The Truth of the Matter

Proverbs 14 NASB Select Verses

Truth vs. Lies

2 He who walks in his uprightness fears the Lord,
But he who is devious in his ways despises Him.
5 A trustworthy witness will not lie,
But a false witness utters lies.
22 Will they not go astray who devise evil?
But kindness and truth will be to those who devise good.
23 In all labor there is profit,
But mere talk leads only to poverty.
25 A truthful witness saves lives,
But he who utters lies is treacherous.

I hate lies! God hates lies! God hates haughty eyes, a lying tongue, 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 (Prov. 6:16-19), for He is a God of LOVE.

So, tell me the truth, even if the truth hurts, but say it in love, but don’t lie to me. Lies are never kind, no matter how you disguise them. “White lies” are still lies. Don’t act like you like me to my face but then stab me in the back when I am not looking. And, then don’t call it being “polite” or “nice.” And, don’t say you were trying to spare my feelings, either. For, it is not nice to lie to people, not ever! You are thinking only of you when you lie to others, for you want them to like you, and to think well of you.

We live in a society, though, even within the church of today, where lies are commonly practiced, even among pastors of churches, for many of them are even being trained to lie to their people. It is called “marketing.” I have seen this over and over again, across church denominations. It is all part of “church growth” schemes and tricks and manipulations, which are now commonly practiced into today’s “churches” (businesses of men).

Don’t pretend to be one thing while you practice another, either. That is called hypocrisy, and it is a BIG FAT LIE! Don’t try to appear spiritual in front of other people while you hide your secret sins inside, hoping no one knows, and no one sees. But, God knows, and He sees, and it matters to Him a whole lot, even though you might think it doesn’t. His grace does not turn a blind eye to your sinful practices (See: Tit. 2:11-14; Gal. 5:19-21).

So, be a person of integrity. Tell the truth. Don’t be nasty or hateful, and don’t be crude or cruel. You don’t have to say everything you think or feel. But, don’t lie. Be a truth teller. Especially with your spouse and with God, don’t try to hide the truth or devise cover-ups for your sins. A discerning spouse will know when you are lying to him or to her. And, that breaks fellowship, and it destroys trust. So, be one who practices the truth.

Wisdom vs. Foolishness

6 A scoffer seeks wisdom and finds none,
But knowledge is easy to one who has understanding.
8 The wisdom of the sensible is to understand his way,
But the foolishness of fools is deceit.
9 Fools mock at sin,
But among the upright there is good will.
15 The naive believes everything,
But the sensible man considers his steps.
16 A wise man is cautious and turns away from evil,
But a fool is arrogant and careless.
18 The naive inherit foolishness,
But the sensible are crowned with knowledge.
29 He who is slow to anger has great understanding,
But he who is quick-tempered exalts folly.

There are many who scoff (mock, deride) what they don’t understand or what they are unwilling to accept. Scoffers may seek wisdom from God, but will not find it, because they are not willing to yield their lives over to God. They are not willing to do what the Lord says. They pick and choose what they are willing to obey, while they reject what doesn’t fit into their own plans. They scoff, because they don’t want to give up their sins.

Then, there are the naïve. I used to be one of those, and I still have to be careful that I am not too trusting. We can’t go around with blinders on. We have to have eyes to see and ears to hear, and we have to be sensitive to the voice of the Holy Spirit so he can prompt us when something we are seeing or hearing or reading is a lie. We have to stop believing politicians, news casters, and preachers, at face value, and we need discernment and prayer to inquire of the Lord as to the truth of something.

We also need to not be too quick to jump to conclusions, whether positive or negative. We can jump on anyone’s “bandwagon” too soon and then find out we have truly been “taken for a ride.” Or, we can “jump down someone’s throat” too soon, too, without knowledge, and have to “eat our words.” So, we need to always proceed with caution in whatever we do, and pray without ceasing, inquiring of the Lord before we take action. For, once we say it, or once we do it, it is really hard to take it back, and we can do much damage to others and to ourselves needlessly, because we didn’t think.

