“Unequal weights and unequal measures are both alike an abomination to the Lord.” (Proverbs 20:10, ESV)
Dishonesty comes many different ways. Placing more weight upon our own works and words and character than is right, or measuring others with a less than objective eye. Either one is an abomination. How precious is our Savior who never deals with us in this fashion.
“Even a child makes himself known by his acts, by whether his conduct is pure and upright.” (Proverbs 20:11, ESV)
One of the joys of being a grandparent, is getting reacquainted with what being young is like. My wife has been quick to remind me of how transparent little ones are with their feelings. You see it on their faces instantly with no filtering. If they like it – joy is unmistakable. If they don’t, disappointment or dislike are equally immediately visible. They act on it in a moment – not trying to mask the way we adults have learned so well. Christ never hides either His pleasure or displeasure. He is open and transparent with us in His Word at all times. He is Truth.
Secondly, people can SAY anything: It is what we DO which is the measure of who we are. Professions of love, loyalty, willingness to serve etc., are only as weighty as the air needed to express them. Loving, remaining loyal, serving – these are the things signified by the words. Without them, the words are worthless. Worse – they promise what they do not deliver – they lie.
How grateful I am that “God so loved the world”, culminated in “that He gave His only Son”. The mere sentiment of love, as real as it may be, saves no one – even when it is God who loves. It is love acting that sends Jesus to the Cross. And love responding that does not merely assent to the facts – but believes, and is saved.
So too with repentance. To repent is more than mere remorse, though it is certainly no less. One repents when the desire is changed. When the opinion that the sin indulged in can no longer be justified on any basis. When the sinful thing we desire is seen as what we want freedom from, instead of wishing we were free to do it. When every fall is identified as leaving the path toward Heaven, rather than trying to take a path other than holiness, and still imagining we can get there.
Do not tell me you love me – love me.
Do not say “I repent” – walk the other way.
Do not say “I believe” – trust Him, and cast yourself fully on His promises in Christ.
Anything else – is faithless, powerless, human religion.
“The hearing ear and the seeing eye, the Lord has made them both.” (Proverbs 20:12, ESV)
So use them both! One Wag said that God gave us two ears and only one mouth because we ought to listen twice as much as we speak.” I don’t know that that is EXACTLY what God had in mind when He designed us that way, but He DID give us ears with which to hear, and eyes with which to see.
If it is true (and it is) as Scripture records that “out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks” (Luke 6:45) then a connection here is unavoidable. Isn’t is obvious that the reason why our mouths are so filled with vitriol, complaint, bitterness, backbiting, dishonesty, doubt and woe – is because we have our eyes and ears feeding our hearts and minds more of self and the world than the beauties and wonders of God? So as our technologically oriented friends would tell us, it is a case of “garbage in, garbage out.”
Now it seems all too evident, that the Writer of our Proverb here is after us to consider something most wonderful. That we have been given faculties uniquely designed by God, to fill us with wonder, joy, admiration, awe, beauty, truth and transcendence. In other words dear Saint, your eyes have been set in your head so that you may bear witness to the wonders of God. What a glorious gift!
To each of us, has been given the capacity to behold God in the most amazing display of His creativity and wonder. Have you looked up at the sky lately and had your breath taken away by the blue expanse? Have you glanced at some mountains, a garden of flowers, stand of trees, the ocean or some other great body of water and marveled at what He has wrought? Step outside this very evening and drink in the limitless universe spread out before you in that velvet, star-studded canopy we call “space” and see the hand of God placing each one in their place. What power! What majesty! What genius! God has made your eyes – are you seeing Him?
Then again, this Lord’s Day, as you enter the holy duty and privilege of worship, do your ears hear the lofty descriptions of His attributes and goodness and grace as the Body of Christ lifts His praises on high in song and prayer and the Word read and preached and taught? Listen to that little baby squeal with delight when tossed by her father. The chorus of praise that makes you hear of Christ’s atoning death again. The staid, calm assurance of saints whispering their needs into the ears of their Heavenly Father. God has made your ears – are you hearing Him?
I pray it is so.