The Coffee Shop Series is about getting to know God as if we were sitting with our crush in a coffee shop. We could spend the rest of our lives seeking Him and trying to get to know Him and not even scratch the surface of an infinite God. What I find so beautiful is that even though He’s unfathomable, His values are so clear and straightforward that even a child could understand them. He isn’t exclusive and doesn’t make the way to find Him hard. I began the series with what God hates because His goodness, kindness, and justice have another side, the things He hates, and when we know this and why He hates them, we love Him even more. This week is about the “heart that creates wicked plans and feet that run swiftly to evil.” Notice that God relegates the hate to the actions of humans, but not us. He loves us.
These six things the Lord hates;
Indeed, seven are repulsive to Him:
A heart that creates wicked plans,Provers 6:14-15
Feet that run swiftly to evil,
Devising and Running
I find the progression in verses 14-15 interesting. The things we do or say come from the outflow of our hearts. Proverbs 4:23 tells us to guard our hearts diligently because everything we do flows from our hearts. When a person thinks wicked, mean, bitter, or perverse thoughts, those actions are soon to follow. Anyone who performs those actions produces hurt, be it someone else or themselves. How do feet run swiftly toward evil? God doesn’t mean someone’s feet as much as it discusses a broader subject: our actions. We become proficient at anything we do often. If we are accustomed to devising and doing evil, the time it takes to get from point “a” to “b” gets shorter each time. We hurt others or ourselves in record time when we allow ourselves to think about wicked things, plan evil schemes, and put aside other things to do what’s evil. God isn’t an egomaniac who is threatened when we don’t do what He says exactly the way He says it. Then why does He hate evil so much?
Above all else, guard your heart,Proverbs 4:23
for everything you do flows from it.”
God Does Not Hate Us
In all of the things that hate and repulse God, He talks about inanimate objects that are animated by sinful behavior. He never says He hates us; it’s impossible for Him to hate us. He gave everything for us to be free from the powerful effects of sin on others and ourselves. We live in a world of the wicked making of generations of humans. This evil in the world is the cause of every pain, fear, sickness, anxiety, and horror in our lives. God designed a beautiful Eden where we could walk and talk with Him. Our expulsion from the garden broke his heart. He loves us but hates the evil that destroys us and separates us from Him.
God Feels Our Pain
Every parent hates to see their children hurt and would opt to take the pain in their place. I’ve visited moms in children’s hospitals, helplessly walking through childhood cancer with their precious, innocent kids. Those mamas were willing to trade places with their children if they could. As these parents have such deep compassion for their kids, God has even more for us when we are affected by the cancer horrors of this sinful world. He also has compassion for our failings and forgives our sins through the sacrifice of Jesus. He chose to take our place, take our punishment so that we could be forgiven and have that second chance to live with Him forever. When we think about Him and what He hates, let us remember that every part of that hate is rooted in His love for us and our fellow humans.
24 He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, that we might die to sin and live to righteousness. By his wounds you have been healed.1 Peter 2:24