Seven Things

Proverb 6: 16 – 19

There are six things that the Lord hates, seven that 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 declares lies, and one who spreads strife among brothers.

Did you know that our Lord hates some things? We know Him to be love and preach Him that way, but there are things which he detests.

Our God is very passionate. I think we often paint Him as somber and stoic, but I do not believe that is an accurate representation. He loves and He hates, just as we do. The difference, though, is that He does not hate people. He hates behaviors. He can love the person whose “feet run rapidly to evil” even while He despises their actions. That is an interesting phenomenon, one that might give us comfort even as it challenges us to love as He does.

Take a look again at the things which move God to hate and perhaps put some other words in place. For haughty eyes you might think arrogance or self-importance; a lying tongue, well that one is simple. He hates lying in all its forms and doesn’t seem to see different colors or sizes of lies; not even little or white. For hands that shed innocent blood is it a reference to murder or might it extend to manslaughter?

I will let you do the rest for yourself but take note of two things. First, lying is in this list twice. That is quite a statement. Second, have a look at the strife issue. Apparently, God hates when people stir up strife.

I find this pretty eye opening but again, I hope you will read the entire proverb. There is much more in this proverb as with them all. Maybe look at Proverb 6 in its entirety (link below) and chose which verse or passage you would have chosen, and maybe highlight it in your Bible. Then when you see those Proverbs later, those particular verses will take you right back to this Journey through the Proverbs.

Proverb 6:


Proverb 6: 16 – 19

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.

This is an amazing passage to me. First of all, it is so interesting that of the things God hates, I mean really hates, He has included haughty eyes and a lying tongue. Now we all expect Him to hate hands that shed innocent blood, feet that run to evil and a heart that devises wickedness. I don’t imagine any of that is a surprise but what about the haughty eyes and lying tongue? Did you think that God hates those as much as the others?

Secondly, the haughty eyes and lying tongue are mentioned before those heinous attributes that we all recognize as wicked. Also, the author uses a body part to describe each of the things that God hates until He gets to the end. He starts with eyes, then tongue, hands, heart and feet. When he gets to the end he just goes straight to talking about God hating a person who does these things. That is really strong. You may not have thought that spreading strife was that big a deal or making false statements, but it seems to me that those two don’t even get the benefit of a body part to hide behind. The writer just levels those straight at anyone who participates in that kind of behavior.

Lastly, I am struck that three of the things God hates have to do with how we use our mouths and two of them have to do with lying specifically. This is a great revelation. These things are an abomination to God. He hates a lying tongue, a false witness who utters lies and one who spreads strife. The first two are pretty obvious. As for strife, how is that usually spread? By the words of our mouths usually. Look, Jesus described himself as the truth so of course lying and bearing false witness are an abomination to the Lord. The truth and a lie cannot exist together. The devil, God’s mortal enemy, is the father of lies (John 8: 44) so we have no business having any part in deception of any sort. Jesus is the truth and the Holy Spirit was called, by Jesus, the Spirit of truth (John 14: 17) which stands to reason since Jesus is the truth. So, the truth is completely incompatible with deception and lying. We must choose. It is either truth or deception, God or the devil. You cannot have it both ways. Choose truth in all circumstances and don’t grieve the heart of God.

The Simple Truth

Proverbs 19:22

What is desirable in a man is his kindness, and it Is better to be a poor man than a liar.

I appreciate when God is very clear about what He wants in and from us and this verse certainly meets that litmus test. Obviously there are two parts to this. First, kindness is a premium value in God’s heart. We saw from our study of 1 Corinthians 13 that one of God’s characteristics is that He is kind. He wants us to be people of kindness too. Maybe He even expects it of us.

Kindness is one of those things which can be demonstrated in many ways. Often, kindness is found in the small matters. I think of it as preferring others’ comfort. Some people seem to have a talent for doing the small things that just make you feel better. Others of us are going to have to be purposeful about kindness. Sometimes kindness is found in the way we speak to others and well as the way we behave. The thing we can do is to ask our Father to teach us about His kindness and then be sensitive to how He leads us.

The second part of this verse really amazes me. One might expect that this is a message which never need be spoken and yet I am continually amazed at how Christians will bend the truth, avoid the truth, deceive, mislead and even outright lie. If you looked up the things God hates last week then you know that two of them are liars (Proverb 6: 16 – 19). With that staring at us, how can we still play around with this. God tells us it is better to be poor than a liar, this coming from a guy who paves His driveway with gold. Jesus told us that lies and lying are of the devil (John 8: 44) so we must do whatever is necessary to walk in the truth.

Do you think it odd that these two ideas are contained in the same sentence? It is as if God says to us that we cannot accomplish the first directive, to be kind, without first abolishing lies from our lives. And here is a news flash, just in case you didn’t know, many times, most times probably, people know when you are lying to them. They may not say anything to you (probably because they are exercising kindness) but they know. Think of that the next time you are tempted to lie. Just think, “This person is going to know that I am lying to them”. If that does not help you restrain yourself, then we need to have another discussion and that one will also involve the word kindness.

Because we truly love our Father, we want to please Him. Well, today’s verse is a prescription for doing just that. Honor others around you by telling them the truth and being kind. Remember, you do not have to do it on your own. Your Dad is happy to help you.

God is . . . joyful in truth

1 Corinthians 13: 4 – 6

Love is patient, love is kind, and is not jealous; love does not brag and is not arrogant, does not act unbecomingly; it does not seek its own, is not provoked, does not take into account a wrong suffered, does not rejoice in unrighteousness, but rejoices with the truth.

I hope you are enjoying this series on the characteristics of God. We continue with 1 Corinthians 13, delving into the very nature of God. Our Father is a God of truth. Jesus taught us that the devil is the father of lies (John 8: 44). He said of himself “I am the way, and the truth, and the life” (John 14: 6). So, Jesus told us that he is the truth and we discover from 1 Corinthians 13 that God (love) rejoices with the truth. Well, that is a no-brainer when you put the pieces together like that. Of course the Father rejoices with the truth because the truth is Jesus.

This is why lying is one of the things God hates (Proverb 6: 16 – 19). You can see why. Not only is Jesus the truth but Satan is the father of lies. Therefore, when people lie it is almost like worshiping the devil. It truly is choosing his lifestyle over Jesus’.

God rejoices in the truth and so should we. It isn’t always easy to tell the truth. I think we are afraid of the consequences of telling the truth but when you think this through, it becomes clear that the consequences of lying are higher. One cannot abide in Jesus and not also abide in truth. God speaks truth and in the truth there is freedom and power. Jesus said, “You will know the truth, and the truth will make you free” (John 8: 32). It seems obvious that God would rejoice in truth because love will always want you free. Abide in the truth. Abide in Jesus and rejoice with the Father.