Learning to Hate What God Hates.
“There are six things the Lord hates — no, seven things he detests…” – Proverbs 6:16 NLT
There are many in our world who refuse to believe in God. There are others who believe in God, but their version of Him is of their own making. They have chosen attributes and qualities they find comforting and non-convicting. They worship a God who is nothing but love, all the time. They tend to reject the God of the Old Testament as some other God. He is too angry, vengeful, and barbaric for their tastes. The prefer the God of the New Testament who sends His Son to die for mankind as an expression of His love for them. But when we reject the God of the Old Testament, we diminish the One we say we believe in. God is loving, but He is righteous and just as well. He is holy and, because of that character, He is required to deal with all unholiness. He must judge sin justly and completely. And God hates sin – all sin. As uncomfortable as it may make us feel, our God hates. Multiple times in the book of Proverbs we are reminded of His divine hatred. But we must never confuse God’s hatred with our own. His is perfect, holy, sinless, and completely justified. He understands the danger of sin and the damage it can produce in our lives. So Solomon tells us that there are six things the Lord hates – no seven things he detests. He hates them because they are an abomination to Him. He finds them shameful, unacceptable, and abhorrent.
We expect the list that follows this statement to be filled with some pretty horrible acts, like murder, rape, incest, genocide, etc. But instead, we read that God hates haughty or pride-filled eyes, lying, those who take life without cause, a heart that plans to do evil, feet that race to do wrong, a false witness, and one who stirs up trouble within a family. Interesting list, isn’t it? Only one seems to be what we would classify as worthy of hate, because it involves the taking of an innocent person’s life. But I think Solomon is showing us that, in God’s eyes, all of these things are hated equally because they are all detestable to Him. He hates the pride in our lives as much as He does the taking of innocent an life. All of these things are in violation of God’s law. He hates them because He is holy and righteous. His anger is His reaction to the breaking of His perfect law. As a just judge, He must deal with them rightly and righteously. Solomon is fully aware that his God hates sin and he wants his son to know it as well. So he warns him that these things are an abomination to God. They are not to be tolerated, played with, excused or minimized. When we see pride in our lives, we must remind ourselves that God hates it. When we lie, we must remember that God hates it. When we find ourselves thinking about doing anything that God deems wrong, or running ahead and doing it without even thinking, we must never forget that God hates it. God will not wink at it or ignore it like we do. His holy character will not allow it. He hates them because He knows their destructive quality and that each of them is really an assault on His sovereignty over our lives. He wants us to learn to hate what He hates and love what He loves. He wants us to know Him well enough that we share His heart. He wants us to get to the point in our relationship with Him that what He abhors, we abhor. Recognizing that God has high standards and a zero-tolerance for these things is key to wanting to work hand-in-hand with the Holy Spirit to see them removed from our lives. Our cry becomes the cry of David, “Create in my a clean heart, O God. Renew a loyal spirit within me” (Psalm 51:10 NLT).
Father, teach me to hate what You hate, to abhor what You find abhorrent. Don’t let me become complacent with sin in my life or in the world around me. Let me know Your heart and learn to love what You love and hate what You hate. Amen
Grow Pastor & Minister to Men