Chapter 4:23 says, "Keep thy heart with all diligence, for out of it are the issues of life." The heart is the master control of life. A wrong heart always produces a wrong life. To allow sin into the heart is to pollute the entire life. In this chapter, Solomon warns us to guard our lips (verse 24); yet Luke 6:45 tells us the lips and tongue are controlled by the heart. A froward mouth is a proud mouth, a mouth that speaks scornfully and arrogantly. A Christian's words must never be arrogant; they must always be spoken in love (Ephesians 4:15).

In chapter 5 we see folly offering men condemnation. Wherever God offers His gracious invitation, Satan is there with an alluring offer of his own. He has a counterfeit for everything God has to offer. With the description of the wicked woman in chapter 5 we can see how Satan tries to make sin appear beautiful. But verse 5 tells us that her feet go down to death and her steps take hold on hell. God warns us not to even come near her door (verses 7 and 8). Sin has always been costly. It can cause you to lose your reputation (verse 9), your possessions (verse 10), your health (verse 11), and your very life (verses 22 and 23). The cords of sin bind man, slowly but surely, until one day he discovers that he has no power within himself; and he cannot escape the grips of Satan and sin.

Chapter 6:16-19 says, "These six things doth the Lord hate: yea, seven are abomination unto him: A proud look, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood. An heart that deviseth wicked imaginations, feet that be swift in running to mischief, A false witness that speaketh and he that soweth discord among brethren." While it is true that we serve a God of love, on occasion God is described as hating certain characteristics found in men. Few Christians, of course, are guilty of bloody hands, a wicked heart, and other crimes mentioned here. But the sin of sowing discord among the brethren is often found in Bible-believing churches. Only eternity will reveal the number of churches that have been torn apart because of it. It is a sad but true fact that more churches have suffered shipwreck due to disposition than to position. Troubles arise in most churches, not because of some incorrect theological position, but because of the deadly tongue disposition of some gossipy man or woman. Let us never forget that God hates this attitude; for, when we speak against the body of Christ, we also grieve the Holy Spirit of God who dwells within us.

Index of Daily Devotions