In search of Wisdom

 

 

          Greetings precious people, I do hope that you are doing well today and rejoicing in the goodness of the Lord Jesus Christ. As we continue in our study of in search of wisdom we come to the sixth chapter of the Book of Proverbs. Before getting into the first few verses, I want to again encourage you to take time today to read a chapter or two of this wonderful book that God has given such practical insightful wisdom for everyday living.

            In Proverbs 6:1-5 we have this very thing of practical wisdom in regards to co-signing for someone. We read, “My son, if you become surety (co-sign) for your friend, if you have shaken hands in pledge for a stranger, you are snared by the words of your mouth; you are taken by the words of your mouth. So do this, my son, and deliver yourself; for you have come into the hand of your friend: go and humble yourself; plead with your friend. Give no sleep to your eyes, nor slumber to your eyelids. Deliver yourself like a gazelle from the hand of the hunter, and like a bird from the hand of the fowler.”

            There have been numerous problems that have arisen out of becoming surety (co-signing) for another person, whether friend or relative. What many people do not realize that if the person for whom you co-sign for is unable to pay their payments for any reason at all; you become liable for the debt. Not only will this unexpected increase in debt be a hardship on you and your family but also it will also adversely affect your relationship with whom you co-signed for. Many friendships and family relationships have suffered unnecessarily due to co-signing. I advise avoiding it at all costs.

            Next Solomon addresses the subject of laziness. In Proverbs 6:6-15 we read, “Go to the ant, you sluggard! Consider her ways and be wise, which, having no captain,

overseer or ruler, provides her supplies in the summer, and gathers her food in the harvest. How long will you slumber, O sluggard? When will you rise from your sleep?

A little sleep, a little slumber, A little folding of the hands to sleep-- So shall your poverty come on you like a prowler, and your need like an armed man. A worthless person, a wicked man, walks with a perverse mouth; He winks with his eyes, he shuffles his feet, he points with his fingers; perversity is in his heart, he devises evil continually,

he sows discord. Therefore his calamity shall come suddenly; suddenly he shall be broken without remedy.”

            Laziness is something that the Lord does not look upon positively. There is no good excuse for laziness. God has given each of us a number of abilities and gifts expecting them to be used for His glory, our good, and the good of others. When a person is lazy everyone suffers. Consider the effect that laziness has on our society today. A growing number of people are content to just lie around allowing others to do the work while they receive the benefits. It has been said and I think rightly so that, 90% of the work is done by 10% of the people while 10% of the work is done by 90% of the people. Unfortunately this is true in many churches as well. Another product of laziness is the increasing cases of obesity. Laziness has no redeeming value to it.

            Solomon next covers 7 things that God hates. In Proverbs 6:16-19 we read, “These six things the LORD hates, yes, seven are an abomination to Him: 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.”

Now it may be a surprise to some of you that God would hate anything but He does. People have many wrong ideas about God, especially when it comes to the most prominent characteristic of God, which is love. God being a God of love does not preclude Him from hating anything or anyone. True love must hate evil and wickedness.

            There are a number of verses in the Word of God; the Bible that makes it clear that God hates things. In Deuteronomy 12:31, "You shall not worship the LORD your God in that way; for every abomination to the LORD which He hates they have done to their gods; for they burn even their sons and daughters in the fire to their gods.” This area that God is speaking about is the offering of children to be sacrificed to the gods of Baal and Molech. These were pagan deities of the Canaanites. The people of Canaan were very much involved in sexual perversion as part of their worship. An obvious results were children that were unwanted and would act as a hindrance to their “free sex” lifestyles. The solution that they arrived at to take care of these unwanted children was to offer them to their gods. They would burn them alive.

            This I hope appears as cruel and barbaric to you but what we do in our society today is no different in principle. With the sexual practices of our day, many unwanted children are conceived. Yes I said children, not fetuses as they are often referred to today. These children are either burned alive in the mother’s womb by a highly concentrated saline solution that is injected into the womb or they are ripped apart piece by piece in the womb and then discarded like garbage. This is all done in order to continue the life style that we have become used to. A great tragedy indeed. Be assured, God hates what is going on in our country and will one day bring judgment upon us.

            There are many more things that the Lord hates. Some of them are listed in the following verses. Isaiah 61:8, "For I, the LORD, love justice; I hate robbery for burnt offering.” Zechariah 8:17, “Let none of you think evil in your heart against your neighbor; and do not love a false oath. For all these are things that I hate,' says the LORD." Malachi 2:16, "For the LORD God of Israel says that He hates divorce.” 

            There is another thing that God mentions in the New Testament that He hates. It is found in Revelation 2:6 and 15, “But this you have, that you hate the deeds of the Nicolaitans, which I also hate.” The word Nicolaitans is a Greek compound word. ‘Nico’ means over, power over the people and ‘laitians’, which means the laity, or common people.

There were those in the early church just as there are in the church today that feel that they should rule over the people like a king or dictator rules over people in their kingdom. Jesus hates this. He gave clear instruction to His disciples and everyone that would pastor any church how He would have them lead.  In Luke 22:24-27 we read, “Now there was also a dispute among them (the disciples), as to which of them should be considered the greatest. And He (Jesus) said to them, "The kings of the Gentiles exercise lordship over them, and those who exercise authority over them are called 'benefactors.' But not so among you; on the contrary, he who is greatest among you let him be as the younger, and he who governs as he who serves. For who is greater, he who sits at the table, or he who serves? Is it not he who sits at the table? Yet I am among you as the One who serves.”

And then the Apostle Peter would write this in 1 Peter 5:1-3, “The elders who are among you I exhort, I who am a fellow elder and a witness of the sufferings of Christ, and also a partaker of the glory that will be revealed:  Shepherd the flock of God which is among you, serving as overseers, not by compulsion but willingly, not for dishonest gain but eagerly; nor as being lords over those entrusted to you, but being examples to the flock.”

            As we have clearly seen from the preceding verses, there are numerous things that God hates and it would do us good to follow His example. We should hate the things that God hates. In Psalm 97:10, we read, “You who love the LORD, hate evil!” and in Proverbs 8:13, “The fear of the LORD is to hate evil; pride and arrogance and the evil way and the perverse mouth I hate.”

            The pervasive teaching of our day is tolerance. We are encouraged to tolerate all kinds of evil and wickedness, to not call anything bad no matter how perverse or reprobate it may be. God does not see things this way and He never will nor should anyone that considers themselves to be His children.

We have run out of time and space. Next time we will look more closely at the 7 things that Solomon says that God hates. Until then may the Lord richly bless you beloved.

If you have any questions, comments, or prayer requests you can contact me at: Calvary Chapel of Alpine, P.O. Box 1528, Alpine, Ca. 91903 or call 619-445-2589, or e-mail ccalpine@juno.com or visit our web site to read all previous articles at www.calvarychapel.org/alpine/index.htm

Drew Macintyre is pastor of Calvary Chapel of Alpine