Chapter 1.
Proverbs on Abomination

The word "abomination" is from the Hebrew word to ̀ebah {to-ay-baw'} which means" a disgusting thing; something that is terrible, morally repulsive, or wicked." This word occurs more than 100 times in the Old Testament and it refers to such things as idolatry, homosexuality, human sacrifices, and occult practices.

1 Kings 21:26—And he did very abominably in following idols, according to all things as did the Amorites, whom the Lord cast out before the children of Israel.

Leviticus 18:22—Thou shalt not lie with mankind, as with womankind: it is abomination.

Deuteronomy 12:31—Thou shalt not do so unto the Lord thy God: for every abomination to the Lord, which he hateth, have they done unto their gods; for even their sons and their daughters they have burnt in the fire to their gods.

Deuteronomy 18:912—When thou art come into the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee, thou shalt not learn to do after the abominations of those nations. [10] There shall not be found among you any one that maketh his son or his daughter to pass through the fire, or that useth divination, or an observer of times, or an enchanter, or a witch, [11] Or a charmer, or a consulter with familiar spirits, or a wizard, or a necromancer. [12] For all that do these things are an abomination unto the Lord: and because of these abominations the Lord thy God doth drive them out from before thee.

The importance of this study in Proverbs is to help us understand what is an abomination to God and what He finds disgusting. Such knowledge will help us to keep our nose out of trouble. We will look at three areas in this study.


A. A Fastuous or Proud Look

Proverbs 16:5—Every one that is proud in heart is an abomination to the Lord: though hand join in hand, he shall not be unpunished

The Bible makes it very clear that God hates human pride. The proud, cocky, nose-in-the-air "look" that has a defiant, rebellious attitude toward God is repulsive to the Lord. William Barclay said, "Pride is the ground in which all the other sins grow, and the parent from which all the other sins come." If we're going to get rid of the poisonous fruit, we have to attack the dangerous root. That's a painful thing to do. When we get proud, we resist God's leadership and start believing that we are able to live without His help. Whenever you find yourself wanting to do it your way and looking down on other people, you are being pulled by pride.

James reveals that the Lord resists those who are proud (James 4:6). Why does God hate human pride so much? Because it is the one sin that keeps us from allowing God to use us for His purposes. When we commit ourselves to doing things our way, we are in no position to do things God's way. Pride renders us useless in the kingdom of God. We fall prey to pride when we forget that God does not exist for us, but we exist for Him. Only when you eliminate pride can God help you become all he meant you to be. The sooner you realize this in your teen years, the fewer mistakes you will make as you continue to grow.

Pride also has everything backwards. It takes credit or glory away from the Giver who gives graciously, and awards it to the receiver who takes without thanking. The saintly Scottish preacher James Denney said, "No man can bear witness to Christ and to himself at the same time. No man can give the impression that he himself is clever and that Christ is mighty to save." Taking credit for what God has done is why God sees it as an abomination, a word throughout Proverbs refers to God's revulsion.

The Lord refuses to share His glory with anyone. Pride is the inner voice that whispers, "My way is best." When we seek to take His glory for ourselves saying, in effect, "Look at what I have accomplished! Look at me! Look at who I am!" we deny that everything we accomplish comes about because God enables and empowers us to accomplish it. Beloved, any good in us is by His design and redemption. Anything noteworthy that we become, we become, because He has enabled us. We have no goodness apart from God's goodness imparted to us.

When we get proud, we will eventually be punished no matter what we do to try to avoid judgment. You can link hands with others for protection, but it will be futile. You may be proud because you are smart, strong, wealthy or beautiful. Realize that such pride will eventually lead to your downfall. Men like Goliath, Samson, Saul, and the rich farmer found out the hard way.

Proverbs 6:16,17a—These six things doth the Lord hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto him: [17] A proud look,....

A proud look in the Hebrew reads "haughty, high or lofty eyes." It suggests arrogant ambition that leaves God out of one's life or plans. It is the attitude that overvalues self and undervalues others, causing people to look down their nose at others. The proud man considers himself a "cut above" everyone else. He disdains those folks whom he thinks are a cut below him. This was the attitude of the Pharisee who thanked God he was not like someone else.

It is interesting to note that most of the Hebrew words for "pride" are also words for the exaltation and majesty of God. For example, the word "proud" in 6:17 means "to exalt."

Psalm 34:3—O magnify the Lord with me, and let us exalt his name together

In Proverbs 16:18, it says that "Pride goes before destruction." That word for pride is translated "majesty" in Isaiah 2:10 and Micah 5:4.

Isaiah 2:10—Enter into the rock, and hide thee in the dust, for fear of the Lord, and for the glory of his majesty

Micah 5:4a—And he shall stand and feed in the strength of the Lord, in the majesty of the name of the Lord his God....

