Tuesday, June 2, 2009
His Enemies, My Enemies
Psa 139:21 Do not I hate them, O LORD, that hate thee? and am not I grieved with those that rise up against thee?
Psa 139:22 I hate them with perfect hatred: I count them mine enemies.
Hate is a strong word. Aren't we all taught from the very earliest age not to hate? We also get the impression from the teaching and preaching that God is love and He has no need or patience for hatred.
Jesus told us to love our enemies, not to hate them.
Then we read verses like this and don't quite know what to do with them.
Perhaps a definition of the word might assist us? Nope, hate means hate and we all know exactly what it means.
You have to wade through 41 verses that employ the word ‘hate’ before you find the Lord hating anything. All the previous verses speak of the hatred man expresses toward God, believers or other people.
Finally we begin to see God hating evil works, false ways, vain thoughts and lying. Then we get into "the list" in Proverbs 6. This is the list of "things" the Lord hates.
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.
87 times the word hate is utilized in Scripture, hatred is used 18 times. Almost always the hatred comes from the direction of the wicked.
So what do we do with today's verses? Hating those that hate God, hating them with a perfect, or complete hatred?
This is rare, but I think we can glean that this perfect hatred is reserved for the completely unredeemable enemies of the Lord, oppressors of His people, slaughterers of the innocent. As the Lord exhibits love, grace, patience and mercy to those that hate Him, so should we, up until the point when they, without a conscience, oppress the weak and kill the innocent. When there is no longer hope for their redemption, when they are resolutely and irreversibly opposed to God and their eternal fate is sealed, hated MAY be the proper option from God's people.
However, we must be extremely careful in this area.