Things Christians Must Hate
Some mistakenly believe that Christians must not hate at all! To
a degree, they are right! Christians are not to be hostile, cruel, unkind or
rude to others. To do so, is to be hateful, which violates plain passages of
scripture (Eph. 4:32; 1 Cor. 13:4; Col. 3:12-14; 2 Pet. 1:7).
Webster’s dictionary defines the word hate in the noun form as: “(1) a: intense hostility and aversion usually deriving from fear, anger, or sense of injury; b: extreme dislike or antipathy. (2) An object of hatred.”
The verb form of the word is defined this way: “(1) To feel extreme enmity toward <hates his country's enemies> (2) To have a strong aversion to: find very distasteful <hated to have to meet strangers> <hate hypocrisy>; intransitive senses: to express or feel extreme enmity or active hostility.”
But, what must a Christian hate? Let us go to God's Word to find out! Consider these passages:
(1) “These six things doth the LORD hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto him: A proud look, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood, An heart that deviseth wicked imaginations, feet that be swift in running to mischief, A false witness that speaketh lies, and he that soweth discord among brethren” (Prov. 6:16-19). To be Godly, we must hate these seven things mentioned and cast them out of our own lives!
(2) The prophet Amos wrote, “Seek good, and not evil, that ye may live: and so the LORD, the God of hosts, shall be with you, as ye have spoken. Hate the evil, and love the good, and establish judgment in the gate: it may be that the LORD God of hosts will be gracious unto the remnant of Joseph” (Amos 5:14, 15).
(3) The Psalmist David wrote, “Through thy precepts I get understanding: therefore I hate every false way” (Psa. 119:104); “Therefore I esteem all thy precepts concerning all things to be right; and I hate every false way” (Psa. 119:128). The word of God forever establishes what is evil and what is good; what is right and what is wrong. Man is not the standard (cf. Isa. 55:8, 9).
(4) Concerning thoughts, the Psalmist wrote, “I hate vain thoughts: but thy law do I love” (Psa. 119:113). Let our thoughts be as Paul commanded where he said, “Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things” (Phil. 4:8).
(5) “I hate and abhor lying: but thy law do I love” (Psa.119:163). Of liars, the Apostle John wrote, “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death” (Rev. 21:8). Numerous New Testament passages condemn lying (cf. Acts 5:1-11; Jn 8:44; Rom. 1:25; Col. 3:9; Rev 22:15). Unfortunately, there are more lies told in the religious realm by false teachers than in any other real.
(6) “The fear of the LORD is to hate evil: pride, and arrogancy, and the evil way, and the froward (perverted-tgm) mouth, do I hate” (Prov. 8:13). Consider the parable of the proud Pharisee of Luke 18:9-14 (cf. Matt. 18:1-6). Peter wrote, “Likewise, ye younger, submit yourselves unto the elder. Yea, all of you be subject one to another, and be clothed with humility: for God resisteth the proud, and giveth grace to the humble. Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time: Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you” (1 Pet. 5:5-7). Consider also James’ teaching on the tongue in James chapter 3.
(7) “And let none of you imagine evil in your hearts against his neighbour; and love no false oath: for all these are things that I hate, saith the LORD” (Zech. 8:17). A Christian is to love his neighbor as Christ taught the lawyer in the parable of the good Samaritan (Lk. 10:25-37). Also, evil surmisings are condemned (cf. 1 Tim. 6:3, 4).
(8) “The foolish shall not stand in thy sight: thou hatest all workers of iniquity” (Psa. 5:5). Concerning the Son of God, the Hebrew writer wrote, “Thou hast loved righteousness, and hated iniquity; therefore God, even thy God, hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness above thy fellows” (Heb. 1:9). Iniquity is lawlessness! Sin is the transgression of God’s law (1 Jn. 3:4). All unrighteousness is sin (1 Jn. 5:17). Iniquity, includes any and all religious error (Matt. 7:21-23).
(9) Of our loved ones and our own selves, Jesus taught, “He that loveth his life shall lose it; and he that hateth his life in this world shall keep it unto life eternal” (Jn. 12:25). In Luke 14:26 Jesus also said, “If any man come to me, and hate not his father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and sisters, yea, and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple.” The word hate in these passages has the meaning, to love less. Hence, we must seek God first and lay aside our will and the will of those so dear to us (cf. Lk. 10:27)!
(10) To the Church at Ephesus, John the revelator wrote, “But this thou hast, that thou hatest the deeds of the Nicolaitanes, which I also hate” (Rev. 2:6). What ever the “deeds of the Nicolaitanes” were, the Apostle John revealed that the Lord hated their deeds as well! We must do only righteous deeds and shun all evil deeds (cf. 1 Cor. 5:1-3; Col. 3:17; Jas. 1:25; 1 Jno 3:18, 19). Let us “hate the evil and love the good,” as God does!
Conclusion: Now, can a Christian hate? Yes! Must a Christian hate certain things? Yea verily! We must hate all that the Lord hates and love all that He loves in order to be His disciples!