It is to the Lord alone, that majesty, exaltation, and glory belong. Yet, the pride of man and the majesty of God are in constant conflict and rivalry. The man that considers himself to be a "cut above" others is a fool. The man that believes he is a "cut above" God is an even greater fool. His attitude is an abomination to the Lord.

When we look through the Bible, we find that lofty eyes or a proud countenance is associated with wickedness. God warns extensively of His judgment toward those who have a proud countenance.

Psalm 10:4—The wicked, through the pride of his countenance, will not seek after God: God is not in all his thoughts.

Psalm 18:27—For thou wilt save the afflicted people; but wilt bring down high looks.

Psalm 101:5—Whoso privily slandereth his neighbour, him will I cut off: him that hath an high look and a proud heart will not I suffer.

Isaiah 2:11—The lofty looks of man shall be humbled, and the haughtiness of men shall be bowed down, and the Lord alone shall be exalted in that day.

Isaiah 3:9—The shew of their countenance doth witness against them; and they declare their sin as Sodom, they hide it not. Woe unto their soul! for they have rewarded evil unto themselves.

An article titled "The Art of Being a Big Shot" was written by a very prominent Christian businessman named Howard Butt. Among many other insightful things he said were these words: It is my pride that makes me independent of God. It's appealing to me to feel that I am the master of my fate, that I run my own life, call my own shots, go it alone. But that feeling is my basic dishonesty.

I can't go it alone. I have to get help from other people, and I can't ultimately rely on myself. I'm dependent on God for my next breath. It is dishonest of me to pretend that I'm anything but a man—small, weak, and limited. So, living independent of God is self-delusion. It is not just a matter of pride being an unfortunate little trait and humility being an attractive little virtue; it's my inner psychological integrity that's at stake. When I am conceited, I am lying to myself about what I am. I am pretending to be God, and not man. My pride is the idolatrous worship of myself, and that is the national religion of Hell!

Beloved, he was right. A proud look is an abomination to God. We could not survive without the Lord's help at all. Jesus said in John 15:5, "Without me you can do nothing!"

B. A Fraudulent or Lying Tongue

Proverbs 6:16,17b—These six things doth the Lord hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto him:....a lying tongue...

Proverbs 12:22—Lying lips are abomination to the Lord: but they that deal truly are his delight.

The father of all lies is Satan himself. Satan is the composer of corruption, the penman of perversion, the designer of deception, the architect of apostasy, the contriver of cults, and the ruler of rebellion. His mission in the Garden of Eden was to deceive Adam and Eve. He succeeded with Eve, but Adam sinned with eyes wide open.

1 Timothy 2:14—And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in the transgression.

Liars are repulsive because their speech is untrustworthy and at odds with the ways of righteousness. They follow the path that Satan has blazed for mankind. God hates exaggeration, fraud, misrepresentation, false witnessing, and slander. He loves truthfulness.

Psalm 51:6—Behold, thou desirest truth in the inward parts: and in the hidden part thou shalt make me to know wisdom.

Deception and lies hurt people, deeply wounding their hearts and their trust in people. Lies make people skeptical of others and about life itself. Some conclude, "If you can't trust anyone, then why live at all?" Others feel that if everyone else is a cheat, then they will cheat too, and get what they believe they deserve. They become what they hate. They become liars.

The ability to lie is always a liability. Lying hurts you the most. Those who are given to white lies soon become color blind. They cannot see the truth because they have become numbed by their dishonesty. In fact, they end up deceiving themselves about the importance and imminence of salvation. They delay their decision until one day, they cannot make it because they are dead. It is then they will scream to make their decision for Christ, but it will be too late. If a person dies without Christ, he will spend eternity in Hell with all the other liars.

Ezekiel 13:22—Because with lies ye have made the heart of the righteous sad, whom I have not made sad; and strengthened the hands of the wicked, that he should not return from his wicked way, by promising him life:

Revelation 21:8—But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.

God's abhorrence for lying is seen in the book of Acts 5. Ananias and his wife Sapphira were members in the church at Jerusalem. They sold some property and gave a large offering to the apostles, but they lied in keeping back some for themselves. The truth came out and the lie was exposed. C. S. Lewis said, "A little lie is like a little pregnancy—it doesn't take long before everyone knows."

Beloved, when we lie, it comes back to haunt us. We reap what we sow when we lie. A melon farmer's crop of melons was disappearing fast from his field. Thieves were continually stealing the melons under the cover of night's darkness. The farmer finally became desperate and in an attempt to save his crop from the vandals he decided to put up a deceptive, intimidating sign.

