Thursday, April 3, 2014
Hate the sin, love the sinner?
This phrase came up in our men's study yesterday. I have heard it often, may have used it before, and sometimes it strikes me as an odd idea. Seperately they both seem true. God really hates it when we live in disobedience. But is that hatred or wrath really driven by a God who loves so fiercely that he knows our wrong choice will truly hurt us in a world He created. His hatred of sin led Him to cooperate in the sending of the Son to redeem the world, and the plan involved allowing the Son to be sucked into the vortex of man's hatred of man, man's love of power and love of violence, in order to break the pattern of sin and death. He clearly loves the sinner more than he hates the sin, for He became sin, to set us free.
And, in churchianity, we have a certain amount of time to rid ourselves of said sin or He will punish sinner with eternal hatred and seperation and torment. Sounds to me like God hates the sin and the sinner to carry out such a threat.
Some of our theologies would agree with the last statement.
Some would suggest that God loves the sinner but His own sense of justice insists he hate the sinner and punish him.
Some would suggest that the man's love of sin was totally in his power to stop, and thus God just let the thing play out.
What if God hates sin enough to deal with it, once for all, in principle, in Christ, through the cross?
Wht if God loves the sinner enough to exert all his power and love toward awakening the sinner to the burden that is bound to his back and the high cost of carrying it through his or her life.
What if God loves the sinner enough to love the sinner while the sinner is still enamored with the burden on his back, which he is convinced is adding something of value to his or her life.
What if God is able to save the man even through the fire that cuts the cords that bind the man to his burden of sin.
Just pondering Gospel questions in these days before Easter.