What is the Fruit of Forbearance?

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such there is no law. Galatians 5: 22-23 (NIV)

We have so much to learn about forbearance from our Heavenly Father. As much as the verse reminds us that there is no law against the fruit of the Spirit (aka practice them), it is really all about the Father. It is his nature of patience and longsuffering that we ought to bear.

A dictionary definition of forbearance is “refraining from the enforcement of something.” Synonyms include patience, longsuffering, tolerance, restraint, and self-control, among others. Depending on your version of the Bible, the verse may read patience or longsuffering, but I have used forbearance because it comes closer to what it means. The Cambridge Bible commentary states it is an “attribute of God, which means patience sustained under injuries and provocation.”

Forbearance, God’s Style

Love Covers Sin

This doesn’t mean that he turns a blind eye to what we have done. God is so holy that his eye cannot even look at sin. What it does mean that God in his divine forbearance passed over former sins until the time of Christ on earth. It means that God in his mercy provided the way out for our sins. Jesus, His Son bore the penalty so we wouldn’t have to. Jesus paid the price. “God demonstrated his love to us, that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” Romans 5:8. God has every right to punish us to the full for our sinful lives, but he has chosen to show mercy and love by sending us his Son to be our substitute. That is forbearance.

Forgiveness

Forbearance is a legal term where a lender refrains from exercising a legal right. It is used often with mortgages and other loans whereby enforced payment of a debt is either delayed or waived. An example of this is found in Matthew 18 when the king wanted his borrowers to pay back what they owed. One servant owed a considerable sum, so large he, his wife and children would have had to be sold into slavery to pay the debt. The servant begged for mercy and the king, “took pity on him, canceled the debt and let him go.” That is forbearance, forgiveness of a debt.

Desires That None Should Perish

Forbearance doesn’t mean slowness or weakness. But it does mean patience and longsuffering. “The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.” God’s love, his mercy, his kindness, his goodness, his forbearance means that he holds back from that final day of judgement so that we might have every opportunity to repent.

How Do We Forbear?

As followers of Christ, we are to “walk in the Light, as he is in the Light”. We are to imitate Christ, to have the nature of our Father. But what does that look like?

To finish the story on the servant who owed much, he was also an unmerciful and unforgiving servant for, even though he had been forgiven much, he did not forgive his fellow servants who owed him little. The king, when he heard the news, threw the unmerciful servant in prison. It was at this point he got what he deserved. We ought not to be like the unforgiving, unmerciful servant.

We are to exhibit mercy, forgiveness, long-suffering, forbearance, looking to our Heavenly Father and to the Lord Jesus Christ to follow their example. Forbearance also includes humility for we recognise our own sins and failures before God so we are not the first to judge and “cast stones” at those who wrong us. A humble person forgives easily. We exercise self-control and turn the other cheek rather than striking back. We love, for “love covers a multitude of sins”.

As I reflect on what is happening around us today, where everyone has rights and demands their rights at the expense of others, forbearance is a word we need to bring back into our vocabulary and use it in our everyday lives. We need to exercise it. We need to forgo some of our rights and take on our responsibilities as trustworthy children of God.

On a personal digression:

In Pakistan, where I live, might is right. That Toyota Hilux on the road has more might and rights than we do in our little Suzuki WagonR (aka cheap & small). We get cut off a lot! When it happens, we have learned to say, “They have rights, we have responsibilities, and our word is bigger than theirs.” Some might call that choosing forbearance as we forgo our rights and let others exercise their power and prestige. Whatever you might call it, it’s laughter and sanity in an insane world.

Do you have a forbearance story to tell?

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The Spirit’s Fruit of Peace

And I saw that all toil and all achievement spring from one person’s envy of another.
This too is meaningless, a chasing after the wind. (Ecclesiastes 4:4)

The common mantra is peace is found within us. Transcendentalist Ralph Waldo Emerson said, “Nobody can bring you peace but yourself.” Peace is a state of being word, but is it something we can actualize within ourselves through meditation, positive thinking, philanthropy, or any other self- produced action or thought we may engage in? What is the source of the fruit of peace and how do we develop it?

