The topic of the summer fast evening service was “Love for the truth.” After the praise and worship, prayer and testimony, Pastor Sunday came to the stage. The topicof his sermon was entitled “Slyness is a proof of the lack of love for the truth.”
Slyness – is the lack of love for the truth. If people’s first reaction after beingrebuked is to make excuses, it shows lack of love for the truth, slyness. “A troublemaker and a villain, who goes about with a corrupt mouth, who winks maliciously with his eye, signals with his feetand motions with his fingers, who plots evil with deceit in his heart- he always stirs up conflict.” (Proverbs 6:12-14). Example: even the killers are trying to justify themself.
Signs of slyness: when a person
“slides down”, wriggles, evades, “dodges”,slip out, can not give a clear answer “yes” – “yes” or “no” – “no“, constantly gives an explanations.
Righteousness is when a person admits he did wrong, repents, and this makes him perfect, righteous, and then he goes on.
“But let your communication be: yes – yes, or: No – no, for whatsoever is more than these cometh of evil ” (Matthew 5:37)
Lev Nikolayevich Tolstoy: “«The surest sign of the truth – simplicity and clarity. Lying is always complicated, wordy and pretentious.»
Reaction of slyness corrections:
Usually people want to “ hush issues up“; they quickly, hurl an answer back: remarks, explanations, instead of staying open for comments, not resisting, allowing words to go deep into our essence (as pegs which are hammered)
The reason people want to quickly hush vexing questions and lies up is in the fact that we want to AVOID THE PAIN. Although the pain has value – it helps: to reveal tumors, to remove the pus and infection then to heal the wound
and remember the lesson for a long time.
When a person reacts to any remark by retaliatory attacks, it means that he refuses to take any help from the outside; the process of “healing”. He convinces himself and others that he is doing well, has already changed, corrected himself, he does not let himself delve into the issue.
The opposite of slyness
What is the opposite of slyness: truthfulness, transparency – in relationships, in life
without duplicity, to be real, just as you are.
Example: what does it mean to be real?
20 years ago, Pastor Sunday was not a pastor yet and served as an interpreter in one of the ministries.
Since he is an expressive man, during translation he laughed and enjoyed the process.
One of the pastors was very indignant by Pastor Sunday’s behavior.
If a person wants to laugh, why should they keep silent? He will become hypocrite by doing so. Slyness is when you think in one way and act by another one. Slynessis sin, and all who do it will not inherit the Kingdom of God. A person should be the same inside and outside. The one who laughs, thinking that it is normal for him, has the right todo it. The one who is indignat about it, thinking that it is not normal, also has the right to think that way. One has the right to laugh, the other has a right to be indignant, and one cannot stop the other.
- Dependence on people’s opinions can destroy a personality. The indignation of the second person should not stop the first one, otherwise he is his master, but one person is not God for the other one.If the first person in this instance says, “Oh, they are indignant, I better shut up!” – Then he admits he is not a person; thus, a person who is not faithful to himself destroyshis own values.
The right of one to resent has no more authority than the right of freedom ofexpression of another one. The negative reaction of someone should not be a stop sign for us, you must take it as a personal response: I respect his point of view, but I am not moved by it.
All people are different, therefore, we all have different perceptions and reactions
Itis always interesting to know the point of view of another man, but his point of view must not throw us into confusion and make us nervous.
Honore de Balzac: “ In the place where everyone is humpbacked, slenderness becomes ugliness”
Example: Pastor Sunday’s life.
His life style: everything, you can see in pastor Sunday visibly is what he has inside of him. He has no secrets.
If pastor Sunday is friendly, it means he is really glad to see you. If he asks a question, it is because he is truly interested to know the answer.
Pastor is shocked when a man does something different from what he actually says, – this is not the values of the Kingdom of God.
The reasons of slyness
1. Loving ourselves
If a man is concerned about how other people see him, it means that he loves himself more than he loves God and his truth.
People want to look good, especially before other people.
Consequences of selflove
Ideology of such a man builds not on the truth, but on himself: egocentrism, ambitions, ‘I’, “own truth”; Egostill remains on the throne of theirlife. Jesus is not the Lord of their whole life.Such people will not inherit the Kingdom of God , Heaven belongs only to people, who live according to Gods truth.
If a man thinks more about another person‘s opinion, other people would say this is a type of hypocrisy.
