Things The Lord Hates


There is a popular belief in the religious community that God is some kind of big teddy bear; a grandfather figure that does not know the meaning of the word “hate.” The concept of a god who will destroy is not very pleasant, so people ignore the thought. They go to scriptures such as Matthew 5:43-44 and John 13:34, and make statements such as, “But Jesus teaches love.” They may even go to 1 Corinthians 13 and remove it from context to try and prove their point.

Hate is a very strong word. It is one of the few words in our language that has resisted metamorphosis. Sometimes it is used in a casual sense as in, “I hate to do yard work,” but generally the word is reserved for when we feel the deepest dislike and despite.

Hate means “to loathe, detest, to despise; to feel ill will toward; to find deeply distasteful and disagreeable.” It is so strong an emotion that it can bring about change in men. At the very thought of someone or something, the stomach begins to boil and the heart rate, blood pressure and body temperature will rise. It is no wonder people consider hate a bad emotion.

But hate is an attribute of God. Proverbs 6:16-19 is probably not the kind of teaching you expect from a proverb. Modern proverbs are more catchy: “a penny saved is a penny earned,” or “a stitch in time saves nine.” But we are going to look in this passage at seven items which God finds vile and shameful. It ought to be such that we will never be involved in any of these.

I. God Hates A Proud Look

A. Other versions use the words, “haughty eyes.” A proud look has nothing to do with the way someone might cast a glance or look at someone else. In this case, it has to do with the demeanor a person displays toward another person. You can tell a lot about some people from the look in their eyes. This is especially true of those who are arrogant. We say, “they look down on people” or “look down their noses at others.”

B. It is always used in the New Testament in an evil sense of arrogance or disdain for others. A good illustration of this would be the demeanor of the Pharisees (Luke 18:9), which prompted the Lord to teach a parable showing that such pride will be humbled (Luke 18:10-14).

C. Pride builds walls, hinders us from serving and keeps us from treating our fellow man and brethren the way we should. The Lord wanted us to be “poor in spirit” (Matthew 5:3). Jesus was a meek and humble man, and yet the strongest willed man who ever lived. Only He was strong enough to say, “No,” to sin every time temptation arose. Meekness is not weakness and humility is not humiliating (1 Peter 5:6).

II. God Hates A Lying Tongue

A. When we look into the Bible, we find lying to be an attribute of the devil (John 8:44). Yet since the beginning of recorded time, this sin has plagued otherwise good men and women. But God hates a liar, no matter who it may be (Proverbs 12:22).

B. We sadly live in a society where we do not believe anyone, partly because we think lying is necessary, but it is never necessary to lie. According to the 1992-1993 Barna Report, one-third of Americans think it is sometimes necessary to lie and 52% of them say they sometimes lie.

C. Although it seems lying can get you out of trouble, it will always get you into more trouble than you get out of by telling the lie. Lying just develops more of a need to lie (Numbers 32:23). Every time you tell a lie, you lose some of your integrity, and your integrity is more important than anything you can gain from telling a lie.

D. God wants us to put away the “old man” of lying and speak the truth with one another (Ephesians 4:25; Colossians 3:9-10). Remember that it is by truth that we are sanctified (John 17:17).

III. God Hates Hands That Shed Innocent Blood

A. There are those that will tell us it is not Christian to carry out punishment that includes the death sentence, but the key word in this phrase is “innocent.”

  1. God has always hated the shedding of innocent blood. God punished Cain, the first murderer, severely for shedding innocent blood.
  2. God established Israel on a foundation of righteousness and justice (Psalm 89:14).
  3. Yet provision was made for the guilty to be punished and the innocent to go free (Deuteronomy 21:18-23; Romans 13:4).
  4. The judges of Israel were instructed to be fair and just in their decisions (Deuteronomy 16:18-20).

B. Part of the reason for the Babylonian captivity was king Manasseh who “filled Jerusalem with innocent blood” (2 Kings 24:3-4). The shedding of innocent life proceeds from a lack of respect for life. When I see the words “innocent blood,” I cannot help but think about abortion.
C. When you consider that wicked men shed the innocent blood of God’s Son, it is no wonder He hates this sin so much (Acts 2:23). Has God changed His mind (Revelation 21:8)?
D. God wants us to be fair, honest and impartial in all of our dealings, no matter who might be involved (1 Timothy 5:21; James 2:1, 9).

IV. God Hates A Heart That Devises Wicked Imaginations

A. It is one thing to sin in a moment of weakness, but quite another to plan to do it (Micah 2:1-4). This is not talking about evil thoughts but a heart that dwells on evil. If an evil thought enters your mind, you try to get it out and forget about it; you are ashamed that you even thought of it. But this is a person who sits around devising all the evil things they can do.

