Hate wrongdoing but love the wrongdoer

(While I was writing this blog post, my mind was being besieged by thoughts telling me that I shouldn’t be writing about hating sin. A few minutes after posting it, I picked up a book that I was reading last night and turned to where I had stopped. The second paragraph started with: “Those pursuing the spiritual way should train themselves to hate all uncontrolled desires until this hatred becomes habitual.” What are the statistical odds of that happening?)

When you’ve
Been wronged
Dare to wish
The wrongdoer well,
Not Hell.

Love people
Even when they do wrong,
But don’t love the wrongs
That they do.

If you love the sinner
Without hating the sin,
You’ll eventually be tempted
To approve and/or join in.

If you can’t be a friend of sinners without applauding or approving of their sins, then you don’t understand true friendship! We live in a culture that wants to debate the sin, not the sinner–to deny or justify wrongdoing, not to hold people accountable for it.

To get free from wrongdoing we need to train ourselves to hate the wrongs that we do so much that we openly confess them as sin. No human being can honestly offer a universal “not guilty” plea. People who deny their wrongdoing are desperately trying to convince themselves that they have no need of forgiveness.

Our human nature would rather justify our wrong behavior than to turn away from it. We’re all guilty of numerous wrongs, but’s easier to find dirt on other people than it is to hide the dirt we’ve wallowed in. Instead of clearing their conscience by confession and repentance, many people try to cancel it.

Other people’s sins are easier to spot than our own. Few people would gouge out their eyes, but many gouge out their conscience. Focusing on improper provocation empowers improper behavior.

The worst place to tolerate sin is in your own thoughts and behaviors. Wrongdoing often presents itself as justifiable–even as exciting. When we ignore our conscience, we’re easily ensnared by wrong.

If you can’t find something to like about the people you disagree with, then you’re not very creative. Hate wrongdoing but love the wrongdoer. Many people believe that a parent has the right to get angry when a child intentionally disobeys but deny that right to God.

When feelings and desires override reason, logic goes out the door. If you don’t think you need forgiveness, you don’t know yourself very well.

Corruption
Hides in the heart.
It rarely
Announces its presence
With a loud eruption.

The source of sin
Is self-addiction
And the refusal
Of God’s intervention.

The power of grace
Is strong enough
Not just to forgive sin
But to erase
Every trace.

The Bible knows
And can expose
Our faults.
Reading it blows
Out attempt
To hide them.

Photo by Maruxa Lomoljo Koren on Pexels.com

About Steve Simms

I like to look and think outside the box. In college I encountered Jesus Christ and I have been passionate about trying to get to know Him better ever since. My wife and I long to see the power and passion of the first Christ-followers come to life in our time. I have written a book about our experiences in non-traditional church, called, "Beyond Church: An Invitation To Experience The Lost Word Of The Bible--Ekklesia." If you need encouragement, search for: Elephants Encouraging The Room and/or check out my Amazon author page. Thank you!
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