The sign had on it a skull and crossbones, and it read: "One of these melons is poisoned." Only the farmer knew that it was not true. Sure enough, for two nights not a melon was missing, but, after the third night, the farmer noticed that his sign had been altered. Someone had scratched out the word "one" and replaced it with another word so that the sign now read: "Two of these melons are poisoned." Thinking to save his whole crop through lying or deception, he lost it all, which just goes to illustrate Sir Walter Scott's observation:

Oh, what a tangled web we weave,

When first we practice to deceive!

C. Ferocious people that kill the Innocent are an Abomination

Proverbs 6:16,17c—These six things doth the Lord hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto him:....hands that shed innocent blood....

Satan was a murderer from the very beginning according to the Bible (John 8:44). If only Eve could have seen the end of the path that she had chosen, perhaps she would not have listened to the serpent. Little did she realize that the first baby born into this world would grow up to be a murderer. Since the murder of Abel, rivers of the blood of men, women, and children have flowed through history at the hands of killers. Like the waves that roll into the shore with regularity and consistency, the crimson waves from those who have been slain flow with regularity day by day at the hands of bloody men, women, and unfortunately, children. Those who should be innocent are killing the innocent.

The Lord hates murderous hands! The blood-stained fingers of Cain, Ahab, Absalom, Joab, Ahimelech, and Athaliah were repulsive in the eyes of God Almighty. Our Lord loves life, for He is the living God, and He gives life and breath to all. Life is sacred, not because man is special, but because God creates it and defends it! Things like the atrocities in Africa or the slaughter of babies in abortion mills, are abominations to God. Heavy will be the judgment on the mothers that killed their babies and the doctors that aborted them.

The popular idea today is completely opposite of Bible times. After a man has been killed, the murderer is brought to trial, then suddenly the life of the killer is considered to be precious. God says that human life is precious and that when a murderer kills a man, he is to forfeit his own life. That is the teaching of the Word of God. The only hope for folks who have done this abomination is to repent and trust Christ as their Savior.

D. The Fiendish Fancies or Schemes of the Wicked

Proverbs 6:16,18a—These six things doth the Lord hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto him:.... [18] An heart that deviseth wicked imaginations,...

The heart that devises wicked plans or imaginations is an abomination to the Lord. The heart is the nest where these wicked schemes are birthed.

Matthew 15:19—For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies:

This word "deviseth" in Proverbs 6:18 is most interesting. It is from the Hebrew word charash {khaw-rash'} which means "to cut into something, engrave, or to plough, such as land for farming." When you cut into something or engrave it, you are demonstrating planned intentions, and a mind that has been made up. There is no turning back when you cut or engrave something. Once it is done, it is done, especially when you are cutting into metal or flesh.

There are people that have this kind of mentality today. They are bent on or determined to fulfill their wicked imaginations. The wicked intentions of their hearts are not an accident. They are deliberately preparing to do that which is wrong just like a farmer deliberately prepares the soil of his field by ploughing it. The thoughts of these folks are consumed with destruction and the fulfillment of their wicked whims. This kind of attitude reveals the person has a damaged conscience and is no rookie when it comes to wretched living. They have erred or wandered far away from the Lord.

Proverbs 14:22—Do they not err that devise evil? but mercy and truth shall be to them that devise good.

Wicked imaginations or schemes are an abomination to God. In fact, He considers these kinds of folks as "troublemakers."

Proverbs 24:8—He that deviseth to do evil shall be called a mischievous person.

God's Word provides us with object lessons of this kind of atrocity. It was the wicked imaginations of the human race that led to the Genesis Flood.

Genesis 6:5—And God saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.

Another classic example is found in the wicked schemes of King Ahab and Jezebel, who schemed, lied, cheated, and killed Naboth to get control of his vineyards. Then there is the plot of wicked Haman who schemed to destroy Mordecai and the Jewish people. God intervened on their behalf and they were spared. He turned the tables on Haman as he was hung on the gallows that he prepared for Mordecai. The presidents of the Persian empire devised a wicked scheme to destroy Daniel. They persuaded the king to pass a law that prohibited prayer, knowing that this would lead to Daniel's demise. Daniel was not intimidated by the death threat of this law. He was thrown into the lions' den, but was delivered by God. Deception was a key ingredient of these schemes and it confirms the truth of Proverbs 12:20.

Proverbs 12:20a—Deceit is in the heart of them that imagine evil:...

E. Fervor and Fleetness for Trouble

Proverbs 6:16,18b—These six things doth the Lord hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto him:....feet that be swift in running to mischief,

The pattern for running to mischief is seen in Satan himself as he endeavored to destroy the life of Job as swift as possible. Satan roamed the earth and was up to no good.

Job 1:6-7—Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan came also among them. [7] And the Lord said unto Satan, Whence comest thou? Then Satan answered the Lord, and said, From going to and fro in the earth, and from walking up and down in it.

Job became the focus of the conversation and the Lord defied Satan to get Job to turn his back on God. The Lord gave Satan permission to remove Job's wealth, health, and family, but not his life. Satan wasted no time. He was swift in running to mischief.