“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. Against such things there is no law.”

Galatians 5: 22-23

What is Peace?

Peace, we all want it.

There is no peace in some homes. A wife, subject to domestic violence, longs for peace in her home, peace where her husband doesn’t beat her anymore. A child aches for peace where mother and father don’t fight. A mother wishes her toddlers would give her some peace and quiet. Could she just have the house to herself for a day, or go out with girlfriends for coffee? All of us want peace.

Humankind clamours for world peace. We yearn for “peace on earth and goodwill towards men.” The UN is our biggest global peace agency. Organizations and committees are formed to develop peace talks and strategies so hopefully, someday we will have peace. Recently, world leaders brokered a peaceful economic normalization agreement between Kosovo and Serbia, but is that peace?

Peace begins at home, in the heart. The Hebrew word “Shalom” means peace. Derivatives of “Shalom” are “Salaam”, used by Christians in East Asia and “As salaam u-alaikum” used by Muslims throughout the world. Paul started his letters with words of “Grace and Peace”. What did Paul’s greetings of peace mean?

Reconciliation between man and God is the ultimate peace we can have. Without reconciliation with God, there can be no peace. We might have a peaceful world, a peaceful family, a peaceful life, but whether we have peace, or no peace, is determined by the relationship we have with God through Jesus Christ who is the Prince of Peace.

Where Does Peace Come From?

Jesus said, Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid. (John 14:27) So, not only is Jesus the real Joy-giver, he is also our Peace-giver. Without the Prince of Peace, there is no peace.  Jesus made peace for us between God and mankind through his blood. “For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross” (Colossians 1:19-20)

First, we need to be reconciled to God, then we will have inner peace. That folks is the beginning place for peace.

What Peace Isn’t

Some of us try to work out our salvation through good deeds. We bypass Jesus and believe our good works are going to get us to heaven. I live in a country where this belief is dominate in the religion. And all I see is strife. When we strive for a foot into heaven, we open the door to competitiveness, comparison, to jealousy, to strife, contention, and religious self-righteousness. Better that we simply rest in the finished work of Christ. It puts all men on equal ground, therefore, there is no striving because he completed it for us. In Christ we don’t have to fight anymore because we rest in him for our salvation.

What Does Peace Look Like?

At Peace with Troubles: People who have inner peace because of the finished work of Christ, are not troubled or afraid. That doesn’t mean we don’t have troubles, or we don’t ever worry or are afraid. We are human, but the general direction of our heart is at peace because we trust God for his protection and provisions for now and all eternity. Jesus said, “In this world, you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the word. (John 16:23)

All Are Respected and Equal: There is no enmity since Jesus “has destroyed the barrier, the dividing wall of hostility.” So we don’t have to divide ourselves into male vs. female, blacks vs. whites, Catholics vs. Protestants, etc. We are all equal in Christ Jesus. That doesn’t say we don’t recognize difference, but those differences do not divide us. We are united in Christ.

Live Peacefully With All Men: Because we have inner peace, we “love our enemies, do good to those who hate us, bless those who curse us and pray for those who mistreat us” (Luke 6: 27-28). We stand as peacemakers, seeking justice for those who are oppressed, downtrodden and rejected in society.

Inner peace doesn’t say that wars will end, in fact they will increase as we near the end of the age. But we can remain calm amid the storm. That is the peace that passes all understanding, a peace that the world doesn’t have.

What does peace look to you?

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The Fruit of Joy

“I have drunken deep of joy,
And I will taste no other wine tonight.”
― Percy Bysshe Shelley

What is joy? One definition says it is “a feeling of great pleasure and happiness”, and that may be true, but perhaps this definition more closely defines happiness. Happiness and joy are both feelings and are often confused for each other. But they are two quite different feelings. To define joy and happiness, it is best to look at what causes them. Happiness is the result of externals, circumstances, events, people, places, and things. These things make us happy. But what causes joy? The source of joy is also external, but it resides deep within us. When we have joy, it springs from the core of our being, our soul.

