“When the LORD your God brings you into the land which you go to possess, and has cast out many nations before you, the Hittites and the Girgashites and the Amorites and the Canaanites and the Perizzites and the Hivites and the Jebusites, seven nations greater and mightier than you, and when the LORD your God delivers them over to you, you shall conquer them and utterly destroy them.
You shall make no covenant with them nor show mercy to them.
[Deuteronomy 7:1-2 NKJV]
The Hivites - their name means 'village dwellers' from a word meaning to tell; make known; declare; show. They were people who are governed by a need to gossip, tell lies and whose tongues are always wagging – keen to expose instead of covering and protecting. Doesn’t seem like much really – but a strong and mighty nation nonetheless, for it is the complete opposite of all we need to be in Jesus. He was truth, and these spirits are anything but.
As a ‘village dweller’, in that I live in a beautiful village in the west of Scotland, I appreciate what is meant here. It is not that all villagers lie and tell tales, though doubtless that happens here as in any community, but that in small gatherings there can develop an insularity a separating from the way the truth and the life, which comes down to a very introverted behaviour, complete selfishness, which finds its outlet in condemning others - and obviously it keeps us apart from God.
James summed it up in these verses ...
Understand [this], my beloved brethren. Let every man be quick to hear [a ready listener], slow to speak, slow to take offense and to get angry. For man’s anger does not promote the righteousness God [wishes and requires].
So get rid of all uncleanness and the rampant outgrowth of wickedness, and in a humble (gentle, modest) spirit receive and welcome the Word which implanted and rooted [in your hearts] contains the power to save your souls.
But be doers of the Word [obey the message], and not merely listeners to it, betraying yourselves [into deception by reasoning contrary to the Truth].
For if anyone only listens to the Word without obeying it and being a doer of it, he is like a man who looks carefully at his [own] natural face in a mirror; for he thoughtfully observes himself, and then goes off and promptly forgets what he was like.
But he who looks carefully into the faultless law, the [law] of liberty, and is faithful to it and perseveres in looking into it, being not a heedless listener who forgets but an active doer [who obeys], he shall be blessed in his doing (his life of obedience).
If anyone thinks himself to be religious (piously observant of the external duties of his faith) and does not bridle his tongue but deludes his own heart, this person’s religious service is worthless (futile, barren).
External religious worship [religion as it is expressed in outward acts] that is pure and unblemished in the sight of God the Father is this: to visit and help and care for the orphans and widows in their affliction and need, and to keep oneself unspotted and uncontaminated from the world.
[James 1:19-27 AMPC]
I had not thought of it this way until I read James’ words, but anger is a form of the Hivite spirit. It is making known, telling out a complete self-centredness against another or others. It is the opposite of the peace we know when The Lord is with us, even in the midst of the trial.
Speak to Him, talk to Jesus. In that moment, His peace will fill you and anger, lies and self will flee ...
“TalkTo Me” - Chuck Girard
OSWALD CHAMBERS - RUN TODAY’S RACE
Thursday 18th June 2020
The suffering which springs from being “a meddler in other men’s matters” (a busy-body) is humiliating to the last degree. A free translation of 1 Thessalonians 4:11 might well read, “Study to shut up and mind your own business” and among all the texts that hang on our wall let this be one.