Job 1:16-19—While he was yet speaking, there came also another, and said, The fire of God is fallen from heaven, and hath burned up the sheep, and the servants, and consumed them; and I only am escaped alone to tell thee. [17] While he was yet speaking, there came also another, and said, The Chaldeans made out three bands, and fell upon the camels, and have carried them away, yea, and slain the servants with the edge of the sword; and I only am escaped alone to tell thee. [18] While he was yet speaking, there came also another, and said, Thy sons and thy daughters were eating and drinking wine in their eldest brother's house: [19] And, behold, there came a great wind from the wilderness, and smote the four corners of the house, and it fell upon the young men, and they are dead; and I only am escaped alone to tell thee.

Some people are like Satan. They are not only evil schemers, they are consumed with wickedness to the point that they run to it. There is an eagerness and an urgency to indulge in iniquity. No step is spared, no second is wasted, no expense is too great. These folks are quick to do that which is wrong because it is such a part of their character. Like metal shavings to a magnet, these sinners are drawn to wrong and they leave shambles in their shadow.

Isaiah 59:7—Their feet run to evil, and they make haste to shed innocent blood: their thoughts are thoughts of iniquity; wasting and destruction are in their paths.

When I read about feet that were swift in running to mischief, the first people that came to mind were again King Ahab and Jezebel. "Evil and Ahab" or "evil and Jezebel" are synonymous. If you call a woman a Jezebel today, you are insulting her. You are calling her an evil woman.

We have seen so far, five things that are an abomination to the Lord.

F. A False Witness

Proverbs 6:16,19a—These six things doth the Lord hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto him:.... [19] A false witness that speaketh lies,

God hates perjury and a witness that lies. A court of law has such a drastic effect upon people's lives. The testimony of a false witness has devastating consequences. False witnesses were hired to testified against Naboth, so that Ahab and Jezebel could take control of his vineyards after he was executed.

1 Kings 21:9-10—... And she wrote in the letters, saying, Proclaim a fast, and set Naboth on high among the people: [10] And set two men, sons of Belial, before him, to bear witness against him, saying, Thou didst blaspheme God and the king. And then carry him out, and stone him, that he may die.

False witnesses also spoke against the Lord at His trial.

Matthew 26:60—But found none: yea, though many false witnesses came, yet found they none. At the last came two false witnesses,

When the Christian lives an inconsistent, ungodly life, he too, becomes a false witness concerning Jesus Christ. He damages his testimony and the cause of Christ in reaching others. Henry Drummond, that great Scottish professor, told how the Infidel Club was started in Glasgow. Some men were standing at the corner of a street when a very prosperous looking man went past. One of the men said, "That is the founder of the Infidel Club in Glasgow." "What do you mean by that?" said another of the men. "Why, that man is a deacon of the church." "Deacon or no deacon," replied the man, "he is the founder of Glasgow's Infidel Club." Then he told how the man's inconsistent life had been bearing for years a false witness to Christ. So false, in fact, that it had undermined the faith of several young men who joined together to form the Infidel Club.

Beloved, our hypocrisy can cause a person to choose a path that leads to Hell. Be careful how you are living and don't be a stumbling block to others.

G. Fanning the Fires of Friction or Strife

Proverbs 6:16,19b—These six things doth the Lord hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto him:........and he that soweth discord among brethren.

How many churches have been split by the sowers of discord? How many teams have been defeated or families divided by the sowers of discord? It is a cold heart that takes delight in hurting and dividing people. Such a heart is an abomination to the Lord. These folks are worse than the arsonist that sets a neighbor's house on fire. They kindle flames which set families, governments, and even nations on fire. Satan stirred up the flames of animosity between Cain and Abel, Ishmael and Isaac, Esau and Jacob, and Joseph's brothers against Joseph. Jereboam's sowing of the seeds of strife led to the idolatry of his people.

1 Kings 16:26—For he walked in all the way of Jeroboam the son of Nebat, and in his sin wherewith he made Israel to sin, to provoke the Lord God of Israel to anger with their vanities.

On the other hand, God's blessings are upon those who sow peace instead of strife.

Matthew 5:9—Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God.

As you look at your behavior, do you find yourself undermining the leadership of others or turning people against one another because of your selfishness or petty jealousy?

H. A False Balance and Faulty Weights

Proverbs 20:10—Divers weights, and divers measures, both of them are alike abomination to the Lord.

Proverbs 20:23—Divers weights are an abomination unto the Lord; and a false balance is not good.

Proverbs 11:1—A false balance is abomination to the Lord: but a just weight is his delight.