“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. Against such things there is no law.” Galatians 5: 22-23

What is the Source of Joy?

Theopedia states joy is “a state of mind and an orientation of the heart. It is a settled state of contentment and confidence and hope.” This sounds more like a spiritual quality rather than something we acquire from external entities or situations. It also sounds like it is long-lasting if not eternal. It is not a happy marriage, the birth of a child, a good job – those things make us happy, not necessarily joyful. There are people who have all these things and have no joy.

So where does joy come from? Jesus said, “I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener…No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me. I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.”

The source of joy is rooted in the vine. Joy is abiding in the vine. When we are rooted to the vine, we are confident that life will be fine regardless of circumstances. We can even have joy amid struggles and troubles because we know that God is in control, everything about our lives is derived from the vine. Jesus is the “the real joy-giver”.

How Do I Get Joy?

How do we get to know someone? We spend time with them, talk to them. Communication is so important in building relationships, getting to know the other person. So, if joy comes from knowing Jesus who is the joy-giver, then we need to spend time getting to know him. That means reading the Bible, pouring over the Gospels. It means praying to the Father and it means meditating, spending quiet times with God.

Joy comes from a right relationship with the Father through Jesus Christ. It is Jesus that gives us the right to be called children of God. Joy comes from believing that Jesus came to this earth to live and die and rise again for the forgiveness of sins. If we confess our sins, he is faithful to forgive us and that is what makes for a close relationship with the Father and living in joy.

What Does the Fruit of Joy Look Like?

Love is an action word. I can say I love you, but I can’t say I joy you. Joy is a state of being. It is something we have or don’t have. But joy has its expression in how we live our lives before God and before men.

Rick Warren described joy thus, “Joy is the settled assurance that God is in control of all details of my life, the quiet confidence that ultimately everything is going to be alright and the determined choice to praise God in ever situation.”

Have you ever met one of these joyful people? This is that someone who can look into the face of adversity and say, “I know God is in control and whatever happens, he cares for me.” That’s what joy looks like.

The joyful person isn’t always happy, they might even have moments of despair and depression. David certainly had his moments, but he often rebounded from the depths with an “I praise God” ending to his Psalm.

Joy finds its expression in love – to live for others rather than self. Joy says, “I will do my best under ever circumstance.” Joy gives occasion for generosity.

Joy can look like thankfulness, confidence, assurance, generosity, love for others and doing the best we know how.

How does the Fruit of Joy look to you?

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The Fruit of Love by Helen Khan

man and woman pose on a cross monument

The love I want to talk about today isn’t the 1955 film Love is a Many Splendored Thing kind, although it is needed in every relationship. And pure love is certainly multi-splendored. Jesus said that we will know a tree by its fruit. But to pull this analogy further, a tree can only produce a certain kind of fruit. The fruit doesn’t determine the tree, but the tree determines the fruit it bears.

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.” Galatians 5: 22-23

If that be true, the tree determines the fruit, what tree produces love?

Love is From God

We cannot love outside of God’s realm. We can only love because he first loved us. If he hadn’t shown us his love, we would be incapable of love. So for those outside of Christ, true agape love is impossible. Jesus said, “I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener…No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me. I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.

There we have it folks, unless we are rooted in Christ, we cannot bear fruit. We can’t bear the fruit of love. If you are fruitless, then maybe you want to anchor your branches in the vine who is Christ Jesus.

Now, none of us are perfect and we do have our bad days when not much fruit is falling from our branches. And bearing fruit takes time. A small tree (even one anchored in Christ) takes time to mature, blossom and produce fruit. Weak, immature branches cannot bear the weight of heavy fruit. It is the desire to bear fruit for God that is important. I am not saying because I don’t see love in your life today, you are not in Christ. I leave this for your self-examination.

Love, especially agape love is indeed a many splendored thing. There are so many facets to love that flows from God and channels through us. So what does the fruit of love look like?

