Loving the Hateful!
Verse for Today: Thursday, July 11, 2013
John 15:18 – If the world hates you, you know that it has hated Me before it has hated you.
Our world is filled with hatred and hate crimes. People hate each other based on wrong perceptions, misunderstandings, cultural angularities, religious fanaticism, political undercurrents, geographical and ethnic partisanship, ideological intricacies, jealousy and competition. But all of these come from their sinful self. God’s children fall a prey to bitter hatred because the enemy implants hatred in the hearts of people because of the truth that they stand for. If we do not recognize the root cause of such hatred, we might plunge ourselves into distress. The Lord Jesus Christ wants us to understand why there is hatred in this world and to fight it spiritually. We are hated because of our faith and the spiritual stand we take for Him. But if hatred comes because of our own faults, we must confess it to God and ask Him in prayer to make us more and more like Jesus. We ought to be hated only because of our relentless stand for His teachings and life style which are contrary to that of the world. In a selfish world, God wants us to live unselfishly for others so that God’s righteousness and truth will be accomplished in their lives. Jesus wants us to give ourselves for others and always seek their good. He has given us all things for us to expend for the spiritual well-being of those who do not know God personally. He has given us time, talents, training and treasures which can be used for the world to know the love of God. In spite of giving ourselves to others, they might hate us and that is when we ought to rejoice and be exceedingly glad. Let our query be, “What can we give to this world for Jesus’ sake?” Let us seek others’ spiritual welfare rather than be self-seeking and self-promoting. Let us preach and practice a way of life that is quite contrary to the selfish philosophy promoted by Satan and the world system. When we follow such a revolutionary philosophy which is against the world’s standards, either they will join us or find us an inconvenience and nuisance.
Dear friend, you must understand and accept the fact that you are in this world today to show God’s love to the people of this world who hate you because of your faith in Jesus. Let us recount all the blessings that are given to us to invest for this world to see and experience Jesus somehow. People hate us because of the enemy of our souls, but let us love them in return rather than retaliating or taking revenge. Let us joyfully suffer persecution, weather emotional, physical or social and use it all as opportunities to touch the lives of those who hate us for Jesus’ sake. He expects His disciples to live in this world and stand strong in His power to prove that we seek the salvation of their souls and not false victories in our battles with them. When the world hates, intimidates and rejects us, it is our opportunity to show Jesus’ love to them. When you and I experience the consequences of hateful atrocities committed against us, our response should be one of love in return. Remember, when we sustain hatred and rejection for the sake of the Lord and His Word, we are a fortunate and privileged people. We stand as a testimony for Jesus in this selfish world amidst its crooked ways. We might be suffering pain and misery because of hate crimes, but the grace of God demonstrated on the cross of Calvary will be showered upon us to endure such persecution with contentment. Let us go forward to suffer for the Lord in this world and thus respond to the persecution He endured for us on the cross.
Luke 6:27 – Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who ill-treat you.
Thought for Today
Love is the panacea to turn hatred into heavenly joy.
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