Wednesday, 10 November 2010

Go in peace, but not in pieces

There is a lot of hate in the world.

Unfortunately sometimes those carrying out hate crimes claim to be Christians.  Such as these people from Westboro Baptist Church who, according to their own website "In 1991... began conducting peaceful demonstrations opposing the fag lifestyle of soul-damning, nation-destroying filth."

The bible says that the fruit of the spirit  love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.

At the top of that list is love.  We should love, we must love, we are commanded to love. Again in Luke 10:27 Jesus says, "Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind’[c]; and, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself."

So is there any room for hate? Of course! We should hate sin (that is anything that displeases God. We should hate the sin in our lives and the sin in other peoples lives.  We should hate the devil, he is the enemy of all people - even those who worship him.  He is their enemy because he only wants the worst for them.  These things are easy to hate but what about people, should any person hate another person?

Adolf Hitler, Joseph Fritzl, Dr Shipman, Fred and Rose West, Myra Hindley... Are we allowed to hate these people? 

At what point is it ok to hate someone.  Does it depend on what they have done? Can we hate people who are not sorry for the bad things that they carried out.  Can we hate them when they are dead?

These are difficult emotional issues.  However, love is not an emotion it is a choice.  We must choose to love even when we don't feel like it.  Jesus again said, 'Anyone who loves me will obey my teaching.' He makes no reference to an emotional response.

With all that in mind is it possible to love everyone, is it even neccessary and, if it is, how on earth do we do it?


It's Wednesday which means some midweek music.  This song has a great message for us all I think.  It's by Casting Crowns who recently played Belfast. I couldn't go - boo!

(Thanks to Matt Bishop for the WBC link. Much obliged)

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