“And He said unto them, Ye are they which justify yourselves before men; but God knoweth your hearts: for that which is highly esteemed among men is abomination in the sight of God.” Luke 16:15
When it is discussed what is pleasing in the sight of God and what is not pleasing, the subject is generally centered on sin; what is sin and what is not sin. Very seldom, if ever, does the discussion get around to what is an abomination unto the Lord. Most believe these two words are interchangeable. But with a little word study we find there is much difference between the word sin and the word abomination.
The Greek word for sin is HARMATRIA or HARMARTANO. The meaning is “to be without a share in; to miss the mark; to err, be mistaken; to miss or wander from the path of uprightness and honour, to do or go wrong; to wander from the law of God, and to violate God’s law”.
The Hebrew word for sin is CHATA and means “to miss the way, to err, to miss the mark, to wander from the way, to become unclean”. Another Hebrew word used for sin is PESHA and means “transgression and rebellion”. It refers to those who rebel against God’s intended way in their lives.
As our understanding increases in God’s Word, we know that God has an intended purpose for each life, and His purpose was instilled in each person’s life from before the foundation of the earth. Whether that person has an understanding of that purpose or not, God has His intended purpose to be accomplished in every life.
As we begin to understand the meaning of sin, those who are dwelling in HARMATRIA (sin) have fallen from the grace and mercy of God, and they are without a share in that they have missed the mark of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus, Philippians 3:14. They walk in error, and have wandered from the path of the upright, and have violated God’s law.
When law is mentioned, Moses’ law automatically comes to mind. But, as we begin to more fully understand the term “God’s law”, we discover that it is referring to the whole Word of God, not just the first five books of the Bible. When we are walking in HARMATRIA (sin), we are on the wrong path to enter in at the strait gate and we are missing God’s intended purpose for our lives.
Paul reveals that all have sinned (HARMATRIA) and come short of the glory of God, Romans 3:23. When God is our target and HARMATRIA enters into our lives, it alters our paths, we come up short of the target and we miss the mark. We are walking in error and we have wandered from the paths of the upright. When Paul wrote all have sinned, ALL means ALL. None have entered into God’s glory. But God is raising up a people who are dealing with the sin nature and will enter into His glory.
As we consider the word for abomination in the New Testament, it is the Greek word BDELUSSO or BDELUGMA and means “to abhor, a foul thing, a detestable thing, to stink, smell bad, odious, wickedness, and to turn one’s self away from on account of the stench”. In the Old Testament there is more than one word used for abomination. The main word used is TOWEBAH and means “a disgusting thing, a thing of wickedness”.
As the scriptures relate the words of Jesus, those things which are highly esteemed among men are an abomination in the sight of God, Luke 16:15. What is highly esteemed among men is a foul thing in the sight of God. To put it plainly, those things that are highly esteemed among men are a stink in God’s nostrils. He will turn His face from that stink because He abhors and detests it.
Jesus was speaking of those who justify themselves before men, but God knows their hearts, Luke 16:15. These are those who, being ignorant of God’s righteousness, have gone about to establish their own righteousness, and have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God, Romans 10:3. This is an abomination in the sight of God.
Jesus was not speaking of the worldly people. He expects them to do such things. But He was speaking of those who are called by His name, the Christ-ones in the earth, those whom He has purchased with His blood, those who have been anointed with His Spirit, those who are supposed to know His voice; His sheep, who are not following another shepherd. These are those who have justified what they want to do in the sight of men, using the name of Christ. These people are a stink in God’s nostrils.
By comparing what the Word says are abominations unto God with what is acceptable in the society in which we live, we can understand why God will bring judgment upon the earth. When we consider what is allowed in the churches that God plainly states are abominations in His sight, we can understand why judgment must begin at the house of God.
Sexual perversion is an abomination in the sight of God. There are many forms of sexual perversion and mankind is involved in all of them. Most, if not all, are found in the church. God spoke to Moses,
“Thou shalt not lie with mankind, as with womankind: it is abomination.” Leviticus 18:22
Homosexuality and lesbianism are abominations in the sight of God, a stink in His nostrils, that He will turn His face away from. Many will say, “That is part of the old, Mosaic law, and we are not under the law.” Paul addressed this in his letter to the Romans,
“Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in His sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin.” Romans 3:20
We are not justified by the law. But it is by and through the law that God has given us the knowledge of what is acceptable and unacceptable in His sight. We can hit the mark that God has set for our lives, or we can miss that mark, coming up short of what God has intended for us.
So when God states in His law that sexual perversion is an abomination in His sight in the Old Testament, then sexual perversion is also an abomination in His sight in the New Testament, and is still an abomination in His sight today. There was a punishment for this abomination.
“If a man also lie with mankind, as he lieth with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination: they shall surely be put to death; their blood shall be upon them.” Leviticus 20:13
Those who had committed this abomination were to be put to death, and their blood was to be upon them. Israel was commanded to take these harsh steps to control the spread of such activities in their midst so their promise land would not be defiled.
God gave Israel the land of Canaan. Canaan was the son of Ham. Canaan begat the Jebusites, the Amorites, the Girgasites, the Hivites, the Arkites, the Sinites, the Arvadites, the Zemarites and the Hamathites, Genesis 10:15-18. These were the people who occupied the land of Canaan when God gave it to Israel. Those dwelling in Israel at this time were the descendants of Ham. The Israelites, on the other hand, were from the descendants of Shem, Ham’s brother. God commanded Israel to destroy everyone of the Canaanites, to make no covenants with them, not to marry their sons or their daughters, nor to give their sons or daughters in marriage to these heathen, and to destroy all their gods. These nations were involved in idol worship and sexual perversion. They were devoid of any relationship with the true and living God.
