Our darkened hearts

Military special forces, weapons, operations and missions are not new words. They are as old as war itself. One person in history who is highly regarded for his inventiveness not only in mathematics but also military is Archimedes of Syracuse. His conceptions kept Romans at bay, for about two years, although they were very powerful than Syracuse.

As for missions, Ulysses of Ancient Greece was a force to reckon with. This is according to Iliad, Homer’s epic poems.

The Acheans (Greeks) were at war with the city of Troy, and they could not penetrate the Trojans defences for ten years. Ulysses came up with a splendid idea that startled the Trojans and settled a decade-old siege. The siege was punctuated with skirmishes and battles. The idea was this, the Acheans made a large wooden horse, placed their special forces within, and left it at Troy’s gates. They then retreated tactically. The Trojans thought the Greeks were war-weary and had left for good. They then pulled the horse into their city after a heated debate whether to do so or not. When the night came, the horse opened and a group of warriors climbed out to destroy Troy from within.

Isn’t it surprising that we can carry, nurture, harbour and cherish stuff that will destroy us one day!

What God hates

The Book of Proverbs 6:16-19 lists seven things that God hates as follows.

  1. Arrogant eyes
  2. A tongue that lies
  3. Hands that murder the innocent
  4. A heart that hatches evil plots
  5. Feet that race down a wicked track
  6. A mouth that lies under oath
  7. A troublemaker in the family.

An analysis of these seven things reveals that they are as a result of motives within our iniquitous hearts. The writer of Proverbs is pointing the finger at our hearts.

Arrogance

Arrogance resides in the deepest chambers of our hearts. Humility and arrogance are mutually exclusive events. This is the idea that I am better than others. It is an exaggerated sense of self-importance. It is the public display of purported superiority.

It aims at putting others down. We always forget the simple and obvious fact that we cannot get better by making others worse. We cannot move forward by pulling others backwards. We cannot grow tall by cutting others down. It does not work that way. Arrogance was the original sin of Satan, who wanted to be the Most High (Isaiah 14:13-14).

“People don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care.” Theodore Roosevelt.

Lies

Lies stem from our hearts. They destroy families, communities and even nations. We often lie to achieve our selfish ends. Lies begin with ‘Me, I and Myself’. It is about me and not us.

It pays to crosscheck statements for facts before passing them over. Lies perpetuated over and over again may finally sound truthful but the fact is that they are lies still. Think about the harm that will be caused by lies!

Lies are disseminated very fast, by us, but corrective truth is not propagated as fast as such. Satan is the high priest of lies (John 8:44).

“A lie gets halfway around the world before the truth has a chance to get its pants on.” Winston Churchill.

Murder

In most of the cases, murder does not just occur from blues. People entertain murderous thoughts in their hearts before they execute them. We murder for different reasons. Perhaps because of positions, money and power.

Whatever the reason, it should always click in our minds that God hates murder. It is ironical that even those who murder at one point they also die.

When you kill one person, you have destroyed generations and generations, for there are generations of people in a single person – unborn children; unborn grandchildren; unborn great-grandchildren. And that is why God hates murder. Satan was a murderer from the beginning, and we should not become his accomplices (John 8:44)

“It costs a lot more than your life. To murder innocent people? It costs everything you are.” Suzzane Collins.

Evil plots

God also hates the heart that hatches evil plots. It is the art and science of perpetually scheming how we can accomplish evil. How do I destroy him? How do I make her look lesser? How can I take advantage of him? How can I make her fall? An evil heart is full of evil questions and an equal measure of evil answers. It is the heart of Satan. Satan is always designing strategies to keep us under. We can counter him by deciding to abandon our evil plots.

“An evil plan does mischief to the planner.” Hesiod.

Feet that run to evil

Satan moves to and fro looking for someone to devour (Job 1:7; 1st Peter 5:8). It is the same case with us human beings. We cannot settle in one place. Our feet are itching to go commit evil. Our feet are swift at running to commit evil than good. Isn’t ironical that we move faster to go shed blood than spreading the Gospel? We love moving around passing gossip, backstabbing, and stealing.

Our feet should only move quicker in spreading the gospel. Only the Kings’ business should make us travel in haste (Isaiah 52:7; 1st Samuel 21:8).

Promise breaker

Then there are those once who find keeping promises and delivering on them a pretty hard row to hoe. Not that they somehow found it hard to keep them, but they entered the agreement fully aware that they will at one point lead you down the garden path. Satan is the father of lies and he does not give true promises. He promised Adam and Eve that their conditions will change by eating the forbidden fruit. He promised Jesus that he would give him the entire world if he worshipped him. Satan can make a very good politician.

However, God fulfils his vows. He does not give empty promises. He does not proclaim hollow assurances.

Causing divisions

Satan brought discord among the host of Heaven by wanting to topple God. He stirred strife in and God had to send him packing. He is the father of disunity in families, communities and nations. We cannot allow ourselves to be his copycats. We cannot afford the price of dividing our families, communities and nations. The consequences of dividing a family, a community or a nation can be devastating.

Always do to others what you would want to be done to you. This is the golden rule given by Jesus (Matthew 7:12.).

Questions to ponder over

  1. How would you feel if you were lied to?
  2. How would you feel if the closest person was murdered?
  3. How would you feel if you were treated in arrogance?
  4. How would you feel if you knew someone was plotting your downfall?
  5. How would you feel if someone took advantage of your naïveté or innocence to fool you?
  6. How would you feel if somebody decided to divide your family, community, and nation?

 “So, in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for these sums up the Law and the Prophets.” Jesus of Nazareth.

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