The basic purpose of every Christian is to become like the Lord, and to do the works that He did. We do this by loving Him and our neighbors. Everything that we are called to do will fit in one of those categories: loving God or people. We may distinguish the path God has called us to walk by determining the path that compels us to walk in love.
If we truly love the Lord we will love what He loves and hate what He hates. Proverbs 6:16-19 declares:
“There are six things which the LORD hates, yes, seven which are an abomination to Him: Haughty eyes, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood, A heart that devises wicked plans, feet that run rapidly to evil, A false witness who utters lies, and one who spreads strife among brothers.”
Because these are the things that the Lord hates, we can immediately know that anything that falls into any of these categories will be evil, and if we love the Lord we will not do them.
The first thing that He hates is “haughty eyes.” This is pride that is manifested by the way that we look at others or ourselves. If we begin to look down on other churches or ministries because we think that ours is superior, are we not guilty of this? If we have been positioned a little higher than others for a time, it is for the purpose of service, not exaltation. We should therefore consider those who may not be as “exalted” as we are as the ones we are called to serve.
The next thing that the Lord hates is “a lying tongue.” He is the Truth and those who love Him will love truth. The devil is the “father of lies” (see John 8:44), and we must consider all lies as the devil’s work.
The next thing that the Lord hates is the shedding of “innocent blood.” This is closely linked to lying in John 8:44, which we also need to consider was spoken by the Lord to the most religious people of His day:
“You are of your father the devil, and you want to do the desires of your father. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. Whenever he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own nature; for he is a liar, and the father of lies.”
We see here that the devil murdered when he did not stand in the truth. Did he not use lies to deceive in the Garden, and through those lies release all of the death that the world has known? Lies lead to death. Lies can be more deadly than bullets or bombs.
The next thing that the Lord hates is “a heart that devises wicked plans.” Remember that one of the first things said about the serpent in the Garden, which was a personification of the devil, was that he was “crafty” (see Genesis 3:1). This implies devising plans to bend or break the rules and get away with it. This is a basic manifestation of the lawlessness that is the basic nature of the “man of sin,” or “Antichrist.” We must learn to recognize the crafty for what they are, and repent of craftiness when it arises in our own hearts.
The next thing that the Lord hates is “feet that run rapidly to evil.” Is there something in us that is drawn to evil? Is there something that derives a satisfaction, even an excitement, when we hear about acts of evil or violence? This is a manifestation of the base, fallen nature that has led to much of the suffering that mankind has endured. The Lord hates it and so should we.
It is also interesting here that the Lord hates feet that run “rapidly” to evil. I have learned that whenever I was pressured into doing something fast, it turns out to be a mistake. The faster I was pressured into going, the worse mistake it was. Carl Jung once said, “Hurry is not of the devil, it is the devil.”
The next thing that the Lord hates is “a false witness who utters lies.” This is the root of slander, gossip, and backbiting that divides the church the Lord died to save and unify. This can lead to becoming a stumbling block, the very last thing that the Lord said we should ever want to be. If we just pass on slander and gossip, we are just as guilty as the one who originated it. We should therefore be quick to recognize it and refuse to participate in it, knowing that it is something that the Lord hates.
The last thing that is listed as something that the Lord hates is “one who spreads strife among brothers.” This is to be distinguished from those who slander and gossip because they can use truth to spread strife and division. This is how the devil, who is called “the accuser of the brethren” (see Revelation 12:10), comes as an “angel of light” (see 2 Corinthians 11:14), or “messenger of truth.” We can share absolute truth, but share it incompletely, or even in a tone that brings division and strife. We must always remember that the Lord has given us a “ministry of reconciliation” (see 2 Corinthians 5:8), and he hates the things that we do that cause division.
Remember our basic calling is to love the Lord and to love our neighbors. Let us judge everything that we do by the love standard. Are we doing it out of love for the Lord and His people? If we love the Lord we will also love the truth, because He is Truth. If we are abiding in Him, we will always use truth in love.
~ Pastor Rick Joyner
|Pastor Rick Joyner is the founder and executive director of MorningStar Ministries and Heritage International Ministries and is the Senior Pastor of MorningStar Fellowship Church.|