Love for God

I heard a lady on a Christian program say that the fruit of love was what we directed towards other people. Somehow she missed saying that this fruit is also directed to God, maybe foremostly directed towards him. I believe that you can’t love without loving God first.

To love God is to know him. Without knowing him, how can you love him? To love God is to put him first. He is top priority above all else. We are commanded to love him with all our soul, mind and strength. Of course our love for him is seen in how we love others, but he is first. To love God is to praise him, thank him, fall down and worship him. And to love him is to desire him as the “deer pants for the waters, so our soul pants after him, our souls thirst for Him”, to paraphrase the Psalmist. We will spend time with him in prayer, reading His Word, communing with him. And we will obey him.

Love for Self

Proverbs 19: 8 tells us those who acquire wisdom love themselves. Where does wisdom come from? From God. The Psalmist in Psalm 139: 14 calls us to give thanks to God because we are wonderfully made, and for those who know God’s love, who love God have learned from him that we are beautiful, and our soul is aware of it. There is a love for self that is humble and rooted in God and that love is needed for a believer to bear much fruit.

Why did I put love for self before other loves? I believe that we can’t love others without loving ourselves first. When we are caught up in low-self-esteem and negative thoughts, turning our thoughts inward to the self, it is difficult to bear the fruit of love.

Love for the Church

A love relationship with the Father means we love our siblings, our brothers and sisters in Christ. We might not always agree, we might not always like them, but we are to love them. Constantly throughout scriptures, we are admonished to love one another. This is a direct commandment to love those in the church.

Love for Non-believers

Nor are we to neglect love for outsiders. Some believers withhold their friendship and love for non-believers, but in God’s kingdom there is no place for that. I believe a good summary of how we should treat non-believers is found in Luke 6:35-36, “But love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back. Then your reward will be great, and you will be children of the Most High, because he is kind to the ungrateful and wicked. Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful.”

So how are we to treat non-believers? With love, do good to them, lend to them, show kindness and mercy. It is okay to be friends with non-believers, just don’t conform to them – be in the world but not part of the world.

How splendid is this love that God calls us to bear! It is multi-splendored. This is the first fruit that is mentioned in Galatians 5: 22-23 and if we bear this fruit, the others will follow. I encourage you to love, first the Father and then yourself and others.

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Michael And The Devil (Part 3- The Bible The Devil Reads)

The Bible The Devil Reads

Michael And The Devil (Part 3- The Bible The Devil Reads)

0:00-2:00- Discusses the first two videos and their relevance
2:01-7:20- The Bible The Devil Reads

Author Michael Furlonger shares the importance of how we read the Bible. The Devil has no issue with you reading the Bible as long as your heart and mind remain ungodly.

Reading Matthew 4:1-11, Jesus is being tempted by the Devil. Every time the Devil says to do something, Jesus replies with Law (Deut. 8:3, 6:16; 6:13). More specifically, Michael points out that in Matthew 4:6, the Devil quotes scripture to Jesus Christ to get him to sin against God. This is why it’s so important to read scripture accurately.

Then the devil took him to the holy city and had him stand on the highest point of the temple. “If you are the Son of God,” he said, “throw yourself down. For it is written:
“‘He will command his angels concerning you,
    and they will lift you up in their hands,
    so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.’”
Jesus answered him, “It is also written: ‘Do not put the Lord your God to the test.’”

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Triumphal Entry


Have you ever come into the middle of a conversation, and it sounds really interesting, and you try to get what everyone is talking about, from the context?

I mean, first you are quiet and you just nod your head, “mmhhm, mmhhm,” and you hope no one has noticed you have just inserted yourself. Inside you are scrambling to piece it all together. But, at some point you realize there is just too much you don’t know, you have too few puzzle pieces for you to understand what’s going on.

I think that is how we hear the story of Jesus’ triumphal entry into Jerusalem. We try to get why this event is so momentous it shows up in all four gospels as the commencement of Passion Week. But, there is just too much important background information that is missing for us to really grasp the importance—and symbology—of what was happening in this scene.

