Things Which the Lord Hates

Proverbs

The book of Proverbs contains wisdom to guide us through life. In it we are shown the way that is right and warned about the way that is wrong. In the following passage, the wise man warned about things which the Lord hates.

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” (Proverbs 6:16-19).

Hate is a strong word, yet that is the word given by inspiration. Therefore, we should not gloss over the items on this list; instead, we should be sure we understand what these things are and heed this warning.Continue Reading

Sermon on the Mount (Part 1): A Blessed Life

Sermon on the Mount (Part 1): A Blessed Life

Jesus began the Sermon on the Mount with statements that are commonly called the Beatitudes. In these verses, He described those who were blessed. This word does not merely mean that one is happy. Rather, to be blessed means to be approved of God. This results in true joy that surpasses the temporary moments of “happiness” in this life. This is particularly important because, as we will see, there will be times when those who are “blessed” are those who are suffering. Let us consider the Beatitudes and see how the life of a disciple is a blessed life.
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The Psalm of the Word (Part 2): Purity

The Psalm of the Word

How can a young man keep his way pure?
By keeping it according to Your word.

With all my heart I have sought You;
Do not let me wander from Your commandments.

Your word I have treasured in my heart,
That I may not sin against You.

Blessed are You, O Lord;
Teach me Your statutes.

With my lips I have told of
All the ordinances of Your mouth.

I have rejoiced in the way of Your testimonies,
As much as in all riches.

I will meditate on Your precepts
And regard Your ways.

I shall delight in Your statutes;
I shall not forget Your word.

(Psalm 119:9-16)

After emphasizing the fact that God’s word is a blessing to us, David discussed a characteristic that will be developed in the lives of those who faithfully follow the word – purity.
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How to Receive God’s Grace

Sunlight on the ocean

Any hope that we have to be saved is by the grace of God (Ephesians 2:8). God’s grace is offered to all (Titus 2:11); however, it is not received by all. How do we receive God’s grace? James explained:

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).

James’ explanation is very different from what a denominational preacher would give. Yet his explanation is “inspired by God” (2 Timothy 3:16). So let us take a closer look at what James had to say on the subject of receiving God’s grace.
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Righteous Lot

Flight of Lot

And if He condemned the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah to destruction by reducing them to ashes, having made them an example to those who would live ungodly lives thereafter; and if He rescued righteous Lot, oppressed by the sensual conduct of unprincipled men (for by what he saw and heard that righteous man, while living among them, felt his righteous soul tormented day after day by their lawless deeds), then the Lord knows how to rescue the godly from temptation, and to keep the unrighteous under punishment for the day of judgment” (2 Peter 2:6-9).

The inspired apostle Peter described Lot as being “righteous.” Yet this righteous man was not without his faults – he pitched his tent toward Sodom (Genesis 13:12), lived in Sodom (Genesis 14:12), and had to be taken by the hand to flee the city before it was destroyed (Genesis 19:16). In Lot we see one who was righteous; yet he too often focused on the wrong thing, tolerated too much, and compromised with the world.

There are some important lessons we can learn from Lot’s example – both good and bad. We will consider these lessons here.

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Joseph: The Courage to Maintain Purity

Take Courage

The second example in our study is Joseph. He had the courage to maintain purity when he was tempted to compromise his morals. When his master’s wife seduced him, this young man refused to yield, choosing instead to act in such a way that would please God.
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Making Wise Investments (Part 5): A Counterfeit Spirituality

Making Wise Investments (Part 5): A Counterfeit Spirituality

When the Lord addressed the church at Laodicea, He condemned them for practicing a spirituality that was not of the Lord, but was counterfeit. Therefore, He advised these brethren who thought they needed nothing to buy certain things from him so that they might have a real spirituality.

I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot; I wish that you were cold or hot. So because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of My mouth. Because you say, ‘I am rich, and have become wealthy, and have need of nothing,’ and you do not know that you are wretched and miserable and poor and blind and naked, I advise you to buy from Me gold refined by fire so that you may become rich, and white garments so that you may clothe yourself, and that the shame of your nakedness will not be revealed; and eye salve to anoint your eyes so that you may see” (Revelation 3:15-18).

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