Study 4 SEVEN THINGS THAT GOD HATES
TEN STUDIES IN PROVERBS
by Francis Dixon
(Key-verses: Proverbs 6:16-19)
When reading God’s Word our tendency is to turn first to the passages which bring comfort and encouragement. Sometimes, however, it is necessary to turn to those verses “useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training…” - look up 2 Timothy 3:16-17. These verses bring before us the kind of teaching we are always needing, so before examining the seven things which God hates, let’s make three observations about this portion of scripture.
- 1. These verses clearly emphasise the moral hideousness of the human heart and of the world in which we live. The seven evils mentioned are all around us. These verses, therefore, declare the depravity of man. This is not a popular subject and in many quarters is no longer believed; but whether men believe that the human race is depraved or not, it does not alter the fact. It is all too apparent as we watch trends in literature, programmes on television, and the kinds of pictures and plays which are advertised. Wherever we look we see the great sinfulness of sin (Isaiah 1:5-6; Jeremiah 17:9). How great is the moral hideousness of the human heart!
- 2. These verses remind us of the holiness and purity of God and of His hatred of sin. These are the seven sins which are called “detestable”. How much does God hate sin? In a former dispensation God hated sin so much that He destroyed most of the human race which He had created (Genesis 6:5-7). But to find out how much God hates sin we must look at Calvary to remind ourselves that so great was the divine hatred against sin that God actually surrendered His own Son to the fearful suffering and anguish of a Roman gibbet, so that sin might once and for all be dealt with - look up Philippians 2:8. How holy God is, and how much He hates sin!
- 3. These verses remind us that the true ambition and desire of God’s people is, or should be, to live without these offensive sins which God hates. Thank God, it is possible to live a life that is pleasing to Him! He has provided victory over all the things that grieve Him. We are to be different people, and we may be (Romans 8:37; Ephesians 4:30).
What, then, are the seven things that God hates?
1. A Proud Look - “haughty eyes”
Pride is the primary sin (James 4:6). It was through pride that the Devil fell. What an insidious thing pride is! That is why the Apostle Peter speaks about the virtue of humility (1 Peter 3:4; 5:5). What did Jesus say in Matthew 11:29-30?
2. A Lying Tongue
But surely Christians do not lie? Unfortunately they do sometimes. But surely it’s alright to tell ‘white’ lies? Is it? God hates ”a lying tongue”. But surely it’s impossible to get on in business these days without telling the occasional lie? God hates “a lying tongue”; see what Paul wrote in Ephesians 4:25. We need to pray David’s prayer in Psalm 120:2.
3. Heartless Cruelty - “hands that shed innocent blood”
We quite naturally think of Cain and Abel (Genesis 4:1-15). In the New Testament we read about Cain, who shed innocent blood when he killed Abel (1 John 3:11-12,15). Do you hate anyone? Then in God’s sight you are a murderer, and God hates murderers.
4. Vicious Scheming - “a heart that devises wicked schemes”
We are reminded here of the source of evil which begins inside. See what Jesus said (Matthew 15:18-19). How different was Dorcas in Acts 9:36; and Barnabas (Acts 11:24).
5. Mischievous Eagerness - “feet that are quick to rush into evil”
Here are feet that run to do mischief! This is the Devil’s work because he “prowls around like a roaring lion” (1 Peter 5:8). God hates this mischief. What are your feet doing? Are they the beautiful feet of Romans 10:15?
6. Social Slander - “a false witness who pours out lies”
An old writer has said, “This is an accursed thing! It works oftentimes by other means than words: by a look or a shrug of the shoulders it levels its poisoned arrows; it has broken many a virtuous heart and stained many a virtuous reputation. It has nodded away many a good name, and winked into existence a host of suspicions, that have gathered round and crushed the most chaste and virtuous of our kind. It often works in the dark, and generally under the mask of truthfulness and love.” God hates slander - see what He says about it in Ephesians 4:29 and 32.
7. Divisive Strife – “a man who stirs up dissension among brothers”
This perhaps is the worst of the seven sins. Another old writer refers to the man who by “tale bearing, untrue stories, half-truths, subtle insinuations, produces the disruption of friendships and the break-up of fellowship…” God hates this!
This is a dreadful subject but perhaps it is needed, and we must ask the question, How can we be released from these things which God hates and filled with those things which He loves?
- 1. We must be honest with ourselves and with God; let the searchlight of His Word and of the Holy Spirit come into our hearts and reveal the things which displease Him. Then we must admit our wrong, confess our sin and forsake that which grieves the Lord (2 Corinthians 7:1).
- 2. We must seek and receive the cleansing of Christ’s precious blood. Thank God, this is available for the saint and for the sinner! (1 John 1:7).
- 3. We must rely upon the Holy Spirit for victory (2 Corinthians 3:17).