Aug 02, 2020 | Lee Becknell

Innapropriate Attitudes and Actions

    Text: Proverbs 6:16-20

    A soap manufacturer and a pastor were walking together down a street in a large city. The soap manufacturer casually said, “The Gospel you preach hasn’t done much good has it? Just observe. There is still a lot of wickedness in the world, and a lot of wicked people, too!”

    The pastor made no reply until they passed a dirty little child making mud pies in the gutter. Seizing the opportunity, the pastor said, “I see that soap hasn’t done much good in the world either; for there is much dirt, and many dirty people around.”

    The soap man said, “Oh, well, soap is only useful when it is applied.”

    And the pastor said, “Exactly, so it is with the Gospel.”

    Title: “Inappropriate attitudes and actions.”

    Theme: “When everyone is doing what they think is right, moral laws and social practices are thrown out the window.  It will shock some people that God has the final say on how we are to live.  Do you know Him well enough to live a life that God respects?”

    Proverbs 16:25, “There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way to death.

    * Most of us we’re taught early on is “never say ‘hate’”.  After all, hate’s not a good thing right?  Hateful people are not the ones you want to spend time with. 

    * But we find in the Bible there are some things the Lord hates.  And in the context of these things, it’s difficult to not apply these feelings from the Lord to the individual people.  What? You heard me.  It is just logical to see those who are living this way.  And for heaven sakes don’t follow their example.

    * What are the things the Lord hates?  Six things are listed that roll up into one grand expression: “a person who stirs up conflict in the community.”  This is the pinnacle of what the Lords hates: divisiveness.

    Why does the Lord hate divisiveness?  I mean, think about it: of all the evil in the world, why does the Lord hate “a person who stirs up conflict in the community”?

    Matthew 12:25, “every kingdom divided against itself will be ruined, and every city or household divided against itself will not stand”

    This morning, I would like to share with you the following lessons.

    1. It is ok to hate certain things.

    Proverbs 6:16, “There are six things that the Lord hates, seven that are an abomination to him:”

    Beloved, let me make this very clear we are never to hate anyone.  Notice I used the word ‘things’.  You can hate things but not people. The list thought specific is not exhaustive.

    * Some think that God doesn't hate anything because He is love.  However, when you realize He loves righteousness and holiness it means that by nature, He must hate the opposite, and that is sin. 

    * Notice the word ‘abomination’ now that is a heavy word.  God feels this way over these things.  

    * Our text today represents a good list to remember because it reminds us of at least 7 things we absolutely need to steer clear of in life.  We do this because we do not want to incur God's wrath for loving something He hates.

    Proverbs 8:13, “The fear of the Lord is to hatred of evil, Pride and arrogance and he way of evil and perverted speech I hate.”

    Amos 5:15, “Hate evil, love good, and establish justice in the gate! Perhaps the Lord God of hosts may be gracious to the remnant of Joseph.”

    1. Don’t misuse the body God has given you.

    Proverbs 6:17-18, “haughty eyes, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood, 18 a heart that devises wicked plans, feet that make haste to run to evil…”

    * Haughty eyes are the spirit that makes one overestimate himself and underestimate others in terms of spirituality, knowledge, intellect, etc.

    * Such people are arrogant, un-teachable, rebellious and judgmental. They are detestable in the eyes of God because they often inspire rebellion and divisions in the body of Christ. In the Bible, we find many examples for such people.

    * One of the 10 commandments is not to bear false witness.  That means lying is out with God.  He is a God of truth, and He wants us to speak the truth. 

    * Typically, most people have an entire list of lies that they don’t consider wrong and then a separate list of deceptions that are absolutely wrong. Truth be told, there is no difference in any of these. A lie is a lie. No matter how white or little it is.

    * Most of us are not guilty of murder. But according to the Bible, all of us are because none of us can say we have never harbored hatred against another person. John likens hatred to murder because hatred is the root cause of murder and murder is the fruit of hatred.

    1 John 3:15, “Everyone who hates his fellow Christian is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life residing in him.”

    * Once again we find that one of the things God hates is listed in the 10 commandments.  You shall not murder is commandment number five.  Jesus goes further.

