“Love the Sinner, Hate the Sin”

God hates sin. Proverbs 6:16-19 gives us a list of things God hates, so don’t fall for the false logic that God is love and therefore cannot hate anything. God hates sin because it separates us from him. It deceives us and enslaves us. Sin blinds us to the truth. Sin is described in the Bible as putrefying sores (Isaiah 1:6), a heavy burden (Psalm 38:4), defiling filth (Titus 1:15; 2 Corinthians 7:1), a binding debt (Matthew 6:12-15), darkness (1 John 1:6) and a scarlet stain (Isaiah 1:18). We should hate sin for the same reasons that God hates sin. It separates us from God’s presence and ultimately leads to death (Romans 6:23). It is God’s desire for us to have not only eternal life but to live eternally in his presence.

Does the Bible say love the sinner?

We could start at John 3:16 and go on all day listing verses about God’s love. Some may argue, however, that God loves only his followers, those who choose Christ, the elect, the chosen, etc. Romans 5:8 tells us that “God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” God loves sinners. If he did not then none of us could be saved. So as before we should love the things God loves. But we also have direct commands about loving people. We are to love our neighbor as ourselves (Leviticus 19:18). The Parable of the Good Samaritan (Luke 10:25-37) is Jesus’ response to being ask “Who is my neighbor?” Jesus addresses anger, retaliation and even commands that we love our enemies in the Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 5). Jesus prayed while on the cross for those that were crucifying him (Luke 23:34) and we are instructed by Paul to have the same mind in us that Christ had (Philippians 2:5).

God hates sin; God loves sinners. We are called to the same.

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