A man tries to justify himself, to cover up the traces, to conceal his guilt. People are ashamed to conceal their own failure or that they are not right.
If we have something inside of us and do not want to reveal it,this means that we wear a mask, build a throne for satan by this, for he would come and dominate under these situations that this person does not want to reveal.
It is important to strive for the light
«And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil; For every one that doeth evil hateth the light, neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved.But he that doeth truth cometh to the light, that his deeds may be made manifest, that they are wrought in God.» (John 3:19-21)
What we do not reveal remains in the darkness. It concerns our thoughts, our secret life. It becomesa reason of: blame, fratricide, abhorrence, offence, depression, betrayal, and revenge.
If one values, esteems himself ortheir own reputation more than esteeming God, he can not be Christ‘sdisciple: «So likewise, whosoever he be of you that forsaketh not all that he hath, he cannot be my disciple.» (Luk.14:33)
2. Feeling of fear
It is a false feeling that does not reflect reality. It is a style of life for people who think a lot of themselves: worry, thinking, focusing, instead of being focused on God and wishing to please Him.
Forms of revealing slyness
1. Trying to blame others.
These are efforts tojustify oneself, to find the guilty, to blame other people blaming them for the irown problems and misfortunes: “All are guilty, but not me!”
Other’s weaknesses should not become an object of our attention. DO NOT BLAME ANOTHER MAN BECAUSE HE DOES NOT SIN THE SAME WAY YOU DO
- It is necessary to examine ourselves, not other people: it is necessary to judge ourselves to not be judged by God (1 Corth. 11:31-32). If a man see a mote in the brother’s eye, it means that he has a beam in his own eye (Мatt. 7:3-5, Luke 6:41-42), and it would be better to take care of that beam!
What kind of help is it?
- It consists of a desire to help extract a twig from the eye of ones neighbour, but not to blame (blame only the devil).
To correct with love: I want to help someoneso they will never do the same wrong things.
Only having “scanned” oneself, one can approach the other person and say, “I know how to get out of this situation.” Just in case the person does not listen, you need to tell it to the churchn or to encourage them to continue to sin, but for them to understand and beattained for eternity. (Matt.18 :15-17). The attempt to blame others, to whitewash oneself , an attempt to hide our own imperfections. «The more a man is flawless outside, the more demons he has inside»
Example: when some of the leaders fall into sin. Others start to hold him up to brand them with shame. Actually, a man is different for 99%, he is not so bad, as others think about him. But this is a sin of self-righteousness: all, who point fingers at him also fight with something, they are the same as the sinner “inveterate sinner”.
2. Self-condemnation is a form of slyness
Those who blame themselves actually do not want to work on themselves: «It would be better if I do self-reproach!»
In fact, one may not work to change themselves and get rid of weakness once and for all. They prefer to remain in a prey state.
Prey psychology is an addiction.
When a man brings himself to bay, it becomes his habitat, a place where he feels comfortable
Such a man stops his progress.
Example: where does self pity come from?
If a parent “lisps” pity to their children too much, then a man will grow up:
- Without habits to make strict rules for himself
- Looking for another person who will pity him and if pity is not found he will fall into self-condemnation
Without love of the truth, self pity can cause a loss of salvation. For some, it would be enough trifling to cause the devil to catch them and take them away from their path of eternal life.
For example: Pastor Sunday passed by someone without greeting them or not smiling, or someonequarreled with them, anda scandal broke out.
• A long road lies ahead for those, who blame others
- Those who blame themselves have already passed half of the road
- One who blames no one reaches the end
Ways of overcoming slyness
1. Life without excuses
To be set free from slyness one has to learn
- To face the truth: «True, I was in the wrong, I have to change!»
- To take responsibility for their own life andactions.
- Do not look for an excuse.
“Keep your mouth free of perversity; keep corrupt talk far from your lips” (Proverbs 4:24).
2. Ability to repent
God gives grace to the humble only. (1 Peter 5:5) and gives salvation through repentance
If a man is truthful and loves the truth, he will roll up his sleeves and get down to working on himself. «The integrity of the upright guides them, but the unfaithful are destroyed by their duplicity»(Proverbs.11:3).
From the Summer fast
July 30, 2013, Kyiv
Press Center of the Embassy of God Church