“Ye shall therefore keep My statutes and My judgments, and shall not commit any of these abominations; neither any of your own nation, nor any stranger that sojourneth among you: (For all these abominations have the men of the land done, which were before you, and the land is defiled.) Leviticus 18:26-27
Because of these abominations, God gave the lands of the Canaanites to Israel, Deuteronomy 18:12. Sexual perversion was one of the main abominations the Canaanites committed before God when Israel occupied the land. Almost immediately Israel began to take on the abominations of the Canaanites because they refused to cast out the Canaanites as God had commanded them.
There are many forms of sexual perversion. One of the commandments God gave Israel before they entered into their promise land was,
“Neither shall he multiply wives to himself, that his heart turn not away: neither shall he greatly multiply to himself silver and gold.” Deuteronomy 17:17
When Solomon became king he married seven hundred wives, princesses and three hundred concubines: and his wives turned away his heart,” I Kings 11:3. Solomon typifies a form of sexual perversion that is prevalent today. It is called “machoism”, desiring every woman or every man that one sees. Many believe they are God’s gift to women, and today, women believe they are to service every man. This is an abomination unto God. Paul wrote to the church at Corinth:
“Avoid fornication, let every man have his own wife, and let every woman have her own husband.” I Corinthians 7:2
God has a husband for every woman and a wife for every man. But Israel followed the traditions of the heathen and married more than one wife.
After Solomon’s death, Rehoboam’s son was made king. It is recorded,
“And Judah did evil in the sight of the Lord, and they provoked Him to jealousy with their sins which they had committed, above all that their fathers had done. For they also built them high places, and images, and groves, on every high hill, and under every green tree. And there were also sodomites in the land: and they did according to all the abominations of the nations which the Lord cast out before the children of Israel.” I Kings 14:22-24
Israel had sodomites in their land. Today we do not use the word sodomite because it is offensive to those who practice this abomination. They are referred to as homosexuals and lesbians; but more preferably, gays. This sounds more acceptable to a permissive society and a permissive church. But it is still an abomination before God. This wickedness dwelt in Israel at the time of Jesus, and it dwells in the land today. When are we going to rid the land of this abomination?
When Jesus walked the earth, Rome and the government of Rome were full of homosexuals or sodomites. When Paul wrote his letter to the Romans, he addressed this abomination before God. Paul was speaking of God’s creation and how man had perverted it,
“Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonour their own bodies between themselves: Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen. For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature: And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet. And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient.” Romans 1:24-28
God’s Word says those who practice such things, God gave them up to uncleanness. These have changed the truth of God into a lie. They worship the creation more than the Creator. God has given them up to vile affections. Vile affections means “dishonorable desires”. These will receive the recompense or payment; that which is meet or the judgment which is due for their error. Those who practice such things have not retained God in their knowledge. They have rejected their knowledge of God and do what pleases the flesh. And God has turned them over to a reprobate mind. Reprobate means “rejected of God”. When these minds that are involved in this abomination have been rejected by God, they continue in their degradation.
“Being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity; whisperers, Backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, Without understanding, covenantbreakers, without natural affection, implacable, unmerciful: Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them.” Romans 1:29-32
They become filled with all unrighteousness. Even when they know the judgment of God, that they who do such things are worthy of death, not only continue to do them but they have pleasure in those who commit these abominations before God. Jude also wrote,
“Even as Sodom and Gomorrah, and the cities about them in like manner, giving themselves over to fornication, and going after strange flesh, are set forth for an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire.” Jude 7
Sodom and Gomorrah were given to us as examples of God’s judgment on such activities. The word Sodomite comes from Sodom. The word Sodom means “fettered, in bondage”. Those who practice this abomination are in total bondage to that lifestyle. They forsake all others to be with those who practice this abomination. They are given over to a mind that has been rejected by God.
Our God is a righteous judge. He judges nothing unless it is absolutely clear what is acceptable in His sight and what He must judge. He has given us many examples in His Word of His judgment on homosexuality. And yet this nation allows this abomination to march in the streets, wear the uniform of the nation, become police officers, teach our children and hold high government offices. If God judged the Canaanites because they defiled the land, can God allow this nation and this government to continue in this abomination without His hand of judgment being close?
It is well to ask, “What about the church?” Homosexuals sit in the congregations and nothing is said. No conviction is forth coming, nor is any separation demanded from such activities. It has become acceptable by many mainline, denominational systems, where known, practicing homosexuals are ordained into the ministry. This is abomination standing in the holy place. The prophet Jeremiah spoke of this,
“We are confounded, because we have heard reproach: shame hath covered our faces: for strangers are come into the sanctuaries of the Lord’s house.” Jeremiah 51:51
Strangers, those who do not retain God in their conscience, are standing in the sanctuaries (pulpits). These have become teachers of God’s holy writ. What an abomination and affront before our God. It is a stink in His nostrils, and He has turned His face away. Anyone who has pleasure in such activities is the same as those who practice the abominable acts before God. There are homosexual churches that solemnize marriages between two practicing homosexuals in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, the abomination above all abominations. We are warned in the Word, “God will not be mocked.”
“Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.” Galatians 6:7
Those who are sowing these seeds of abomination will reap the fury of God in their presence. We have God’s Word on that. Matthew recorded the words of Jesus,
“When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoso readeth, let him understand.)” Matthew 24:15
The holy place is the pulpit of His sanctuary. The word desolation means “to make desolate”. Nothing is more desolate than when the shepherd abandons the flock. When these abominations enter into the flock, and nothing is done about it, then the Great Shepherd will abandon that flock, and they will become a desolation in the sight of God.
God judged the Canaanites and Sodom and Gomorrah, as examples to His chosen. And He will judge this abomination that is in our midst today. How far off can this judgment be? All the signs point to a soon judgment. Can we say we have not been warned?