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by Kreighton L. Chan, M.D., M.Div., Deacon

A sermon preached at the Fundamentalist Baptist Tabernacle of Los Angeles
Lord's Day Evening, July 21, 2002

"The Lord shall cut off all flattering lips, and the tongue that speaketh proud things" (Psalm 12:3).

You will look long and hard before you find a person that speaks the truth about himself. That's because all sinners have a proud tongue. They all speak only good of themselves. But this is not based on truth. They will be too easy on themselves and too strict on others. To look good to others they must lie about themselves. Their proud heart teaches them to lie like that. They even trick themselves into believing that they are good people.

Why are you so proud of yourself when you should be ashamed over your sinfulness? That's because your heart is wicked and depraved:

"An evil man out of the evil treasure of his heart bringeth forth that which is evil: for of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaketh" (Luke 6:45b).

Your tongue speaks proud things because your heart is evil. Nothing but evil and wickedness can come out of a sinful heart like yours. Proud people like you live in a world that they've made up. It's not the real world at all. They don't want to face the truth of how bad they really are. The Bible says, "the whole world lieth in wickedness" (I John 5:19). You too lie in wickedness. The way you lie about yourself is proof of this.

I. You say proud things about yourself.

"The Lord shall cut off all flattering lips, and the tongue that speaketh proud things" (Psalm 12:3).

1. "I'm a good and decent person."

You say, "I feel good about myself. I'm basically a good and honest person who hasn't hurt anyone. I'm not like the 'bad people' who kill and rob and cheat."

"Most men will proclaim every one his own goodness: but a faithful man who can find?" (Proverbs 20:6).

You, like most men, will say that you're good. Maybe you haven't killed or robbed or cheated. But you have missed church on Sundays, and you have lied repeatedly. You don't love God with all your heart, soul, and strength as the Bible commands you to. Also, you've hated people at times, which Jesus said is committing murder in your heart. And you've lusted after a girl or boy or looked at pornography, which Jesus says is committing adultery in your heart.

It's not true when you say you are a good and decent person. You lie like this because you're a proud sinner.

"An high look, and a proud heart, and the plowing of the wicked, is sin" (Proverbs 21:4).

2. "I'm pleased with what I have done."

So you're pleased with yourself, are you? And just what things have you done that you have to brag about? Perhaps you're pleased with yourself that you're in college or have a college degree. Perhaps you have a decent job, a little money in the bank, or have a new car to cruise around town with. Maybe you even have a family with children and live in a house of your own.

If you were indeed a great man like a world famous scientist or author there might be some small reason to be pleased with yourself. But there is no reason for you to be pleased with yourself. Your attitude is based on a false sense of pride. You have simply told yourself a lie with great swelling words.

"And thou say in thine heart, My power and the might of mine hand hath gotten me this wealth. But thou shalt remember the Lord thy God: for it is he that giveth thee power to get wealth" (Deuteronomy 8:17).

Because God is good He has given you a healthy body and a mind to work and think with. Since you have made some small effort at your work or school you, as well as many other people, have had some success. If God did not give you a healthy body and mind, among other things, you would not have been able to do anything.

"And Ephraim said, Yet I am become rich, I have found me out substance: in all my labours they shall find none iniquity in me that were sin" (Hosea 12:8).

Ephraim fooled himself as you do that it was not a sin to boast over getting riches by his own effort. But make no mistake about it. Pride is in fact a great sin. Ephraim was eventually given up by God.

3. "I'm popular and I have a lot of good friends."

"You see, I don't really need to come to church like some people do. You folks are nice all right but I'm not really lonely and I don't need it. I already have a lot of good close friends that will stick with me through thick and thin."

Oh really! You have a lot of good, close friends, do you? The Bible says,

"My kinsfolk have failed, and my familiar friends have forgotten me. All my inward friends abhorred me: and they whom I loved are turned against me" (Job 19:14, 19).

Your friends will fail you and forget you like they did Job. Your good, close, "inward" friends will also one day hate and turn against you when the times are bad.

The Bible says that rather than trusting your "friends" you should be suspicious of them.