The Hebrew reads "scales of deception" are an abomination to the Lord. This refers to dishonesty in the market where silver was weighed in the scales. Crooked merchants sometimes had two sets of weights, one for buying and one for selling. The buying weights were heavier than they should have been, so that he got more merchandise than he paid for. The selling weights were lighter than the standard, so that the customer got less than he paid for. God condemns dishonest business practices.

Deuteronomy 25:13-16—... Thou shalt not have in thy bag divers weights, a great and a small. [14] Thou shalt not have in thine house divers measures, a great and a small. [15] But thou shalt have a perfect and just weight, a perfect and just measure shalt thou have: that thy days may be lengthened in the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee. [16] For all that do such things, and all that do unrighteously, are an abomination unto the Lord thy God.

When we try to cheat others in our business practices, we will eventually reap what we sow. For example, every day, a certain farmer delivered a pound of butter to the baker, but the baker began to notice that the pound of butter was becoming smaller and smaller and smaller. "My goodness," he thought, "I'm being systematically cheated." So he reported it to the town constable. The baker and the constable went to the farmer's farm, where the farmer was accused of shortchanging the baker. "But the butter I give him weighs one pound," the farmer insisted. The constable asked, "What are you using for a weight?" "The baker's one-pound loaf of bread," the farmer replied. Thus, the baker was caught in his own trap.

A just weight or perfect stones were used to measure silver on the scales. These stones gave honest, accurate measurements. Our preaching and the way we conduct our business should be this way too. It should be honest and accurate. Christian business men should be men of integrity because they are ambassadors of Christ. Their actions should reflect the righteousness of God. Integrity will build a business, for your customers will become your bill boards. They will become your "Yellow Pages." By word of mouth, they will tell others of your integrity and the way you conduct your business. Not only will the Lord be delighted with you, but also the people who do business with you.

I. The Futile Sacrifices of the Wicked

Proverbs 15:8—The sacrifice of the wicked is an abomination to the Lord: but the prayer of the upright is his delight

Why are these sacrifices an abomination? The answer is they are a big FIB: They are "F" fake, "I" insincere, and "B" blasphemous. The heart of the wicked is not yielded to the Lord. In fact, it is in defiance. The purpose of the sacrifice of the wicked is either to make the sacrificer look good, to ease his guilty conscience, or the sacrifice has been inwardly offered with resistance or a rebellious spirit. He feels forced to make the sacrifice. This would be like someone giving you a Christmas present saying, "Here! Take it! I didn't want to do this, but I didn't want to look bad, being the only one who did not give you a gift!" That would go over real big with you, wouldn't it? Ha! If someone did that with me I would tell them to keep their gift. I don't want it! The Lord is the same way. He wants our heart, our love, our genuine praise, and our obedience to Him.

In Ezra 4:3, we read that when Israel's enemies came to Zerubbabel and offered to help build the temple, in a nutshell, he basically said, "You have nothing to do with us to build a house unto our God." Wicked people often seek to appease their conscience by making donations or offering assistance to the Lord's work, but this is abominable to Him.

Let me say that you can be a good person and do all kinds of religious or good deeds, but if you have not asked the Lord Jesus Christ to cleanse you of your sins and put your faith in Him for your salvation, your efforts, deeds, or sacrifices are of no merit at all with God. Your unwillingness to do this demonstrates your willfulness and resistance toward God's plan of salvation. You stand before Him as a condemned sinner. If you did not know this was God's way to Heaven, you know now. Will you receive Jesus Christ as your Savior now? Beloved, the spiritual condition of the worshiper determines whether or not the sacrifice or the worship is pleasing and acceptable to the Lord.

Psalm 51:16-17—... For thou desirest not sacrifice; else would I give it: thou delightest not in burnt offering. [17] The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise.

Proverbs 21:3—To do justice and judgment is more acceptable to the Lord than sacrifice.

Micah 6:6-8—... Wherewith shall I come before the Lord, and bow myself before the high God? shall I come before him with burnt offerings, with calves of a year old? [7] Will the Lord be pleased with thousands of rams, or with ten thousands of rivers of oil? shall I give my firstborn for my transgression, the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul? [8] He hath shewed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the Lord require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?

Proverbs 15:29—The Lord is far from the wicked: but he heareth the prayer of the righteous.

Proverbs 28:9—He that turneth away his ear from hearing the law, even his prayer shall be abomination.

Isaiah 1:11-16—... To what purpose is the multitude of your sacrifices unto me? saith the Lord: I am full of the burnt offerings of rams, and the fat of fed beasts; and I delight not in the blood of bullocks, or of lambs, or of he goats. [12] When ye come to appear before me, who hath required this at your hand, to tread my courts? [13] Bring no more vain oblations; incense is an abomination unto me; the new moons and sabbaths, the calling of assemblies, I cannot away with; it is iniquity, even the solemn meeting. [14] Your new moons and your appointed feasts my soul hateth: they are a trouble unto me; I am weary to bear them. [15] And when ye spread forth your hands, I will hide mine eyes from you: yea, when ye make many prayers, I will not hear: your hands are full of blood. [16] Wash you, make you clean; put away the evil of your doings from before mine eyes; cease to do evil;

Proverbs 21:27—The sacrifice of the wicked is abomination: how much more, when he bringeth it with a wicked mind?

