6 ¶ Eat thou not the bread of him that hath an evil eye, neither desire thou his dainty meats: 7 For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he: Eat and drink, saith he to thee; but his heart is not with thee. 8 The morsel which thou hast eaten shalt thou vomit up, and lose thy sweet words.
What is “an evil eye”? From a purely literal and practical point of view there is this paragraph in Matthew;
Matthew 6:19 ¶ Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal: 20 But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal: 21 For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also. 22 The light of the body is the eye: if therefore thine eye be single, thy whole body shall be full of light. 23 But if thine eye be evil, thy whole body shall be full of darkness. If therefore the light that is in thee be darkness, how great is that darkness! 24 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.
Apparently there is something wicked in the greedy way the person with the evil eye sees things. Again in the parable of the householder, an explanation of how it is not our concern that some work most of their lives for Christ and some come to Christ at the end of their life and yet both are saved.
Matthew 20:1 ¶ For the kingdom of heaven is like unto a man that is an householder, which went out early in the morning to hire labourers into his vineyard. 2 And when he had agreed with the labourers for a penny a day, he sent them into his vineyard. 3 And he went out about the third hour, and saw others standing idle in the marketplace, 4 And said unto them; Go ye also into the vineyard, and whatsoever is right I will give you. And they went their way. 5 Again he went out about the sixth and ninth hour, and did likewise. 6 And about the eleventh hour he went out, and found others standing idle, and saith unto them, Why stand ye here all the day idle? 7 They say unto him, Because no man hath hired us. He saith unto them, Go ye also into the vineyard; and whatsoever is right, that shall ye receive. 8 So when even was come, the lord of the vineyard saith unto his steward, Call the labourers, and give them their hire, beginning from the last unto the first. 9 And when they came that were hired about the eleventh hour, they received every man a penny. 10 But when the first came, they supposed that they should have received more; and they likewise received every man a penny. 11 And when they had received it, they murmured against the goodman of the house, 12 Saying, These last have wrought but one hour, and thou hast made them equal unto us, which have borne the burden and heat of the day. 13 But he answered one of them, and said, Friend, I do thee no wrong: didst not thou agree with me for a penny? 14 Take that thine is, and go thy way: I will give unto this last, even as unto thee. 15 Is it not lawful for me to do what I will with mine own? Is thine eye evil, because I am good? 16 So the last shall be first, and the first last: for many be called, but few chosen.
And then in Luke Jesus reproves the people listening to Him for rejecting what He has said,
Luke 11:29 ¶ And when the people were gathered thick together, he began to say, This is an evil generation: they seek a sign; and there shall no sign be given it, but the sign of Jonas the prophet. 30 For as Jonas was a sign unto the Ninevites, so shall also the Son of man be to this generation. 31 The queen of the south shall rise up in the judgment with the men of this generation, and condemn them: for she came from the utmost parts of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon; and, behold, a greater than Solomon is here. 32 The men of Nineve shall rise up in the judgment with this generation, and shall condemn it: for they repented at the preaching of Jonas; and, behold, a greater than Jonas is here. 33 No man, when he hath lighted a candle, putteth it in a secret place, neither under a bushel, but on a candlestick, that they which come in may see the light. 34 The light of the body is the eye: therefore when thine eye is single, thy whole body also is full of light; but when thine eye is evil, thy body also is full of darkness. 35 Take heed therefore that the light which is in thee be not darkness. 36 If thy whole body therefore be full of light, having no part dark, the whole shall be full of light, as when the bright shining of a candle doth give thee light.
Now, let’s look at this prophetically, from the understanding we’ve gotten from these verses. The Beast, whom we call the Anti-Christ even though that word is never used in the book of Revelation, has some physical issues.
Zechariah 11:17 Woe to the idol shepherd that leaveth the flock! the sword shall be upon his arm, and upon his right eye: his arm shall be clean dried up, and his right eye shall be utterly darkened.
Knowing that in Revelation it says this about him.
Revelation 13:3 And I saw one of his heads as it were wounded to death; and his deadly wound was healed: and all the world wondered after the beast.
Now, back to the Proverb. The Bible tells us that what a person is, he is from the inside, and we are not to judge on outward appearances.
Luke 6:45 A good man out of the good treasure of his heart bringeth forth that which is good; and 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.
Commentator John Gill calls this man with an evil eye a sordid, covetous man and warns not to eat with him. He says that the man’s hospitality is fake, just on the surface, and that everything you get from him will make you throw up. Dr. Ruckman, though, points to the Anti-Christ, the Beast of Revelation.
I would say to beware of the flatterer, the beguiling person who invites you to a banquet. Oh, if I could write a book to young men and women about all of the false and deceiving things you’ll hear from people to try to ensnare you in their sin and how to know from the first word out of someone’s mouth whether or not they are on “the make.”
But, look here to another meaning. We’ve had several warnings about the rich and powerful. The Chrisitan, the evangelist, the preacher who preaches God’s words boldly and with power comes to the attention of the powerful person. The person invites them to be seen with them, for a photo opportunity, or a newspaper account of the important so and so shaking hands with the preacher who is creating a storm. Do not allow yourself to be ensnared in their deceitful theater because what hogwash they’ve fed you in their phony approval of your Godliness and spiritual power you will throw up again and your association with them will cause you to lose the sweet words that God has given you.
Psalm 119:103 How sweet are thy words unto my taste! yea, sweeter than honey to my mouth!
So, young men who may feel called to preach, please listen. Stay on track. Don’t get sidetracked. If the rich and powerful seem approving of you, remember it is only a pretense. They will use you for their dark purposes. If you surrender to the admiration of the greedy and lustful for power, I guarantee you will lose the sweet words that Christ has put in your mouth. I don’t know who this is for but be warned. You’ve heard it here. Your place is not in the rich homes and opulent palaces but in the street exhorting and reproving them from outside, not sitting at dinner with them, enjoying their delicacies.
In conclusion, I would say this to everyone. Beware of the politician or man of wealth who makes public prayers, imploring God’s hand on America, who uses his or her presumed faith as a political tool to gain your approval and acceptance and support. Haven’t we seen that they are phony and fake and that the tender morsels they feed us we will throw up? Do they not make it hard for you to speak God’s words because they have brought shame on the cause of Christ? Remember the old e.e. cummings untitled poem we learned in school;
"next to of course god america i
love you land of the pilgrims' and so forth oh
say can you see by the dawn's early my
country 'tis of centuries come and go
and are no more what of it we should worry
in every language even deafanddumb
thy sons acclaim your glorious name by gorry
by jingo by gee by gosh by gum
why talk of beauty what could be more beaut-
iful than these heroic happy dead
who rushed like lions to the roaring slaughter
they did not stop to think they died instead
then shall the voice of liberty be mute?"
He spoke. And drank rapidly a glass of water
I taught a Civics class to home schooled children once and had the students shadow a candidate of their choice and listen to that person’s speeches and comments. A very intelligent girl took on a preacher turned politician running for office because her parents liked him. Within a few weeks of listening carefully to his words and looking at the people he associated with she said to me that she had to warn her parents NOT to vote for this man. I didn’t influence her. She got that from just listening to him carefully.