Our nation and world are in turmoil. We shouldn’t be so quick to step up with our two cents in an opinion contest. Opinions really don’t matter. Even an impassioned discourse on why we back an opinion won’t sway people. Keep in mind that everyone else is just like we are: while you are talking they are drafting their own response in their head and aren’t even listening to you except to have feelings hurt. I’m going to quote my dear friend Shar, who is now home with Jesus: “It’s either the truth of God or the lies of the devil. There’s no middle ground.” With that, Let’s look at God’s Word on the subject so that we can put aside our own sin (yes, we all are all sinners who fall short of the glory of God).
God is a tender, compassionate God who is rich in mercy and grace, but He is also a God of justice—One who hates and abhors sin in every form. Preachers often seem to fail in reminding people that while our God is essentially a God of love, He also has the capacity to hate.
John the Baptist’s preaching (in contrast to much of the preaching one hears today), was down-to-earth and right to the point. He cut no corners. He played no favorites. He had no reputation to defend. His delivery may not have been in line with good homiletics, but he spoke clearly and let the chips fall where they may. We will need to take the same approach as we examine the seven things that God hates, as outlined in Proverbs 6:16-19.
The passage clearly declares that God hates haughty eyes (a proud look), a lying tongue, hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked plans, feet that are swift in running to evil, a false witness who speaks lies, and one who sows discord among brethren. This is not a complete list of things that are an abomination to God. The word “abomination” appears 174 times in the Bible. In this passage we are given a list of seven “specials”—seven things that are extremely disgusting in the eyes of God. It is important for every Christian to take a serious look at those things which are disgusting to God and ask the Holy Spirit to show us any stronghold we need to ask the Lord to remove. Today, we’ll look at the first thing written here that is an abomination to our Lord.
1. God Hates a Proud Look
Pride is basically an exaggerated sense of self-esteem. Pride is putting ourselves on a pedestal above others. Pride is an arrogant, almost boastful, inflated opinion of one’s own worth and ability. Pride takes many different forms:
There is a pride of intellect—an arrogance that assumes one knows more than others. We might excel in one area, but all of us are just plain stupid in other areas of knowledge.
There is a pride of power—the passion to achieve, to dominate, and to give orders.
There is a pride of nation—the deification of one’s national homeland, a false pride that results in racism and bigotry toward others (Nazi Germany is a prime example).
There is a spiritual pride—the pride of those who glory in their own spiritual attainments. (If only everyone else in the church would be like we are—or think like we do!)
There is a pride of face—an unreasonable self-esteem connected with the way one appears on the outside.
Some say that it doesn’t matter how one grooms the body. They declare that pride is all in the heart. But Proverbs 6 says that God hates “a proud look”—and that’s on the outside! Surely the angels of God would shrink away from some of the fancy, fashionable, decorated church members of our day. In Heaven, such persons would not be satisfied at all. The simple white robes which the saints of God will wear in the eternal world would not suit their tastes! One of the things which God despises is “a proud look.” God’s people will focus on appearing with simplicity and modesty, and without any indication of vanity and haughtiness.
Over and over again, we are told in the Scriptures that God resists the proud. Over and over again, all of us should fall on our knees and ask God to deliver us from every trace of conceit and undue self-esteem. “But He gives a greater grace. Therefore it says, ‘God is opposed to the proud, but gives grace to the humble.’ Submit therefore to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded. Be miserable and mourn and weep; let your laughter be turned into mourning and your joy to gloom. Humble yourselves in the presence of the Lord, and He will exalt you.” (James 4:6-10)