“Whoso is partner with a thief hateth his own soul: he heareth cursing, and bewrayeth it not.”
When was the last time you used “bewrayeth” in a conversation? I don’t know if I have ever even seen it in a crossword puzzle. But before we go any further, let’s make sure we understand this old English word.
According to Strong’s Concordance, the Hebrew נָגַד (nagad ) occurs 370 times in the King James Version. Besides “bewrayeth,” nagad is translated most often as “tell,” “declare,” and “shew.” Therefore, it is safe to conclude that “bewrayeth” carries with it the idea of making something known or telling it the way it is.
So, then, what does “bewrayeth’ have to do with partnering with a thief and hating one’s soul?
First, it must be understood that a partner in crime is just as guilty as his other partner in crime. The one driving the getaway car and the one laundering the money are just as guilty of bank robbery as the one who takes the bag of cash from the safe.
Are you a partner with a thief? Do you recoil at that question? Stop and consider that if you know of someone committing a crime, no matter how small, then you are just as guilty if you keep silent. For instance, do you know of a man who beats his wife and yet have never reported the abuse? If so, then you are enabling him to do his dirty work, which makes you his partner in crime.
The hard thing to grasp is that when we try to stay out of something by remaining silent, we are not doing ourselves a favor. So many people will witness a wrong or learn of a crime, but keep silent in order to protect themselves. But even though one may stay out of the spotlight or courtroom, the one that “bewrayeth it not” hates his own soul.
What is a worse form of hate: to hate one’s body, or hate one’s soul? Which is worse, the fear of jail time or eternal damnation? Simply put, there are deeper consequences for “not getting involved” than for speaking out in the face of evil.
January 1st, 2014 at 8:40 pm
Wow – I commend you for writing this post Anthony! It is one of the ways and reasons in which I began working as an undercover operative to begin with. You are right – there is no justice to be found in silence, nor is there freedom to be found in silence. Blessings to you my friend and Happy New Year!
January 2nd, 2014 at 1:06 am
To be honest, Jessie, I actually thought about you when I wrote this. I also thought about children who are forced to endure secret abuse, even though they could be free if someone would just be brave enough to make a call. There are so many criminals that go unpunished because of others who choose not to get involved.
January 2nd, 2014 at 4:18 pm
My friend… thank you…
January 4th, 2014 at 10:57 am
Wow, what a true and strong word. It is frightening how dangerous silence can be.
January 9th, 2014 at 12:37 am
I’m so glad you unpacked that verse for me. It is one that confused me. But now that I get it I see that I’ve been living the telling all my life. I can’t even let unfairness go without fixing! I’m sure I’ve failed at times on this but I can’t stand injustice so it surely can’t go on in my watch.