First, we will look at the passage, then I am going to tell you four stories, so you will have all you need to understand what is going on. Then we will go back to the passage and piece it all together.

(There was something going on with my microphone, so throughout this talk you will hear glitches. Hopefully, the talk itself will overcome that minor annoyance)

Triumphal Entry, Mark 11:1-11
Grace and Peace, Joanne

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The Gospel Through The Law

Michael Furlonger Shares The Gospel Through The Old Testament Law

The biggest questions that I come across is, “What do I do after I accept faith in Jesus Christ?” It’s a good question. After all, if we are “saved by grace through faith,” what do I do with everyday problems?

Is my porn addiction under the guise of grace? No, it’s not. Is my swearing covered under the guise of grace? No, it’s not. Is my disrespect for my parents, my spouse and my boss covered by the guise of grace? No. It. Is. Not.

You never recognize how bad something is until you are free of it. I never knew how crippling pornography was until I tasted the freedom that godly living provided. How isolating this sin was to me.

I never knew how disrespect hindered me from making genuine connections until I was free of it.

 Taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the one who takes refuge in him. (Psalm 34:8)
First we taste, and then we see.

Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death? (Romans 7:24)

Did I just strike a nerve? You may be freed from an addiction of pornography or disrespect or swearing, but find yourself still drawn to sexual thoughts, anger, bad language. After Apostle Paul asks, “Who will save me from this body that is subject to death,” that is ‘subject to sin’, he says,

Thanks be to God, who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord! (Romans 7:25)

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The Widow’s Mite


In the passage that comes before this one, Mark talked about a scribe who had asked Jesus about the greatest commandment. And he was impressed with Jesus’ answer.

Jesus was also pleased. He told the scribe he was very close to entering the kingdom of heaven. With such a warm endorsement from a scribe, this was a rare teachable moment. The right moment, in today’s passage, for Jesus to talk about Messiah. And to teach His disciples the difference between a false reading, and a true reading of scripture.

In this half-hour video, I’ll give a talk that falls into three divisions:

I   Christ for the World, Mark 12:35-37

II  Court of the Women, Mark 12:38-40

III Coins of the Widow, Mark 12:42-44

At the end of this teachable moment Jesus had with His disciples, you and I will learn that the earth is the Lord’s, and everything in it. 

It is God’s pleasure to give to us. Then, real lovers of God, worship Him by joyfully sharing His spiritual and material wealth with others. In this way, they uphold the receiver’s dignity and deflects attention from the giver

What do you and I have that we can now see God is calling us to share with someone else, as a matter of generous love towards God Himself? This kind of sharing ends up making all of us richer.


The Widow’s Mite
Mark 12:35-44
Grace and Peace, Joanne YouTube Channel


[§Coins in hand | Royce Bair https://www.flickr.com/photos/ironrodart/, flickr, CC BY-NC-ND 2.0 https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/2.0/]

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Render Unto Caesar

Give to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s.

MARK 12:17 (NIV)

Money does have its proper place.

Yet, first century Christians continued to struggle and wrestle with this very difficult issue, so both Peter and Paul helped them by explaining Jesus’ teaching. Peter said, “For the Lord’s sake accept the authority of every human institution.” Paul summed it up like this:

Believers render to all what is due them

In fact, the whole verse says,


Render to all what is due them: taxes to whom taxes are due, respect to whom respect is due, fear to whom fear is due, and honor to whom honor is due.”

Romans 13:7 (NIV)


Every believer has a dual citizenship: in the country you live in and in the kingdom of God.  Even when our government does not govern the way we feel is wise, or good, or even honest, it still regulates and stems crime, and promotes the public welfare.

You and I are obligated to pay our taxes, to be mindful of the laws and rules we are called to uphold, and to be involved in the process of public policy making by voting.

This is rendering unto Caesar what is Caesar’s.

Jesus Himself paid His temple tax even though He was Lord of the temple and Lord of the Sabbath. We also have responsibilities to our families, and to our work.  We are to be people of integrity, being honest in our labors, doing what is right, even at personal cost, even when we do not always agree with those who are in authority over us. God requires us to do what is right.