"Take ye heed every one of his neighbour, and trust ye not in any brother: for every brother will utterly supplant, and every neighbour will walk with slanders" (Jeremiah 9:4).

You can't really trust and depend upon your friends. They are not people that you can count on when you're down and out. They will not be there for you when you leave your school, your job, or if you move. They will be out of your life. But the friends that you will make in church are truly friendly because, like Christ, we love and care for you.

"A man that hath friends must shew himself friendly: and there is a friend that sticketh closer than a brother" (Proverbs 18:24).

And we, your friends in church, don't move. We will always be here in church. We will stick closer to you than a brother.

"The Lord shall cut off all flattering lips, and the tongue that speaketh proud things" (Psalm 12:3).

II. You say proud things about your life.

You're concerned only with things that you can get in this world. But spiritual things, things that you can't feel, touch, or see, you don't care about.

1. "I want to become rich and have a good life."

It's not wrong to work hard to improve your life and acquire some comfort and security. But if that is the most important thing to you than you are proud, greedy, and selfish. In the end you will be left without anything but Hell.

"But they that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition" (I Timothy 6:9).

I would run from being rich if in the process I became poor toward God (Luke 12:21). This is a most deceptive sin. To you it doesn't seem sinful at all. You don't think of it as you do lying, cheating, or killing. But listen to what God says in the Bible:

"The love of money is the root of all evil" (I Timothy 6:10a).

Your love of money is the root, or basis for all other evils and sin. For instead of worshiping God you worship your riches. Instead of depending upon God you depend on your riches. Indeed money is your God. The Bible says:

"No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon" (Matthew 6:24).

The truth is you love money and you hate God. That is why the "love of money is the root of all evil." Your sin is just as bad, no, worse than bowing before a stature of Buddha or the Virgin Mary.

Thinking about riches without thinking about God will only bring a curse, sadness, and sorrow to you. But the man who seeks God and His kingdom first will be blessed by God.

"The blessing of the Lord, it maketh rich, and he addeth no sorrow with it" (Proverbs 10:22).

2. "I want people to like and respect me."

This seems like a simple and honest desire but it is not. That's because making what others think about you more important than what God thinks about you is a sin. The Bible says,

"These are murmurers, complainers, walking after their own lusts; and their mouth speaketh great swelling words, having men's persons in admiration because of advantage" (Jude 16).

You want people to think and talk well of you. To make sure this happens you not only brag about yourself but you brag about your friends also. You can pat each other on the back for now but the Bible says that soon you will both suffer for it.

"Let them alone: they be blind leaders of the blind. And if the blind lead the blind, both shall fall into the ditch"
   (Matthew 15:14).

3. "I want to have fun and enjoy life."

This is the goal of most young people but this is also true of other people too. You live just to entertain yourself. You live your life for the thrill and excitement of sin. You're always thinking how you get away from boring parts of life like school and work. You are constantly seeking "escapes" in the way of "hanging out with your friends," "clubbing," looking at pornography, having dirty sex, taking drugs, or just having a "weekend getaway." God never enters into your thinking. And although you never think about God, God thinks hard and strong about you:

"Therefore hear now this, thou that art given to pleasures, that dwellest carelessly, that sayest in thine heart, I am, and none else beside me; Therefore shall evil come upon thee; thou shalt not know from whence it riseth" (Isaiah 47:8, l1a).

Fun and worldly pleasure may bring you some satisfaction but it doesn't last long. And it doesn't give you any real peace and happiness. If you only want fun and pleasure in life then you are sure to go to Hell when you die.

"Whose end is destruction, whose God is their belly, and whose glory is in their shame, who mind earthly things"
   (Philippians 3:19).

"The Lord shall cut off all flattering lips, and the tongue that speaketh proud things" (Psalm 12:3).

III. You say proud things about God.

By this I mean that you say or think things as if God doesn't exist. So the proud man will say:

"Our lips are our own: who is lord over us?" (Psalm 12:4b)

In other words, you say, "I'm my own God. I can do what I want and I don't have to answer to anyone for what I do. I don't care what God thinks." Oh, you might not say it exactly this way but you might as well because you live your life as if He doesn't exist.

1. "I don't really think about God."

