We need to seriously sit down from time to time and ask ourselves two very pointed questions. The first is this, "What way am I going?" That describes the path that we are walking. There is a way that we are going - a series of choices that is slowly but surely making a way for us. Another way to put it is where is my "lifestyle" going. A choice yields a consequence - a series of choices leads to a habit - and a way of choosing will lead to a lifestyle. Where are our choices leading us? We read here that the way of the wicked is an abomination to the Lord. God looks at the consistent choices of the wicked - and He hates it. He considers it an abomination to Him. The word used here for wicked means the guilty or the transgressor. This is the man who looks at God's law - God's Word - and just walks over it on his way to doing whatever he wants. He is a transgressor - one who steps over the line - who ignores the rules - at least the rules of God.
We learn from this proverb that God considers this way of living an abomination. It is a little comforting to see that God says it is the way of the wicked that is an abomination - not the wicked person himself. But God is not at all shy in saying how much He hates the wicked way - the wicked lifestyle. The word abomination means that God sees the lifestyle choices of the wicked and finds them disgusting, abhorent, and abominable. This is something I think we've had a tendency to shy away from in recent years. We don't call sin what it is - an abomination. Sin absolutely disgusts God. He abhors it! There is wrath that is being stored up for the wicked - and we need to see this because too often we tend to want to mollify how God feels about sin. But the cross should solve for us once and for all that God hates sin. If this is how He had to punish His Son for becoming sin - believe the Scriptures when they say that God hates sin!
But before this proverb becomes just about how God considers sin an abomination - we need to see the second half of this proverb. It holds great promise and hope for the one who pursues what is right. The Lord loves the one who pursues righteousness. What a great promise this is for us. Note does not say that the Lord only loves the one who achieves righteousness. It says pursue! Thus, we may not always live as righteous as we want - we may not always be the perfect example of godliness and holiness - but when we pursue it (or pursue Him) - God loves it!
The word "pursues" here means to chase after or to chase down. This is not just a casual pursuit of righteousness, it is a dedicated and passionate pursuit. God absolutely loves it when we pursue righteousness. He delights in one who says that he wants God's ways - not wicked ways. Since we are talking about a true understanding of righteousness - we also must include that he chases after righteousness the right way. He does not seek it by works - but realizes that faith-based righteousness that is found only in the Lord Jesus Christ is the only way to become righteous. As he embraces this righteousness he also wants to learn how to cooperate with the Holy Spirit as the fruit of the Spirit is produced within him. He cooperates by dying to self and living only to please God in what he does.
There are two ways presented before us in this proverb. There is the way of wickedness that rejects God and rejects His holiness and truth - and there is the passionate pursuit of righteousness. This is not a pursuit of our own righteousness obtained by the Law - but a pursuit which is by faith from first to last. This pursuit is eventually set upon the Lord Jesus Christ. We pursue Him - a relationship with Him and a passion to serve and to love Him with all our hearts.