Life and Death

11 The house of the wicked will be destroyed,
But the tent of the upright will flourish.
12 There is a way which seems right to a man,
But its end is the way of death.
14 The backslider in heart will have his fill of his own ways,
But a good man will be satisfied with his.
26 In the fear of the Lord there is strong confidence,
And his children will have refuge.
27 The fear of the Lord is a fountain of life,
That one may avoid the snares of death.
32 The wicked is thrust down by his wrongdoing,
But the righteous has a refuge when he dies.
34 Righteousness exalts a nation,
But sin is a disgrace to any people.

If you are one who practices sin, i.e. you habitually sin, and although you may confess it, you don’t truly repent, then you are among the wicked. Even if you prayed a sinner’s prayer one day in your life, and even if you profess to believe in Jesus Christ, if you walk in (live in) sin, the Bible says you don’t know God, you don’t love God, and you don’t have eternal life with God.

[See: Lu. 9:23-25; Rom. 6:1-23; Rom. 8:1-17; Eph. 4:17-24; Gal. 5:19-21; Gal. 6:7-8; Jn. 14:23-24; 1 Jn. 1:5-9; 1 Jn. 2:3-6; 1 Jn. 5:3; etc.]

But, this is not to say that we will never sin (See: 1 Jn. 2:1-2). But, sin should no longer be master of our lives. We should no longer be under its control, but we should be under the Lordship of Christ and the control of the Holy Spirit. We should no longer be those who make sin our daily practice, but we should be those who make righteousness our practice.

And, this is not optional. For, our salvation is not just to forgive us our sins and to give us eternal life with God, but its purpose is to put sin to death in our lives so that we can live in Christ’s righteousness (See: 1 Pet. 2:24). For, this is why Jesus died.

So, if we want forgiveness of sins and eternal life with God, we must walk, not according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit, and by the Spirit be putting to death the deeds of the flesh (Rom. 8:1-17; Eph. 4:17-24).

Then, we will have the light of Christ in our lives, and his joy and peace, and victory over darkness, and release from fear, and comfort and help in times of trouble. For, our Lord will watch over us, and he will give us all we need to endure whatever life brings our way, because we trust in Him, and not in our own flesh.

Jesus, I My Cross Have Taken

Hymn lyrics by Henry F. Lyte, 1833
Music attr. to Mozart, 1831/ Arr. Hubert P. Main, 1872

Jesus, I my cross have taken, all to leave and follow Thee;
Destitute, despised, forsaken, Thou from hence my all shall be.
Perish every fond ambition, all I’ve sought or hoped or known;
Yet how rich is my condition! God and heav’n are still mine own.

Let the world despise and leave me, they have left my Savior, too;
Human hearts and looks deceive me; Thou art not, like them, untrue.
And while Thou shalt smile upon me, God of wisdom, love and might,
Foes may hate and friends disown me, show Thy face and all is bright.

Go, then, earthly fame and treasure! Come, disaster, scorn and pain!
In Thy service pain is pleasure; with Thy favor, loss is gain.
I have called Thee, “Abba, Father”; I have set my heart on Thee:
Storms may howl, and clouds may gather, all must work for good to me.

Man may trouble and distress me, ’twill but drive me to Thy breast;
Life with trials hard may press me; heav’n will bring me sweeter rest.
Oh, ’tis not in grief to harm me, while Thy love is left to me;
Oh, ’twere not in joy to charm me, were that joy unmixed with Thee.

Haste then on from grace to glory, armed by faith, and winged by prayer,
Heav’n’s eternal day’s before thee, God’s own hand shall guide thee there.
Soon shall close thy earthly mission, swift shall pass thy pilgrim days;
Hope soon change to glad fruition, faith to sight, and prayer to praise.

*Copyright status is Public Domain

Tuesday, July 3, 2018 – Thank You, Jesus! Glory to God!! Amen!!

 

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