Loving to Hate

Scripture Reading — Proverbs 6:16-19

16 There are six things the LORD hates, seven that are detestable to him: 17 haughty eyes, a lying tongue, hands that shed innocent blood, 18 a heart that devises wicked schemes, feet that are quick to rush into evil, 19 a false witness who pours out lies and a man who stirs up dissension among brothers. — 

16 There are six things the LORD hates, seven that are detestable to him: 17 haughty eyes, a lying tongue, hands that shed innocent blood, 18 a heart that devises wicked schemes, feet that are quick to rush into evil, 19 a false witness who pours out lies and a man who stirs up dissension among brothers.

To fear the Lord is to hate evil ...

Proverbs 8:13

Is it all right to hate? Our gut response may be to say, "No! That's never OK!" But some things must be hated if we are to be God's loving people.

For example, we should hate racism-not only when we see it in others, but especially when we see evidence of it in ourselves. There is no way to transform racism; the only way to deal with it is to do away with it!

We should also hate crime and murder and poverty and life-stealing addictions. And what about pride, greed, envy, gluttony, anger, lust, and sloth? These are not called the seven deadly sins for nothing!

"Love is not just one of the affections, it is the first and chief affection, the strength of the others," writes Jonathan Edwards. "From love arises hatred of those things which are contrary to love or which oppose and frustrate us in those things in which we delight."

In other words, Edwards continues, "All other religious emotions will arise from such a dynamic, affectionate, and fervent love toward God. From it will come intense hatred or abhorrence of sin, a fear of it, and a dread of God's displeasure. Similarly ... a hatred of all that robs another of dignity, security, meaning, purposefulness, hope, and health"-accompanied by a deep desire to do something about it! "Hate what is evil; cling to what is good" (Romans 12:9).

Prayer

"Oh, how I love your law!" O Lord. "I gain understanding from your precepts; therefore I hate every wrong path." Guide me in the way of love, in Jesus, I pray. Amen.

 

Devotion topics: Life, Christian Life, Seeking God