What God Hates
"Six things the Lord hates; in fact, seven are detestable to Him: arrogant eyes, a lying tongue, hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that plots wicked schemes, feet eager to run to evil, a lying witness who gives false testimony, and one who stirs up trouble among brothers." -Proverbs 6:16-19
What enters your mind as you read the verses above, knowing that God hates the behaviors listed there? Do you find yourself thinking of times, perhaps even recently, when you have done something that God abhors? It’s interesting (and convicting) that the Lord puts shedding innocent blood and spreading strife among brothers in the same list. To the world, shedding innocent blood is certainly considered much worse than creating conflict. But just what does it mean to stir up “trouble among brothers”?
“Strife” can be defined as “a bitter, sometimes violent conflict or dissension; an act of contention; exertion or contention for superiority.” On a sports team, this could take many forms. It could be a situation in which you turn one of your teammates against another player so that you’ll end up on top. Even if the argument or hard feelings only exist between you and the other person, everyone on your team feels the tension, and that leads to strife.
Consider how you’re treating your teammates and the other people in your life. If you’re creating strife, ask the Lord for wisdom. Ask Him to help you behave differently and then act on the guidance He gives you. Also, talk to an adult whom you respect and who treats people with the respect and kindness you want to exhibit.
1. Are you involved in any kind of strife on your team?
2. Are you the one creating this strife?
3. How can you mend the situation based on the principles that God teaches us in the Bible?
Matthew 5:21-24; 1 Thessalonians 4:1-11
Father, as I read Proverbs 6:16-19, I am reminded that many of my actions are abhorred by You. I am guilty of manipulating my teammates and friends to get what I want. Please forgive me and show me the way to correct these actions. Cause them to be as detestable to me as they are to You. I pray all this in Your name, amen.