I know you don't. How could you possibly be thinking about God with all the sins that you do and how you're not concerned with escaping Hell. You are completely stupid and when it comes to the meaning of life and what part God has in all this. In fact, the Bible calls you a fool:

"The fool hath said in his heart, There is no God. They are corrupt, they have done abominable works, there is none that doeth good" (Psalm 14:1).

You're not only a fool because you live your life as if there were no God but you're also a proud fool.

"The wicked, through the pride of his countenance, will not seek after God: God is not in all his thoughts" (Psalm 10:4).

2. "God doesn't really look at my sins."

The Bible says that even if you believe in God, you still have a wrong view of Him. In fact, you think He thinks the way that you do:

"Thou thoughtest that I was altogether such an one as thyself" (Psalm 50:21b).

And so, because you don't think what you do are sins, you think that God doesn't think that they are sins either. In fact, you think he doesn't notice them at all, or that they are so unimportant that He quickly forgets about them.

"He hath said in his heart, God hath forgotten: he hideth his face; he will never see it" (Psalm 10:11).

Some of you think that God is in someway limited and is not omniscient, that He doesn't know everything.

"And thou sayest, How doth God know? can he judge through the dark cloud?" (Job 22:13).

But you couldn't be more wrong. The real God, not the God that you have imagined, does not think lightly of sin like you do, is not forgetful, and is able to see all your sins. The Bible says,

"The eyes of the Lord are in every place, beholding the evil" (Proverbs 15:3).

And because God sees your sins and will judge them you are in deep trouble. You have broken God's law and are in danger of going to Hell. You had better believe that God sees your sins. And then prepare to meet God.

"The Lord shall cut off all flattering lips, and the tongue that speaketh proud things" (Psalm 12:3).

IV. You say proud things about your future.

"With our tongue will we prevail" (Psalm 12:4b).

How could you say a more unreal thing? With your tongue you will prevail? Prevail or overcome whom? Do you really believe that you will overcome God? Certainly not with your small and proud tongue! What a dream when you say, "With our tongue will we prevail."

1. "I'm young with a long and good future ahead of me."

This is a common proud and hopeful statement by a young person. Yes, I know you are immortal and will live forever. Oh, you will not say so but you think so. Death seems so far off and unreal to you that it is doesn't even concern you. You say, "How can I think about death when I'm so young and have my whole life ahead of me to live?" Don't bet on it that you're right.

"Whereas ye know not what shall be on the morrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapour, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away" (James 4:14).

King David, though a young person like you at the time, had the wisdom to know that he could die at any time. He said,

"There is but a step between me and death" (I Samuel 20:3b).

If you thought the same thing -that you could die at any time and stand before God in judgment for your sins-that could be the beginning of awakening for you. Stop lying to yourself with the proud and hopeful thought that you will live a long time. Many in Hell tonight have thought the same thing. Don't make the same mistake.

2. "I'm young and want to have fun now. I'll be serious and become a Christian later."

What you really mean is that you want to sin some more. You say, "Maybe when I become really old and sin isn't fun anymore then I'll consider becoming a real Christian."

Listen to what happened to a man named Felix:

"And as he reasoned of righteousness, temperance, and judgment to come, Felix trembled, and answered, Go thy way for this time; when I have a convenient season, I will call for thee" (Acts 24:25).

Felix heard Paul's preaching and was convicted of his sin, so much so that he "trembled." But he was not ready to become a Christian because he wanted to sin some more. He thought wrongly that he could become a Christian any time he wanted, at a "convenient season." However, that time never came and Felix died in his sins and went to Hell.

God only gives you certain chances to hear the gospel and be saved. The Bible recorded only one chance for Felix to be saved. He blew it and never had a chance again. Don't make the same foolish mistake that Felix did.

And the longer you wait and put it off your condition only becomes worse and your heart becomes harder. That will only make it less likely that you will ever become a real Christian. Better become a Christian while God is calling you. If you wait it might be too late.

"He, that being often reproved hardeneth his neck, shall suddenly be destroyed, and that without remedy"
   (Proverbs 29:1).

3. "If I stay in this church and continue hearing good gospel sermons then I will be saved one day."

