They’re Shrewd in Their own Sight

Isaiah 5:18-19 ESV

“Woe to those who draw iniquity with cords of falsehood,
who draw sin as with cart ropes,
who say: ‘Let him be quick,
let him speed his work
that we may see it;
let the counsel of the Holy One of Israel draw near,
and let it come, that we may know it!’”

It isn’t just those who make no profession of faith in Jesus Christ who do these kinds of things, but a large number of professers of faith in Jesus, even pastors and Bible teachers, behave in this manner as a matter of habit, and deliberately, while defiantly disregarding God’s commands. So, this is widespread within the gatherings of the church among the congregants.

This is speaking largely of those who willfully deceive others, who trick them, who manipulate them, and who promote falsehood in order to catch the naïve and the trusting in their webs of deceit. They are those who plot evil on their beds and who scheme evil against others, especially against those who do not buy into their trickery and into their falsehoods.

The picture here is also of those who add sin to sin, whose sin keeps increasing in volume and in intensity. For those who are captivated by sin’s deceitfulness will never be fully satisfied, so they will have a continual thirst for more, taking it to the next level, and to the next, looking for that increased euphoric feeling or that emotional high they get from their sins.

In fact, they add one sin to another for the purpose of defying God and for the purpose of harming and hurting (injuring) others, even those they are supposed to love and care for. For they are not ignorant of God’s commands or of what God’s word teaches regarding his judgments, so it is like they are daring God to judge them, in a mocking kind of way, not believing he will.

Isaiah 5:20 ESV

“Woe to those who call evil good
and good evil,
who put darkness for light
and light for darkness,
who put bitter for sweet
and sweet for bitter!”

This is happening “in spades” (to a very high degree) within the institutional church which is marketing the gatherings of what is called “church” to the world. Since the people of the world are their target audience, they are patterning the gatherings of “the church” after the world in order to attract the world to their gatherings. And thus they are altering those gatherings to make them more attractive and inviting to human flesh.

But it isn’t just the gatherings they are altering, but they have also altered the gospel of our salvation by deleting the parts they don’t like and by cherry picking the Scriptures that they do like, and by teaching them out of context and twisting them to say what they do not say. And not just content with diluting the gospel but they are also on an all-out campaign to discredit the true gospel and to promote the false gospel as the true gospel.

And so they teach that we are not to repent of our sins or obey the Lord or honor him as Lord, for they call that works-based salvation. And they teach that we can believe in Jesus and have our sins forgiven (past, present, and future) and have heaven secured for us for when we die, but that nothing is required of them in the way of changed behavior. So, they call good evil and they call evil good.

And those who are buying into their diluted gospel message are following suit, and they have a way of twisting things to try to make their sins not be like sins. And so they find ways around calling their sins “sin” by calling them something else like, “I messed up.” Or they blame someone else for their sins, sometimes someone who wasn’t even a part of their lives when their sinful addiction began. They will not take responsibility for their sins.

Isaiah 5:21-23 ESV

“Woe to those who are wise in their own eyes,
and shrewd in their own sight!
Woe to those who are heroes at drinking wine,
and valiant men in mixing strong drink,
who acquit the guilty for a bribe,
and deprive the innocent of his right!”

Many people who are living in addiction to particular sins and who want to hold on to those sins, and who do not want to let them go, even if sometimes they says they do, often think they know better than God. Even though the Scriptures will teach against their sins and will talk of judgment for the addicted, they find ways around that to excuse away their sins.

They may say that they are calling on God for help, but while they are ignoring God and his commands, and they are charting their own course, and they are doing things their way, and not God’s way. And so they always end up with the same result, and with the same sin cycle, not only repeating the same sins over again, but with the same conversations, and the same excuses, and the same justifications, and the same arguments.

And this is because of pride, because they refuse to humble themselves before God and to surrender their lives over to him, for they are always the ones who have to be in control. They won’t let go of that control and let God have his way. And they refuse to be completely honest, even if occasionally they will confess some things. But lying is still their habit. And deception is still their game.

And with regard to drinking wine, people can be intoxicated with other things other than strong drink. They can be intoxicated with lust, with greed, with thirst for power, with control, with self-indulgence and self-gratification and self-pleasure, always looking for the next “fix” and the next “buzz,” and the next “high” that they get from their sinful practices.

They are those who will defend the guilty and who will accuse the innocent, who will honor those who do evil while they dishonor those who live righteously and in holiness. For pride is their necklace. And their thirst for sin is insatiable. Their idols will always come first unless they repent of their sins and they forsake their idols and they humble themselves and they start telling the truth and they forsake the lies.

But the word of God is truth, and no matter what they say or they do, God’s word remains on target. He will do what he says he will do. He will condemn those who call evil good and good evil, and who make lying and deceiving their practice, and who continually thirst for what will satisfy their fleshly desires, and who do not bow the knee to God in true repentance. So, turn your hearts to Jesus today and away from your idols.

[Lu 9:23-26; Jn 6:35-58; Jn 15:1-11; Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-17; Eph 4:17-24; 1 Pet 2:24; 1 Co 6:9-10, 19-20; 2 Co 5:10, 15; Tit 2:11-14; Jas 1:22-25; Gal 5:16-21; Eph 5:3-6; Gal 6:7-8; Rom 2:6-8; Matt 7:21-23; Heb 10:26-27; 1 Jn 1:5-9; 1 Jn 2:3-6; 1 Jn 3:4-10; Rom 12:1-2; Eph 2:8-10]

The Prayer

Written by David Foster, Carole Bayer Sager,
Alberto Testa and Tony Renis

I pray you’ll be our eyes
And watch us where we go
And help us to be wise
In times when we don’t know

Let this be our prayer
When we lose our way
Lead us to a place
Guide us with your grace
To a place where we’ll be safe.

I pray we’ll find your light
And hold it in our hearts
When the stars go out each night
Remind us where you are.

Let this be our prayer
When shadows fill our day
Lead us to a place
Guide us with your grace
To a place where we’ll be safe.

Caution: This link may contain ads
P.S. This is not an endorsement of the singers other than as musicians

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