Thursday, 31 October 2013


He layeth up sound wisdom for the righteous (Prov 2:7) 
Enemies Of The Lord: The Cruel 4: Proverbs 26:26-28
26) [Whose] hatred is covered by deceit, his wickedness shall be shewed before the [whole] congregation.
27) Whoso diggeth a pit shall fall therein: and he that rolleth a stone, it will return upon him.
28) A lying tongue hateth [those that are] afflicted by it; and a flattering mouth worketh ruin.

In this chapter, Solomon describes for us three of the greatest enemies of the Lord:
1.  The Fool (vs 1-12), One who does not apply the Word of God to their life.
2.  The Lazy (vs 13-16), One who is not diligent and industrious in their responsibilities
3.  The Cruel (vs 17-28), One who is angry, malicious and out of control
Before we being this final portion of our devotions from Proverbs 26 a short explanation is necessary.  The title of this final section of chapter 26 (vs 17-28) is “the cruel”.  Although this title cannot be found in our verses, it is a very fitting title for the enemy of the Lord that is being portrayed.  Note the different ways in which this individual is described…
1. vs 17 – one that “meddleth with strife”
2. vs 18 – “a mad man”
3. vs 19 – the “man that deceiveth his neighbor”
4. vs 20 – “talebearer”
5. vs 21 – a “contentious man”
6. vs 22 – “talebearer”
7. vs 23 – “burning lips” & “wicked heart”
8. vs 24 – he that “hateth” and “layeth up deceit”
9. vs 25 – there are “seven abominations in his heart”
10 vs 26 – whose “hatred is covered by deceit” & his “wickedness”
11 vs 27 – whoso “diggeth a pit” & “rolleth a stone”
12 vs 28 – a “lying tongue” & “a flattering mouth”
From these descriptions we can see the great harm cruel individuals can do to Christians and the work of the Lord.
We can see from the above descriptions that the basic principle is the harming of others motivated by hatred.   This is why I felt as if the title “cruel” is the best one to use to describe this individual.  As a matter of fact, one of the ideas behind the title “mad man” found in verse 18 is the idea of “cruelty out of control”.
So please keep in mind, as we study these verses over the next several devotionals, we are looking at different traits of one type of enemy of the work of the Lord. It is one who harms others based upon uncontrolled hatred in their heart… in other words it is one that is “cruel”.

We now conclude our study on “the cruel”… this entire study extends from vs 17 through vs 28 of this chapter.

26) [Whose] hatred is covered by deceit, his wickedness shall be shewed before the [whole] congregation.
1.  Whoever is overtaken by malice but conceals it with deception
2.  his unlawfulness is put on display before the entire assembly
A man who is filled with hatred, although he may try to conceal his true motives, his sinfulness will be put on display before those who are watching him.  This can take place either as they: observe his actions (which reveal his true intents); or, when the Lord intervenes in the situation and, through His control of earthly events, brings his true motives to view; or, when the Lord reveals the truth at the final judgment.  In any case, the principle is that those who have hatred in their heart cannot actually conceal it.  It will be brought out for other people to see eventually.

“For God shall bring every work into judgment, with every secret thing, whether [it be] good, or whether [it be] evil.”   (Ecclesiastes 12:14)

27) Whoso diggeth a pit shall fall therein: and he that rolleth a stone, it will return upon him.
1.  Whoever opens a ditch to trap others, will be caught in the trap he has laid.
2.  Whoever desires to harm another by rolling a boulder on them, will have it roll back upon himself.
Whenever an individual lays and executes plans to harm others, they are only preparing harm to fall upon themselves.
“He made a pit, and digged it, and is fallen into the ditch [which] he made.  His mischief shall return upon his own head, and his violent dealing shall come down upon his own pate.”   (Psalms 7:15-16)

28) A lying tongue hateth [those that are] afflicted by it; and a flattering mouth worketh ruin.
1.  A tongue that speaks deception are an enemy to those who are injured by it.
2.  A mouth that speaks smooth, pleasing, deceptive words brings harm to those who listen.
Not only does deception and hatred bring evil upon the wicked, but they can also harm those who are innocent and naive.  No one gains through deception performed from a heart of hatred…. but everyone involved can suffer loss.
“They speak vanity every one with his neighbour: [with] flattering lips [and] with a double heart do they speak.  The LORD shall cut off all flattering lips, [and] the tongue that speaketh proud things:  Who have said, With our tongue will we prevail; our lips [are] our own: who [is] lord over us?”   (Psalms 12:2-4)

In our study of the cruel, we have seen that he is:
1.  a person who desires to “stir up trouble” between two warring individuals.
2.  a person who with uncontrolled hatred that floods others with acts and words meant to destroy.
3.  a person who make the harming of others through deceit a contest that entertains and pleases them.
4.  In the absence of the cruel gossip there is peace and harmony.
5.  Quarreling and arguing continue when those who love to fight are present
6.  The lies of gossipers can be devastating, cause great pain and permanent wounds.
7.  a person who is full of hatred
8.  a person that uses deceptive speech to take his enemy off guard
9.  a person who is abhorrent in the eyes of the Lord.
10. a person lays plans and works to harm others will have evil come upon them.
11. when hateful deceitful speech is present harm falls upon both the speaker and the listener
If we were standing accused of cruelty in a court of law would there be enough evidence to convict us?
Or put another way, would there be others, who have watched our lifestyle, stand and testify that our life exhibited the attributes of those that are cruel?
By God’s grace NONE of these attributes would be found in our lives.  As a matter of fact, the existence of this type of hateful spirit within us calls into question our very salvation.
May we all possess Godly wisdom and live our lives for Him.
By God’s grace, let us all study these proverbs diligently, giving them the value that they deserve.
May the Lord bless us as we receive this sound wisdom and then “Think On These Things”.

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