I'm glad that you've decided to stay in church and hear the gospel preached every week. But that alone will not save you. There are many young people who have been raised in our church, have heard hundreds of gospel sermons, and yet remain lost. That alone is not the answer. There's more.

The sermons must affect you. You must think about them. You must study and take the bulletin home with you every week and look up the verses. You should think frequently about your sinful and wicked heart and the awful sins that you commit. You need to read the Bible daily and ask God to speak to you through it. Come to the inquiry room to be counseled by the pastor regarding your conversion. You need to pray that you will be awakened and converted soon before it's too late. In short, you must strive and press to enter Christ.

"Strive to enter in at the strait gate: for many, I say unto you, will seek to enter in, and shall not be able" (Luke 13:24).

"The kingdom of God is preached, and every man presseth into it" (Luke 16:16b).

4. "I'm essentially a good person and I don't deserve to go to Hell."

A good person you say? With all the lying and proud talk that you're guilty of do you still think that you're a good person and don't deserve Hell?

Do you think that God Almighty will not judge you for all the proud and vain things that you say and believe?

The Bible says that God "will by no means clear the guilty" (Exodus 34:7). He will not clear and cancel out your sins from His records. He will hold you fully to blame for them and judge you righteously and eternally in Hell.

And God is particularly angry at this type of sin. Remember our text:

"The Lord shall cut off all flattering lips, and the tongue that speaketh proud things" (Psalm 12:3).

C. H. Spurgeon, "Prince of Preachers," tells us that ancient kings in Asia used terrible methods to torture those who lied:

"Lips were cut off and tongues torn out when offenders were convicted of lying or treason."

He points out that an even worse fate awaits those who are punished for sin.  

God is so fed up and angry over your sin that He would like to cut off your tongue that speaks proud things. Stick out your tongue right now. Imagine how painful and sickening it would be for God to cut it off right now. That shows you how much He hates your sin and how serious He is about punishing your sin.

And if you are to have any hope of being converted then you too must hate this sin, turn from it, and cut it off before God does. Although it would be terrible to have your tongue cut off, it would be far worse to go to Hell. Jesus taught the same thing about the importance of turning from sin as part of what it takes to avoid the terrors of Hell:

"And if thy hand offend thee, cut it off: it is better for thee to enter into life maimed, than having two hands to go into hell, into the fire that never shall be quenched" (Mark 9:43).

I'm telling you tonight to cut off your pride. Turn from it. Repent of it.  Have nothing to do with it any longer. Admit your wickedness in the sight of God and stop tricking yourself and living in a dream world. Come to Jesus for cleansing in His Blood.

Jesus shed His Blood on the cross for your sins. He died and was buried. But on the third day He rose again bodily from the grave and ascended to heaven. He is now seated at the right hand of God the Father. He loves you. He is waiting for you. Come to Him. He will wash your sins away in His Blood.


Scripture Read Before the Sermon by Dr. C. L. Cagan: Psalm 52:1-5.
Solo Sung Before the Sermon by Mr. Benjamin Kincaid Griffith:

"When I Survey the Wondrous Cross" (by Isaac Watts, 1674-1748)

You can read Dr. Hymers' sermons each week on the Internet
at Click on "Sermon Manuscripts."



by Dr. Kreighton L. Chan

"The Lord shall cut off all flattering lips, and the tongue that speaketh proud things" (Psalm 12:3).

(Luke 6:45b)

I.   You say proud things about yourself, Proverbs 20:6; 21:4;
Deuteronomy 8:17; Hosea 12:8; Job 19:14, 19;
Jeremiah 9:4; Proverbs 18:24.

II.  You say proud things about your life, I Timothy 6:9;6:10a;
Matthew 6:24; Proverbs 10:22; Jude 16; Proverbs 29:5;
Matthew 15:14; Isaiah 47:8,11a; Philippians 3:19.

III. You say proud things about God, Psalm 14:1; Psalm 10:4;
Psalm 50:24b; 10:11; Job 22:13; Proverbs 15:3.

IV. You say proud things about your future, James 4:14;
I Samuel 20:3b; Acts 24:25; Proverbs 29:1; Luke 13:24;
Luke 16:16b; Mark 9:43.