Proverbs 15:11, Hell and destruction are before the LORD: how much more then the hearts of the children of men?
Have you peeked into the shadows of the damned?
Have your eyes beheld the world of the spirits? Can you describe in detail the gates of death?
Do you know the interior floor plan of the world of darkness? Can you find your way from room to room?
Much imagination is exercised by the people of this world about the concealed regions of the lost.
But it is all conjecture because no man has been there and returned to tell about it.
Hell is a place of no return.
God has concealed a vision of Hell from our eyes.
Destruction, another name for Hades, is also kept from our view.
And along with Hell and destruction God does not let us see in full the wickedness and deceitfulness of the hearts of the children of men.
We are not up to it. We cannot handle it. It is too loathsome!
These views are not given to us to see. God has so ordained it to be.
We are made in God's image but only his image.
We have attributes of God but we cannot do the things of God that he does not give us or allow us to do.
He purposely has limited us. He gives us eyes to see but only in one direction at a time.
Hell or Sheowl is the world of the dead, hidden from our sight but not God's sight.
Destruction is from the word "abaddone" which means a perishing, it means Hades.
It indicates continual perishing, perishing without end.
Any real understanding that we have of these places comes from God through his word and his word alone because Hell and Destruction are not before our eyes as they are with God.
We are not able to examine it for ourselves and live to tell about it.
But every nook and every cranny of Hell is open to the searching eyes of God.
He knows every rock and every fire and every smoke of this hidden region.
Every one of the billions of the dead that reside there is known to the eyes of God.
He sees the pain and suffering and futility of every one of the residents of Hell and Destruction.
He hears their cries and he knows every detail of why they are there.
He knows every demon, every evil spirit, he knows every thought, of his adversary the devil-Satan-the wicked one, and all of his evil helpers.
God knows all his plans, he knows all his schemes, his thoughts and he knows all his feelings.
As Proverbs 15:3, says, The eyes of the LORD are in every place, beholding the evil and the good.
And Jeremiah 23:24, Can any hide himself in secret places that I shall not see him? saith the LORD. Do not I fill heaven and earth? saith the LORD.
Psalm 139:7,8, Whither shall I go from thy spirit? or whither shall I flee from thy presence? If I ascend up into heaven, thou art there: if I make my bed in hell, behold, thou art there.
So the proverb before us today reminds us that even the most hidden things that we can imagine, that of Hell and destruction, are not hidden from the eyes of him with whom we have to do.
Therefore Solomon concludes that if this is possible for the God of heaven how much more possible is it for him to see into the reaches of the hearts of the children of men.
But the heart is indeed deceitful and desperate to be wicked.
It wants so to be wicked.
It desires with all its strength to be wicked. It is incurable in its sickness to be wicked.
It will deceive man into thinking that God cannot know what is taking place in it.
The heart will convince that it is possible to keep secrets from God.
It will build secret rooms that it is convinced that God cannot find or penetrate.
We see this in Psalm 10:4-11, Why standest thou afar off, O LORD? why hidest thou thyself in times of trouble? The wicked, through the pride of his countenance, will not seek after God: God is not in all his thoughts. His ways are always grievous; thy judgments are far above out of his sight: as for all his enemies, he puffeth at them. He hath said in his heart, I shall not be moved: for I shall never be in adversity. His mouth is full of cursing and deceit and fraud: under his tongue is mischief and vanity. He sitteth in the lurking places of the villages: in the secret places doth he murder the innocent: his eyes are privily set against the poor. He lieth in wait secretly as a lion in his den: he lieth in wait to catch the poor: he doth catch the poor, when he draweth him into his net. He croucheth, and humbleth himself, that the poor may fall by his strong ones. He hath said in his heart, God hath forgotten: he hideth his face; he will never see it.
That is a picture that God gives us of the heart of the children of men.
Without the light of the word of God we would not know that.
Our heart would protest against this knowledge. Our heart would say this cannot be so.
Our heart will convince us that we can hide from God simply by saying that God does not exist.
But this proverb tells us that this is not so.
The most secret behavior, the most secret conduct of man, the most secret thoughts of man, are as bright as the brightest day to the eyes of God.
Isaiah 29:15 says: Woe unto them that seek deep to hide their counsel from the LORD, and their works are in the dark, and they say, Who seeth us? and who knoweth us?
Psalm 44:21, Shall not God search this out? for he knoweth the secrets of the heart.
Jeremiah 17:10, I the LORD search the heart, I try the reins, even to give every man according to his ways, and according to the fruit of his doings.
Jesus said in Matt. 15:19, that out of the heart comes evil thoughts, murder, adultery, fornication, theft, false witness, slander.
Jesus is saying that defilement comes from within rather than from without.
And because the heart is at the root of the problem, this is the place where God does His work in us.
This is why he spends time in our heart. The heart is the place where the work needs to be done.
And He and he alone is able to search out the heart. He always goes to the root of a problem.
He does not involve himself in coverings, enhancements, or fix-ups for the heart of man.
The heart is the field where he sows the seed of the Word of God in order to create a new heart, a heart that is loyal to Jesus Christ.
David knew this when in Psalm 51:10, he cried: Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me.
And upon creation of that clean heart the believing heart welcomes the searching eye of God.
For it will result in the casting out of the filth, the wickedness, the evil that prevents the believer from the right devotion to God.
David knew this wisdom when in Psalm 139:23,24, he prayed, Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts: And see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.