“How much must you hate me?”
That question came from an atheist to Christians who refuse share with him the horrors of hell and the blessings of heaven.
What is true hatred? What is the most hateful thing a Christian could do?
The owner of a patent for a life-saving medicine was recently criticized for sky-rocketing the cost of the pill by 7,500 percent! That greedy CEO effectively said, “I will only save the lives of those who can afford it,” loving money more than people. His greed led him to virtual hatred of those who desperately need that medicine. His puny excuse that the gouging pays for “research” does little to help those whose poverty condemns them to death because they cannot afford the cure.
Do I hate people so much that I refuse to tell people how to gain heaven and avoid hell? I may not be greedy like the CEO but do I “love” the luxury of being politically correct so much that I put the price of salvation so high that I keep silent about heaven and hell?
I have an orientation to sin. You might say I was born that way. By my nature, I am a naturally born sinner. But someone showed me years ago that I not only could be forgiven but that I could be delivered!
That person was my mother.
She shared with me a book that showed me that our lives were like a garden overtaken by weeds. True, I had a few good flowers as a remnant of the garden’s original purpose, but without a Gardener, weeds had overtaken the garden and my life was not the beautiful garden that He had intended it to be. Once the Gardener comes in, He will take away the sinful weeds of our lives. I distinctly remember a picture in the book which showed that even after the Gardener takes over the garden, sinful weeds will still creep back in. Yet He would be there to give order to the good plants and flowers and take away the bad weeds which would otherwise again overtake the garden.
But what if my mother “loved” so much that she told me I should enjoy the garden with thorns and thistles and weeds. My garden of beautiful plants would instead be garish brier patch!
It would be like her “loving” me so much that she only told me of the pleasures of playing in the street without warning me about cars which could kill me. What if I was only told of the wonderful rose bush, but not told about the poison ivy intertwined and the painful thorns and the wasp nest hidden therein?
When I was in middle school, a friend sold me a switchblade at school. Another taught me to smoke. Another gave me pornographic pictures. Did those friends love me? A principal found out about the switchblade and took it from me and actually had the gall to punish me for having it! What a hater he was!
What if that principal had simply said, “boys will be boys,” and let me continue to brandish my switchblade, inhale cancerous toxins and degrade the bodies of others to merely objects of sensual exploitations? Would that be love?
How much do I hate you?
I hate you so much that I will not tell you about God’s definition of sin and its earthly consequences and eternal penalties.
I hate you so much that I refuse to tell you of God’s grace that can deliver us from our sinful addictions and carnal orientations.
I hate you so much that I will be silent about God’s ongoing forgiveness, yes, even after salvation when those weeds of sin infiltrate back into your life.
I hate you so much that I will not offend you by telling you that I too struggle with sin. I will keep my pharmaceutical cures to myself, or will only sell it to you at great cost against my luxurious laziness. Until you can afford my cost of silence, I will live in the riches of political correctness and love you so much by encouraging you to embrace, accept and encourage you to relish your garden of weeds. I will not lower the costly cure for your disease of sin.
I will love you to hell.