Worship that is hypocritical is bad enough, but worship that has evil intentions is absolutely atrocious. Worship without repentance is "going through the motions of futility." Worship done with the intention of corrupting others or furthering wickedness is horrific to the Lord. The depths to men's sinfulness are without bound.

Albert Einstein, in a lecture given in 1948, spoke of the nature of man in relation to the world: "The true problem lies in the hearts and thoughts of men. It is not a physical but an ethical one.... What terrifies us is not the explosive force of the atomic bomb, but the power of the wickedness of the human heart."

Let me say that religions today have the idea that religious sacrifices can be offered for any offense without genuine repentance or submission to the Lord. God makes it clear this "ain't gonna happen!" Without Christ in our hearts, our righteousness is a pile of rags in the site of God.

Isaiah 64:6—But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away.

J. Faithless, False-hearted Prayers

Proverbs 28:9—He that turneth away his ear from hearing the law, even his prayer shall be abomination.

The phrase "turneth away his ear" is from the Hebrew word cuwr {soor}. It means "to depart, to avoid, to turn aside or away." This verse describes the person that deliberately refuses to listen or follow God's Word. This was a problem in the lives of God's people all throughout Scripture.

Zechariah 7:12—Yea, they made their hearts as an adamant stone, lest they should hear the law, and the words which the Lord of hosts hath sent in his spirit by the former prophets: therefore came a great wrath from the Lord of hosts.

Psalm 50:17—Seeing thou hatest instruction, and castest my words behind thee.

Matthew 13:15—For this people's heart is waxed gross, and their ears are dull of hearing, and their eyes they have closed; lest at any time they should see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and should understand with their heart, and should be converted, and I should heal them.

God's people at times would turn away their ears from listening to His Word, yet, they had the audacity to pray to the God they were ignoring. Such thinking reveals a confused person that does not understand the seriousness of their sin and the futility of their efforts. It reveals an attitude of hypocrisy too.

The Lord does not listen to these kinds of prayers because they are frequently selfish and demanding of the Lord. They are contrary to His will or His Word. God does not listen to our prayers if we intend to go back to our sin as soon as we get off our knees. If a man is willfully deaf to God's instructions, then the Lord is deaf to his prayers, unless it is a prayer of repentance. If you want the Lord to listen to you, you must listen to Him first. The unrepentant prayer of the godless man that will not listen to God's Word is an abomination to the Lord.

Psalm 66:18—If I regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not hear me.

Isaiah 59:2—But your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid his face from you, that he will not hear.

The famous preacher, Sam Jones said: I can stand anything better than I can a hypocrite. The students at Princeton, I believe it was, played a joke on one of the professors. He was one of those old bugologists, and I reckon he had specimens of all the bugs in the world in his frames and boxes. The mischievous boys got the legs of one bug and the body of another and the head and wings of others, and put them together as if nature had so formed them, and then they laid it on the old professor's table and walked in, and asked him what kind of a bug that was on the table. The old professor looked down at the specimen on the table and said, "Gentlemen, that is a humbug."

We too, are humbugs, when we claim to be something we are not. When we are not real or genuine, when we proclaim something we are not, we are a hypocritical humbug. When we say we love the Lord and His Word, but don't read it or go to church to hear it preached, something is not jiving. As troubled astronauts would say in the past, "Houston, we have a problem!"

How do you listen to the preaching of God's Word? Instead of turning away your ears, you and I can have the attitude that the Berean Christians had.

Acts 17:11—These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.

They heard Paul with extremely receptive minds. They did not listen scornfully, raising their own opinions, objections, or foolish questions against his preaching. They wanted to hear; they wanted to believe; they were thankful they had a man of God to declare the Scriptures to them and received the Word of God with "readiness, eagerness, and zeal of mind." They searched the Word of God daily. This is how you grow spiritually. Learn the Word and put it into practice.

We have seen ten things in Proverbs that are abominations to the Lord.

K. A Froward or Perverted Heart

Proverbs 11:20—They that are of a froward heart are abomination to the Lord: but such as are upright in their way are his delight.

The word "froward" is from the Hebrew word ̀iqqesh {ik-kashe'} which means "twisted, crooked, distorted, or perverted." This word describes the wicked as having "twisted or distorted minds." Their thinking is consistently warped and focused on evil. In fact, people like this will take something that is wholesome or innocent and turn it into something perverted. Filthy words or stories will come from their lips.