Jesus gave a great answer, really.

BUT

That’s not what left the Sanhedrin’s delegation drop-jawed—‘utterly amazed,’ as Mark described them.

What took their breath away is what Jesus said in-between the lines. Give a listen, and find out how . . .

Render Unto Caesar
At Grace and Peace, Joanne


[Roman Coins | The Portable Antiquities Scheme/ The Trustees of the British Museum / CC BY-SA (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0) | •Tiberius Coin | cgb / CC BY-SA (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)]

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Is Righteous Hatred an Oxymoron? by Helen Khan

“Oh that you would slay the wicked, O God! They speak against you with malicious intent; your enemies take your name in vain. Do I not hate those who hate you, O Lord? And do I not loath those who rise up against you? I hate them with complete hatred; I count them my enemies. Search me, O God, and know my heart! Try mean and know my thoughts! And see if there be any grievous way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.” Psalm 139: 19-24

I have spent the last number of months moving through Psalm 139, sharing how precious we are to God; how he loves us and created us, a wonderous creation. I have shared the precious thoughts God holds for those he has made. Then, I come up against Psalm 139: 19-24. What happened here? We have moved from pure love to hate, or so it seems. Is this some sort of contradiction?

Protective Love

We have a Czechoslovakian Wolfdog. With us he is warm, friendly, funny, and just a loving dog. We have had him since a pup, and he thinks I am his mommy. We have a loving relationship. But his loyalty also means he is a very protective guard dog. In contrast, if anyone who is not a member of our household comes too close to his mommy, he is upset; ferociously upset. Maybe he even hates.

The first eighteen verses of the Psalm are a major love affair between God and his creation. By now the Psalmist has fallen helplessly in love with God who loves him and thinks about him intimately, all the time. Up to this point it has been just God and him. He now turns his eyes off God and onto the world around him. There he sees evil men who hate God. Therefore, furious indignation ignites David. He uses strong words to these godless evildoers as he stands up to defend the God who loves him.

Is it Okay to Hate?

And he hates what God hates. The intimate relationship between him and God has been intense. He has come to know God, personally. He knows God hates evil and so he too hates it, with righteous hatred.

We have become averse to the word hate. We perceive it is always bad to hate. But sometimes it is okay to hate, it is even the righteous thing to do. We are to hate evil, passionately hate it. When we see evil we ought to pray that God will help those under its evil clutches escape. When we see human trafficking, racism, murder of the innocent, misogyny, child slavery, oppression – the list goes on; it is okay to hate. It is called a righteous hatred. We hate the evil and stand against it and side with the victim and fallen. This hatred is far different than when we lash out at the closest person to us because we had a bad day at the office. It is different that the indication we feel when we are slighted or suffer a minor offence. That is plain old hatred and maybe we need to learn tolerance and forgiveness.

So self-hate towards ourselves, hate towards others for unrighteous reasons is not hate that is acceptable, either by God or in society. It is unrighteous hate. We need to develop a hatred that parallels God’s hatred.

When we think of God’s hatred, we must remember that although God hates evil and evildoers, he still sent Jesus Christ to this world to reconcile us back to Him. “For God demonstrated his love to us, while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” (Romans 5:8) Are we capable of that kind of righteous hatred while loving ultimately?

Fearful Self-Reflection

The Psalmist is not just some self-righteous snob. He is not arrogant for he recognises that he could also succumb to adopting an evil mindset or acting against God and his creation. Thus, he calls out to God and says, (my words); Lord God, I could fall prey to that too. I pray that you, God, will search my heart and if I have any hint of evil in me, lead me away from it, lead me to the way everlasting.

The Psalmist had a realistic expectation of what his body and mind can do. He knows that all have fallen short of the Glory of God. He knows he needs help from God lest he too become a godless hater.

All scripture is written for our benefit. Our takeaway today is that we, like God, should hate sin, love righteousness, and love the God who loves us.

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