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Spiritual Disgust: Abomination to Yahweh in the Book of Proverbs

Study notes  ▪ 2001
Tags: Spiritual life; God; Holiness; Sin; Proverbs; Towebah (Hebrew word)


The Meaning of Abomination

The Hebrew word towebah occurs 117 times in the Old Testament. The KJV almost always renders it “abomination.” The word occurs 20 times in Proverbs. It is found more frequently in only one book—Ezekiel.

The English word abomination refers to something that causes extreme disgust or hatred. In the Hebrew “the abomination may be of a physical, ritual or ethical nature and may be abhorred by God or man” (Harris 976-77). The word “denotes those persons, things, or practices that offend another’s sensibilities. Hence, that which is ‘abominable’ is relative to the character, values, or culture of an individual. One displays his own character or values by that which repulses him” (Waltke 1:13).

Wickedness

A wicked lifestyle

8:7 For my mouth shall speak truth; and wickedness is an abomination to my lips.

15:9 The way of the wicked is an abomination unto the LORD: but he loveth him that followeth after righteousness.

The thoughts of the wicked

6:16, 18 These six things doth the LORD hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto him . . . An heart that deviseth wicked imaginations, feet that be swift in running to mischief.

15:26 The thoughts of the wicked are an abomination to the LORD: but the words of the pure are pleasant words.

The religious efforts of the wicked

15:8 The sacrifice of the wicked is an abomination to the LORD: but the prayer of the upright is his delight.

21:27 The sacrifice of the wicked is abomination: how much more, when he bringeth it with a wicked mind?

28:9 He that turneth away his ear from hearing the law, even his prayer shall be abomination.

Forwardness to commit mischief

6:16, 18 These six things doth the LORD hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto him . . . An heart that deviseth wicked imaginations, feet that be swift in running to mischief.

The justification of the wicked

17:15 He that justifieth the wicked, and he that condemneth the just, even they both are abomination to the LORD.

Deceit

Deceitful speech

6:16-17, 19 These six things doth the LORD hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto him: A proud look, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood. . . . A false witness that speaketh lies, and he that soweth discord among brethren.

12:22 Lying lips are abomination to the LORD: but they that deal truly are his delight.

Inconsistent weights and measures

11:1 A false balance is abomination to the LORD: but a just weight is his delight.

20:10 Divers weights, and divers measures, both of them are alike abomination to the LORD.

20:23 Divers weights are an abomination unto the LORD; and a false balance is not good.

Perverseness

People who have turned aside

3:32 For the froward is abomination to the LORD: but his secret is with the righteous.

People with twisted, perverse hearts

11:20 They that are of a froward heart are abomination to the LORD: but such as are upright in their way are his delight.

Pride

A proud look

6:16-17 These six things doth the LORD hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto him: A proud look, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood.

A proud heart

16:5 Every one that is proud in heart is an abomination to the LORD: though hand join in hand, he shall not be unpunished.

Abuse of the Innocent

Hands that shed innocent blood

6:16-17 These six things doth the LORD hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto him: A proud look, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood.

People who condemn the just

17:15 He that justifieth the wicked, and he that condemneth the just, even they both are abomination to the LORD.

Promotion of Conflict

People who sow conflict

6:16, 19 These six things doth the LORD hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto him . . . A false witness that speaketh lies, and he that soweth discord among brethren.

Works Cited

Harris, R. Laird, ed. Theological Wordbook of the Old Testament. Vol. 2. Chicago: Moody, 1980.

Waltke, Bruce K. “Abomination.” The International Standard Bible Encyclopedia. Ed. Geoffrey W. Bromiley. 4 vols. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1979-88.


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Study notes (2 pages)   161k v. 3 Nov 6, 2011, 7:40 PM Greg Smith
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