    Matthew 5:21-22, “You have heard that it was said to those of old, ‘You shall not murder; and whoever murders will be liable to judgment.’ 22 But I say to you that everyone who is angry with his brother will be liable to judgment; whoever insults his brother will be liable to the council; and whoever says, ‘You fool!’ will be liable to the hell of fire.”

    * Beloved, notice that it takes our hands to shed innocent blood.

    * In fact, the heart is the source of everything the writer of Proverbs mentions here: (pride, lies, hatred, etc.)

    * How does a worm get inside an apple? Perhaps you think the worm burrows in from the outside. No, scientists have discovered that the worm comes from inside. But how does he get in there? Simple! An insect lays an egg in the apple blossom. Sometime later, the worm hatches in the heart of the apple, then eats his way out. Sin, like the worm, begins in the heart and works out through a person’s thoughts, words, and actions.

    * “Feet that are quick to rush into evil” can be viewed as “the enthusiastic and complete involvement” in things that dishonor God. This happens when we know what do to and we choose not to do it.

    * When a society turns from God there is a growing stupidity and spiritual deadness that causes them to become insensitive to the warnings of Scripture.  Thus they start to run to evil rather than stop and think about the harm it will do to them and to others. 

    1. Don’t cultivate divisive characteristics.

    Proverbs 6:19, “a false witness who breathes out lies, and one who sows discord among brothers.”

    * Here we have what seems to be a second time that lying is mentioned.  The first time was just a lying tongue.  The false witness could be someone who speaks lies in a courtroom where the role of perjury comes into play.  This would mean a perversion of justice and God loves justice and righteousness.  It can also mean a false prophet or someone who lies about religious matters thus causing some to put their faith in a god who is not God at all. 

    * There is much more to this than testifying against another person because a court of law is not the only place where false witnessing can happen.

    * In the church, it can happen in the form of rumors.

    * Social Media web sites are breeding grounds for rumors today. Rumors may or may not contain elements of truth; they will always infect and contaminate the church.

    * Either way God hates it when someone who lies as a witness on a matter.  They encourage people to make decisions based upon deception and lies. 

    * The very first sin was due to the work of the devil as he was a false witness to Eve about the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.  That lie, that deceit when believed resulted in the fall of all of humanity into sin and rebellion against God.

    Four preachers met for a friendly gathering. During the conversation, one preacher said, “Our people come to us and pour out their hears, confess certain sins and needs. Let’s do the same. Confession is good for the soul.” In due time all agreed. One confessed he liked to go to movies and would sneak off when away from his church. The second confessed to liking to smoke cigars and the third one confessed to liking to play cards. When it came to the fourth one, he wouldn’t confess. The others pressed him saying, “Come now, we confessed ours. What is your secret or vice?” Finally, he answered, “It is gossiping and I can hardly wait to get out of here.”

    * The final thing in this list of seven is a person who is spreading strife among the brethren.  This person is one who either learns of strife or is causing it.   He becomes the ultimate evangelist for strife among the brethren.  He wants to see as many people upset and involved in this strife as possible. 

    * It should be no small wonder to us then that God does not say, "Blessed are the strife-makers."  He says just the opposite.  It is the peacemakers who will be called the sons of God. Matthew 5:9

    * Therefore, it really should be no shock to us that God also hates those who go the opposite way and spread strife rather than spread peace among the brothers.  We might need to remember this the next time we have a choice to continue a situation of strife or an opportunity to bring peace instead.

    * Aesop’s Fable:  A Lion used to prowl about a field in which Four Oxen used to dwell. Many a time he tried to attack them, but whenever he came near they turned their tails to one another so that whichever way he approached them he was met by the horns of one of them. At last, however, the Lion managed to turn them against each other. They fell a-quarrelling among themselves, and each went off to pasture alone in a separate corner of the field. Then the Lion attacked them one by one and soon made an end of all four.

    * In 1981, a Minnesota radio station reported a story about a stolen car in California. Police were staging an intense search for the vehicle and the driver, even to the point of placing announcements on local radio stations to contact the thief. On the front seat of the stolen car sat a box of crackers that, unknown to the thief, were laced with poison. The car owner had intended to use the crackers as rat bait.  Now the police and the owner of the Volkswagen Bug were more interested in apprehending the thief to save his life than to recover the car. Often when we run from God, we feel it is to escape His punishment. But what we are actually doing is eluding His rescue.

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