we think we have accomplished. If we do, we should remember Paul’s words in 1 Cor. 4:7:
“For who maketh thee to differ from another? And what hast thou that thou didst not receive?
“Now if thou didst receive it, why dost thou glory, as if thou hadst not received it?”
“A LYING tongue” is detested by almost every person, but who can claim absolute truth of thought and word?
Most of us had business dealings where a lying tongue has deceived us, and we have suffered because of it. Much advertising is backed by lying tongues, and many business houses do not seem to give any thought to the various forms of deception resulting from the use of it.
It is the way of the world, thoughtlessly accepted as normal, against which the man of God must be ever on guard within himself.
Speech is a great responsibility; carelessness with it can destroy us before God. We must constantly pray that God set a guard upon our lips. Careless handling of facts can amount to lying. Voluminous and thoughtless chatter is bound to contain untruth:
“By thy words thou shalt be justified; and by thy words thou shalt be condemned.”
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THE third on our list is “Hands that shed innocent blood.” This is a great evil that comes to our attention almost daily. Certain factions get into arguments, tempers rise, mobs are formed, and soon violence breaks out, and perhaps without any previous intention, blood is shed as violence grows.
This has become characteristic in labour strife, when the potsherds of the earth—labour and business strive together.
And in recent years, this evil has raised its head in universities, colleges, and high schools. This has been foretold and must be increasingly manifest, as the Last Days draw to their terrible close and all the animal in man comes to the surface and fills the earth with violence.
The Scriptures teach us the deep and wonderful lesson that our responsibility for others extends to the fullest measure of our opportunity to do them good, and therefore any selfish failure on our part to “do good unto all men as we have opportunity” can amount in God’s sight to being involved in the shedding of innocent blood. We must exclaim with Paul in awe and wonder:
“Who is sufficient for these things? . . . But our sufficiency is of God.”
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“A HEART that deviseth wicked imaginations” is an evil that is closely related to a lying tongue, but considerably different in many ways. Wicked imaginations often do find an outlet by using a lying tongue, but there are many evils that do not, such as anger, pride, and much bitterness.
We must be extremely careful in attempting to judge the motives of others for, at the same time, we may be building up erroneous thoughts that could find expression in letters that some day would bring shame and rebuke before others, and rejection at the Judgment Seat.
We must always remember that God’s way of doing things is not patterned after our methods. This was strongly emphasized by Him in His words to Samuel in 1 Sam. 16:7:
“For the Lord seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the Lord looketh on the heart.”
Who among us has not been humiliated and ashamed by the later discovery that our self-righteous judgment of others has turned out to be “wicked imaginations”? If we have not experienced this, then in all probability we have been remiss in self-examination, for:
“The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?” (Jer. 17:9).
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“FEET that be swift in running to mischief” is a thought that is strengthened when we note the word is elsewhere translated “evil” and “wickedness.” All mischief IS wickedness.
It is possible for this to develop in an ecclesia when some dispute arises, and is not dealt with in harmony with the written Word. One could try to bring peace by overlooking the error that caused the dispute, and seek peace just for the sake of peace.
Evil tolerated for the love of peace is a wrong policy, for error covered up is like a seed planted in the ground; in due time it will continue to germinate and come up stronger than ever.
We must truly exercise great love and patience and forbearance with weakness, but we have no right or authority to ever set aside apostolic commands with respect to fellowship, and replace them with our own mistaken ideas of what is right or wrong.
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ITEM 6 on the hateful list is “a false witness that speaketh lies.” This can be either in the world, or in the ecclesia.
In the world, a witness in the courts is carefully warned that he must speak the truth and nothing but the truth. If he fails, and becomes a false witness, he can be charged with perjury for which the penalty is sternly severe.
In the ecclesia, we must also speak the Truth, and nothing but the Truth, for (1 Cor. 4:2)—
“It is required in stewards, that a man be found faithful”
—and we are stewards of the world’s greatest treasure—the Word of Life.
If we profess to be brethren of Christ, a sacred responsibility rests upon us, so that we dare not teach anything in the form of error, or even anything that is of a doubtful nature. But our obligation does not stop there, for we must not befriend those who teach error. If we do, we become, as John said, “partakers of their evil deeds.”
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THE seventh thing that God hates is he that soweth discord among brethren. One translation of v. 16 reads, “There are six things which the Lord hates; yea, the seventh is an abomination to Him.”
But no matter which way we look at it, it is still an abomination. There are many forms that this can take, and one of them is the development of crotchets. A brother may select some commandment, or he may decide upon some form of procedure, and keep agitating the subject until he finally elevates it above a first principle of Truth.
Even though he may realize that his action has brought discord, or strife, among his brethren, he will continue his agitation under the pretext of “righteous zeal.”
It is not surprising to find “sowing discord” in organizations pertaining to worldly affairs, but we are not a group of that type, we are the Ecclesia of the Living God. Christ is the Head, and every part of the Body must do its part so that we will operate as a unit.
If any part of the Body gets out of joint, the only weapon we are permitted to use is the Word of God, which is the sword of the Spirit, and we must learn how to use it in harmony with the Truth. The divine standard by which we must operate, is provided for us in Mic. 6:8—
“He hath showed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the Lord require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God.”
Humility is one of the foundation stones of the Household of God, and Jesus gave us a notable example when he washed the feet of his disciples.
If we would enter the Kingdom of God, it will only be through “much tribulation,” and tribulation should draw us closer to one another. Nothing must come between us, for what we do for or against our brethren and sisters we do for or against God. This is a thought that should be in our minds at all times, for Jesus made it plain in Matt. 25:40:
“Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.”
It is possible for us to be sowing discord among brethren without being conscious of it. We may be overcome with misplaced zeal in our endeavour to put into effect what we believe to be a wise policy that will benefit the members of the ecclesia. It is a good thing to be zealous; but if we are, let us be certain that our zeal is founded upon love for the Truth and the Brotherhood, and is tempered with care for harmony, unity, & peace in the ecclesia:
“Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory: but in lowliness of mind LET EACH ESTEEM OTHER BETTER THAN THEMSELVES.”
Where are such to be found? Truly their price is above rubies!