B. Who better to exemplify this than the Pharaoh of Egypt who, even after nine plagues which brought great disaster to Egypt, devised yet more wicked plans? Even after the tenth plague he quickly forgot his grief and determined to continue his wicked course of action.

C. The danger is that the more evil that feeds into our minds, the more clogged our minds become with those thoughts which eventually find an outlet in our actions. We need to be very careful what we think about because it reveals who we really are (Proverbs 23:7). A sinner cannot forever fill his mind with the Bible and remain a sinner, nor can a saint fill his mind with sin without becoming a sinner.

D. But as wonderful as the imagination can be, it can also be a terrible curse to those who play out evil and depraved fantasies over and over again in their minds. Whatever you fantasize about, Satan will provide an opportunity for you to carry it out.

V. God Hates Feet That Are Swift In Running To Mischief

A. It is hard for most to imagine there are actually those who hate good and love evil. Yet David warned of such in Psalm 52:3, 5. God wants us to be different (Romans 12:9).

B. This sin might be a follow up to the previous one. First, a person devises evil plans, then he runs to execute them. If a sinful mind is an abomination to the Lord, imagine how horrified He is at those who run joyfully to commit the evil in their minds! These are veterans in the army of Satan for they have conquered their consciences.

C. Feet are important in scripture. We are to have our feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace (Ephesians 6:15). The feet of all Christians, however, sometimes stumble and fall. But the writer is not talking about feet that stumble, but feet that run to evil, people whose whole lives are devoted to doing evil.

D. If someone asks you the question, “You don’t drink, you don’t smoke, or you don’t dance. What do you do for fun?” You can say, “For fun, every morning I wake up not having to feel ashamed, embarrassed or guilty about what I did the night before.”

VI. God Hates A False Witness Who Speaks Lies

A. After the people had been freed from Egyptian bondage, they were given various laws at Mount Sinai. Among these was the command not to bear false witness (Exodus 20:16).

  1. To bear false witness suggests collusion to pervert justice.
  2. We are told that a false witness shall not go unpunished (Proverbs 19:5, 9).

B. Bearing false witness reveals the heart of a man (Matthew 15:19-20). The Jews had to find such worthless men to bear witness against Jesus (Matthew 26:59-60). Gossip, slander, evil speaking, talebearing and backbiting are good examples of bearing false witness (2 Corinthians 12:20; Ephesians 4:31; 1 Peter 2:1). It topples governments; it wrecks marriages and friendships; it ruins careers; and it destroys reputations. It causes heartache and spawns suspicion.

C. A false witness is one who commits character assassination. You can invest your money wisely for financial security, exercise, eat right to make you healthy and always tell the truth to build your character, but you still cannot ensure that someone will not cause you to lose it all with his words. The only consolation is that gossipers cannot take your soul.

D. We need to be careful what we spread because as “reputable” as our source may be, he may have made an innocent mistake, or his source might not have been as reliable. We may find ourselves engaged in bearing false witness without even knowing it. But God hates slander that ruins people’s lives and reputations, and I am to hate what He hates. You might want to remember this the next time you are tempted to say something that is untrue. Remember, you will have to stand before God.

VII. God Hates One Who Sows Discord Among Brethren

A. God wants His people to be united (Ephesians 4:3).

  1. Paul told the Corinthians that strife, dissension and discord are signs of carnality and this is not acceptable among God’s people (1 Corinthians 3:1-3).
  2. The Psalmist tells us that unity is both good and pleasant (Psalm 133:1).

B. Anything that destroys unity is an abomination. Having the right attitude toward one another, loving each other and God and yearning for our fellowship to result in gaining eternity together will bring unity. Unfortunately, some brethren like to stir up trouble. The Lord avoided trouble when He could, but trouble sometimes finds godly people.

C. Think about this before you say something for no other purpose than to spread discontent. Remember, God hates such. If Matthew 5:9 were reversed, would it not state, “Cursed are the troublemakers, for they shall be called the seed of the devil?”

D. Those who intentionally spread strife are doing the devil’s work. Such people are worse than those who set fire to their neighbor’s houses because they kindle flames which will burn far longer. They not only sin themselves, they also raise and rally an army of sinners around them (Galatians 5:15).


The one point that I hope is clear in this lesson is that it is part of God’s character to hate. And if He hates these things, so should we. We are not to hate the person who does these things, but we are to hate the acts the person commits.

It is a terrible thing to do what is an abomination to the Lord (Revelation 21:27). From the heart to the feet to the lips, the Almighty hates what procures evil. Let us never succumb to the temptation to do these things.

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