The sons of Eli, Hophni and Phineas, were men that were perverted in their actions and thinking. They turned the service of the Lord into a brothel, sexually seducing the women that served at the entrance of the tabernacle. The problem here was the fact that they should not have been doing this in the first place. They did not know the Lord at all for they were wicked men... sons of Belial or the Devil. Their behavior was an abomination and also a spiritual stumbling block to the people.

1 Samuel 2:12—Now the sons of Eli were sons of Belial; they knew not the Lord.

1 Samuel 2:22—Now Eli was very old, and heard all that his sons did unto all Israel; and how they lay with the women that assembled at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation.

1 Samuel 2:24—Nay, my sons; for it is no good report that I hear: ye make the Lord's people to transgress.

L. The Fashion, Feature, or Character of the Wicked

Proverbs 15:9—The way of the wicked is an abomination unto the Lord: but he loveth him that followeth after righteousness.

What does Solomon mean by the phrase "way of the wicked?" The word "way" is from the Hebrew word derek {deh'-rek}. It not only means "the way or road," but also "the manner, habits, the course of life, or moral character of a person." The fashion or character of the wicked is an abomination to God. It is an abomination because their way is wicked, their character is corrupt, their habits are hellish and hurtful, and their course of life leaves God out of their affairs. Their course has their back toward the Lord and their ears closed to His voice. Zechariah described people like this.

Zechariah 7:12—Yea, they made their hearts as an adamant stone, lest they should hear the law, and the words which the Lord of hosts hath sent in his spirit by the former prophets: therefore came a great wrath from the Lord of hosts.

M. The Feelings, Fancy, and Fabrications of the Wicked

Proverbs 15:26—The thoughts of the wicked are an abomination to the Lord: but the words of the pure are pleasant words.

The sacrifices, the way, and the thoughts of the wicked are an abomination to the Lord. He hates them because He truly knows what they are, for He can read our minds.

Job 42:2—I know that thou canst do every thing, and that no thought can be withholden from thee.

Matthew 12:25—And Jesus knew their thoughts, and said unto them, Every kingdom divided against itself is brought to desolation; and every city or house divided against itself shall not stand:

With the Lord, there is no such thing as "private thoughts." We should pray with David that our words and the meditation of our heart would be acceptable in God's sight.

Psalm 19:14—Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in thy sight, O Lord, my strength, and my redeemer.

It is interesting to note that the word "intelligence" is derived from two words, inter and legere. The word inter meaning "between" and legere meaning "to choose." An intelligent person, therefore, is one who has learned to "choose between." He knows that good is better than evil, that confidence should supersede fear, that love is superior to hate, that gentleness is better than cruelty, that forbearance is better than intolerance, that compassion is greater than arrogance, and that truth has more virtue than ignorance. How is your thought life? Is it acceptable to the Lord or an abomination?

We have examined what is an abomination to God. Now we will focus our attention on what is an abomination to good men.


A. Foul Men that are Unjust

Proverbs 29:27a—An unjust man is an abomination to the just:....

The behavior of wicked men is not only an abomination to God, it is also loathsome to good and godly people. Solomon states that men who embrace injustice and wickedness are an abomination to those who are just and righteous. Those folks with character are irritated by those without character.

People of integrity and honesty are offended by dishonesty and deception. The hatred for the lifestyle of the wicked is a by-product of the conflicts in behavior, priorities, goals, and lifestyle between the righteous and the wicked. Here is a good question, "Do your actions, words, and attitudes offend and disgust godly people? Do you find yourself in constant conflicts with godly Christians?" If so, you might want to take a long look at your life and how you are living.

B. Filthy Speech and Behavior

Proverbs 8:7—For my mouth shall speak truth; and wickedness is an abomination to my lips.

Christians are to be a people of "truth." We are to be truthful in our behavior and words. The word "truth" is from the Hebrew word ʾemeth {eh'-meth} which not only means "truth" but also "faithfulness, sureness, dependability, reliability, and stability." Truth is like a pillar which promotes faithfulness, reliability and stability. In fact, the Hebrew root word for truth, aman, means "to support."

Because of the truth of God's Word, we have security and stability in our lives. He is our Rock! Why are millions of Christians faithful to the Lord in the face of opposition or persecution? Because they find unshakable strength and confidence from God's truth. They know that truth does not change in spite of the opposition and opinions of men that defy it. Truth is reliable and dependable because it is always true. Yesterday, two plus two equaled four. It is also true today and tomorrow. Why? It is truth. Love for the truth and hatred for wickedness calls forth the truth from the lips of those who refute wickedness.

