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Why are You Hated?

“…you will be hated by all nations because of me.” Matthew 24:9 NIV

“I have given them your word and the world has hated them, for they are not of the world any more than I am of the world.” John 17:14 NIV
What stirs up this hatred Jesus said the world would have towards his followers? Oswald Chambers writes, “I have no business to stir up the hatred of the world through a domineering religious opinionativeness—that has nothing whatever to do with the spirit of Jesus.”* This is something I have been believing more and more but sadly, it is our “domineering religious opinionativeness” that is seen and hated most by those who do not follow Jesus.

Think about it! How much time do we expend trying to persuade non-Christians that homosexuality is wrong and that our laws must reflect that? In North America today, Christians are known far more for our religious opinionativeness than for anything else. How sad! This is not the gospel. This isn’t the good news that Jesus brought to earth. The good news is that God loves us! He loves the homosexual. He loves the abortionist. He loves the world. “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son….”

Then why might the world hate us, if not for our religious opinionativeness? Why are Christians hated in other parts of the world? Why are Christians imprisoned, tortured and killed in places like China and the Islamic nations? Is it because they are crying out against their fellow countrymen for breaking God’s laws? No! It is because they simply choose to believe in and follow Jesus and encourage others to do the same—not in loud, attention-getting pronouncements but in the quiet, living out of their lives as Jesus called us to do.

Chambers writes, “…when in all modesty I am standing for the honour of Jesus Christ and a crisis arises when the Spirit of God requires that I declare my otherworldliness, then I learn what Jesus meant when he said, men will hate you.”*

Father, I want to live my life for you, to bring honour to you and your son, Jesus, through your Holy Spirit. May my life reflect your love and holiness rather than my own, self-righteous declarations of others’ sin. Amen.

"The Moral Individual--II" in "Biblical Ethics" in The Complete Works of Oswald Chambers, page 100.


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Oh God
You surround me with your love,
with memories
of who you are
of what you've done
of promises you've made
of who I want to be
of who I am because of you.

You give me hope and joy,
peace and gratitude.
You convict me
and teach me
encourage me
and remind me
of what it means to follow you.

You listen to my prayers
and grant my requests
in your time.
You give me insight
and knowledge
and words to write
to share your presence
your goodness
your love
your admonition
with others.

You expand my love
to pray for friend and foe
near and far
family and stranger
people as pins on maps
clustered and scattered
who know you and reject you
for those in need
and those too full to need.

You draw me close
and then release me
to bring you close to others
to serve
and love
and give
all I have received.

You fill my heart with joy
that warms
and glows
and bursts
into laughter,
and even dance.

You wrap me in your arms
and tell me
"You are mine"
with intensity that burns
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