Balancing Love and Hate
Read Psalm 97:1-12
A friend of mine likes to quote a beatitude that he has either invented or borrowed: "Blessed are the balanced." It's a good point. We can't easily walk unless we're balanced. When I was learning how to ride a bicycle, my parents put me on one and gave me a push, but I could not keep balanced. To roller skate, ice skate or ski, you've got to maintain balance.
This is also true of the Christian life. That's why the psalmist says, "You who love the Lord, hate evil!" (Psalms 97:10). There's a balance for you. Christians are not supposed to hate one another, but they are supposed to hate evil.
We can have one of several attitudes toward the evil in the world today. First, we can defend it. I don't see how Christians can do that, but there are those who do. There are even those who promote it. They're playing right into the hands of Satan. Or, we can close our eyes and ignore it, like the priest and the Levite in the parable of the Good Samaritan, who passed by on the other side. Or we can endure it and say, "Well, it's here, and I'll just grit my teeth and clench my fists and put up with it." But the Word of God says we should hate it and oppose it.
We hate evil because we love the Lord. If we love Him, we love the things He loves and hate the things He hates. This is also true in human relationships. When you love someone, you love the things he or she loves, and you want to share those things. When God judges evil, we want to be on His side. We don't want to be like Lot, who, though it grieved his soul, tolerated the evil in Sodom. Everything Lot lived for was burned up when Sodom went up in smoke (Gen. 19). "He preserves the souls of His saints; He delivers them out of the hand of the wicked." (Psalms 97:10) God is on our side. And if God is for us, who can be against us?
What is your attitude toward evil in the world? If you love the Lord, you cannot remain neutral. You must hate evil and oppose it, for it is dangerous to tolerate it. Ask God for the strength to take a stand against evil and be a witness to those who practice it.
[ Reference Scriptures ]
Psalm 97:1-12 [KJV]
1 The LORD reigneth; let the earth rejoice; let the multitude of isles be glad thereof.
2 Clouds and darkness are round about him: righteousness and judgment are the habitation of his throne.
3 A fire goeth before him, and burneth up his enemies round about.
4 His lightnings enlightened the world: the earth saw, and trembled.
5 The hills melted like wax at the presence of the LORD, at the presence of the Lord of the whole earth.
6 The heavens declare his righteousness, and all the people see his glory.
7 Confounded be all they that serve graven images, that boast themselves of idols: worship him, all ye gods.
8 Zion heard, and was glad; and the daughters of Judah rejoiced because of thy judgments, O LORD.
9 For thou, LORD, art high above all the earth: thou art exalted far above all gods.
10 Ye that love the LORD, hate evil: he preserveth the souls of his saints; he delivereth them out of the hand of the wicked.
11 Light is sown for the righteous, and gladness for the upright in heart.
12 Rejoice in the LORD, ye righteous; and give thanks at the remembrance of his holiness.
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