We will note something else about the Hebrew word ʾemeth {eh'-meth}. It is formed from three Hebrew letters that happen to be the first letter, the aleph, the middle letter, the mem, and the last letter of the Hebrew alphabet, the tav. There are 27 letters in this alphabet if you include the final forms and 22 if you don't include them. The hidden message here is that something is true from A to Z. It is true all the time, from start to finish, including every point in the middle as well.

Proverbs 16:12—It is an abomination to kings to commit wickedness: for the throne is established by righteousness.

Criminal acts are abomination to kings. If a king is trying to have a righteous administration, he will detest any criminal acts which would undermine his authority and ability to rule. They represent God in their position, and therefore have greater responsibility. The throne or decisions made by his administration are stabilized by doing that which is right. It should be added that the verse may mean that it is an abomination to kings for their subjects to commit wickedness. Lawful, orderly government must be sustained by righteousness. Where moral standards are abandoned, anarchy prevails.

C. The Fractious Scorner

Proverbs 24:9—The thought of foolishness is sin: and the scorner is an abomination to men.

Good men detest those who mock morality, justice, and goodness. Sooner or later, people will rise up against the scorner. They will have had enough and their anger will no longer be contained. Let me ask, "Do you find yourself mocking or scoffing that which is good? Do you mock church, the Bible, God, your pastor, other Christians, or your parents?" Realize that such behavior and attitudes will lead to your eventual demise, shame, and irritation with good people that could help you if you would listen to them.

A farmer was paid a visit by one of his city relatives. Before dinner the farmer bowed his head and said grace. His sophisticated, scornful relative jeered, "This is old-fashioned. Nobody with an education prays at the table any more." The farmer admitted that the practice was old and even admitted that there were some on his own farm who did not pray before their meals. Justified, the snooty relative remarked, "So enlightenment is finally reaching the farm. Who are these wise ones that don't pray before they eat?" The farmer replied, "My pigs."

We have examined what are the abominations to God and to good men. We will now examine what are the abominations to men who are bad.


A. Forthright and Faithful Men

Proverbs 29:27b—....and he that is upright in the way is abomination to the wicked.

Wicked men reveal their lack of character and the true corruption in their hearts when they display or proclaim their hatred for those who are godly. The godliness of those who love God is a source of conviction to the wicked. Instead of repenting of their sins, they lash out in revenge and attack the righteous. Ahab and Jezebel despised Naboth; Saul despised David; the Persian presidents could not stand Daniel and Haman hated Mordecai. Church history has an abundance of examples of Christians that were hated and put to death because of their faith in Christ.

Beloved, in spite of the opposition you face, do your best to live a godly life and be a good ambassador for Christ. The wicked may not be paying much attention to your testimony, but others who are observing you when you are attacked are paying attention to see how you will respond.

When Robert Ingersoll, the notorious skeptic, was in his heyday, two college students went to hear him lecture. As they walked down the street after the lecture, one said to the other, "Well, I guess he knocked the props out from under Christianity, didn't he?" The other said, "No, I don't think he did. Ingersoll did not explain my mother's life, and until he can explain my mother's godly life I will stand by my mother's God."

B. Finishing or Fleeing from Sinful Living

Proverbs 13:19—The desire accomplished is sweet to the soul: but it is abomination to fools to depart from evil.

This is an amazing verse to me because it magnifies the stupidity and lack of common sense of those who are foolish. In fact, the word "fool" here means "stupid one." Solomon observed that fools hate the idea of leaving their sins. Why? They get their thrills and kicks from their sinfulness. This is why it is deplorable for them to forsake it. They cannot see the glorious reward they are missing, and they refuse to deny themselves any of the pleasures their lusts crave.

Fools deceive themselves into thinking that their sins are pleasing and profitable, when it reality their sins lead to eventual bondage and loss of happiness. Then they will be unable or find it difficult to depart from their evil lifestyle. Fools pursue sin greedily to their own destruction because they refuse to be teachable and do that which is right.

Isaiah 26:10—Let favour be shewed to the wicked, yet will he not learn righteousness: in the land of uprightness will he deal unjustly, and will not behold the majesty of the Lord.

If you have been so foolish as to embrace evil and fight against the Lord, then stop your stubbornness now and yield to His control. In so doing, each can become a great day for you.

"Two tough old mules said, 'Get this dope,

We're tied together with a piece of rope'.

Said one to the other, 'You come MY way,

While I take a nibble of that new-mown hay.'

'I won't,' said the other, 'You come with ME,

I have some hay over this way, you see.'

So they got nowhere, just pawed up the dirt,

Pulling each way, how that rope did hurt!

Then faced they about, those stubborn mules,

And said, 'We're acting just like human fools,

Let's pull together, I'll go your way,

Then you come with me, and we'll both eat hay'.

So they ate their hay, and liked it, too,

And said, 'Let's be comrades, good and true.'

As the sun went down they were heard to bray,

'Ah, this is the end of a perfect day.'"