The eyes of the LORD are in every place, keeping watch on the evil and the good. Watching a detective story on TV, I am amazed at how much can be learned by them replaying the camera records taken along the way their suspects have travelled. We don’t like the thought of people spying on us but it happens. Some one somewhere knows a lot about me by looking up the phone calls which I make. My phone will often tell me how long it will take me to get somewhere even though I have put no facts in as to where I’m going. It knows that at about what time on a Saturday morning I go to Bunnings or at what time on a Sunday morning I go to church! I would much rather God knew about me than the owner of Apple. God is good. On the other hand it is a very sobering thought as there is one encounter coming which none of us can side-step.
The sacrifice of the wicked is an abomination to the LORD, but the prayer of the upright is acceptable to him. A sacrifice isn’t necessarily a good thing. God can see the heart of the person offering the sacrifice and He is not fooled. You may have heard the story that Jesus told about a self-righteous man and a sinner who went into the temple to pray. Because of his sincerity and humility it was the rotter who went away forgiven. The prayer of the self-righteous man never even got through the ceiling! Jesus said that really the man was only talking to himself!
Sheol and Abaddon lie open before the LORD; how much more the hearts of the children of man! ‘Sheol’ is the place of the dead and ‘Abaddon’ means ‘doom’ in Hebrew. This really connects to the first couplet discussed above. If we think about it the previous one is talking about the here and now; this couplet deals with what we face in the future. When we think about future judgement of our words and actions it’s very sobering and a bit frightening. Fortunately for us the Bible which speaks of these sobering things also tells us the Good News (the gospel) of the forgiveness which awaits those who come to God through His prescribed ‘Way’. Do you know what the gospel is? If not, look it up. Or gradually when I am looking through and commenting on the book of Luke it is high-lighted. In a very quick summary God’s Way is Jesus!
Prayer: If you know all about me, God, will you show me Your Way, please.
A soft answer turns away wrath,
but a harsh word stirs up anger.
The tongue of the wise commends knowledge,
but the mouths of fools pour out folly.
The eyes of the LORD are in every place,
keeping watch on the evil and the good.
A gentle tongue is a tree of life,
but perverseness in it breaks the spirit.
A fool despises his father’s instruction,
but whoever heeds reproof is prudent.
In the house of the righteous there is much treasure,
but trouble befalls the income of the wicked.
The lips of the wise spread knowledge;
not so the hearts of fools.
The sacrifice of the wicked is an abomination to the LORD,
but the prayer of the upright is acceptable to him.
The way of the wicked is an abomination to the LORD,
but he loves him who pursues righteousness.
There is severe discipline for him who forsakes the way;
whoever hates reproof will die.
Sheol and Abaddon lie open before the LORD;
how much more the hearts of the children of man!
A scoffer does not like to be reproved;
he will not go to the wise.
A glad heart makes a cheerful face,
but by sorrow of heart the spirit is crushed.
The heart of him who has understanding seeks knowledge,
but the mouths of fools feed on folly.