Note to Self: Hate Well

Begin by reading and reflecting on Proverbs 8:13.

Dear Self,

In all your longing to love as Christ loved, you sometimes forget that true love for one thing will, or at least should, produce a hatred for whatever stands against it. Do not neglect cultivating hatred, an intense hatred, for the right things. Authentic love and zeal for God will produce abhorrence for all that stands opposed to him and his purposes. Genuine love for your neighbor will produce within you antipathy toward all that robs him of his dignity or leads her away from God.

Do you hate pride and arrogance? Injustice and the way of evil? Hurtful speech? Do false gospels and false teachers create a holy hostility in you? Do you hate works-righteousness and the false promise of peace with God through performance? I hope you do.

And what about your own sin? Do you see it? Is it ever before your eyes? Do you really hate it for what it is, or do you simply dislike its unpleasant consequences? If you hate your sin only because of the pain it has caused you in this life, then your hatred stems from self-love and does not come from a burning love for God.

At times you have wondered why you are so complacent, unmoved. You have grown frustrated with your lack of progress in the faith. It may be because you lack true and balanced passion – love and hatred. One will move you to recoil from sin, and the other will move you to hold on to Jesus.

Note-to-self-ThornTaken from Chap.28 “Hate Well” (found in Part Three, “The Gospel and You”) in Note to Self: The Discipline of Preaching to Yourself by Joe Thorn (Crossway, 2011), pp.95-96.