He that is void of wisdom despiseth his neighbour: but a man of understanding holdeth his peace.
If there is one thing we have in abundance these days, it is the tendency towards despising our neighbor.
It is easy to despise things that we do not understand. It is easy to despise people who sin differently than we do. It is easy to despise those who we view as a threat to our values and way of life.
It is not always so easy to hear someone out and do our upmost to understand where they are coming from, even if we disagree. It is not always so easy to treat people as people, made in God’s image, and not as some foreign body that needs to be treated with spite and removed far away—especially when we feel threatened.
It is not so easy to remember that any good thing we have came from God, so any good thing our neighbor lacks can only be supplied by God. Why do we hate him then?
It is not so easy to remember that God is in control of all things, so if our neighbor hates us, this is His doing ultimately. “You would have no power over me unless the Father had give it.”
Love. Your. Neighbor.
“Great peace have they which love thy law, and nothing can offend them.”
It is an astonishing thing we have today within Christianity. There are so many “prophets” so called, but they sound nothing different from a right-wing non-believer. Why is that?
Some justify themselves using scripture, stating things like, “there is a time and season for all things.” A time to war, yes. However, we do not war as man does—with hatefulness, holier-than-thou attitudes, and with a heart full of vengeance—but by speaking the truth in a manner that seeks to open the blind eyes and deaf ears and to soften the hard hearts that are captive to sin.
Do not shove your beams into the eyes of another, or cause the ears to bleed with shrieking, or harden hearts further—hearts that are already damaged, deceived, and in darkness.
Go ahead. “Call down fire on the earth in the sight of man.” Go ahead and let “unclean spirits as frogs” come out of your mouth. All the while claiming to be God’s prophet. See where you wind up. *saracasm*
It is not easy to love as Jesus would have us to. It takes a wisdom of God that is foolishness to this world—a wisdom that means loving those who hate you, even if they kill you. It means speaking the truth and living the truth, even if the whole world is living a lie and attempts to hide their wicked deeds in darkness.
Why? Because you received the grace of God and salvation in Jesus Christ—and they have not—and what if by chance you might reach some by being an example of Jesus in this time?
You will not reach any by preaching to the choir. We do not need any more self-righteous Christians who hate those who are lost. We need more Christians who are willing to love those who hate them—and to love one another as we should, which is something many among the household of the faith neglect. We still fight among ourselves. How can we love our enemies?
We can hate what God hates but in a righteous manner—as one who is a sinner saved by grace, who has escaped the judgment of God, who will live eternally with Jesus in a righteous kingdom—not as one who takes the place of God, doing what only He should do.
God closes ears and this is right. God closes eyes and this is right. God hardens hearts and this is right. God executes vengeance and this is right.
We have no right, because we ARE NO BETTER than the neighbors who we hate.
Hold your peace as one who brings peace—not a peace that destroys, as the peace of the false christ, but a peace that rests in the goodness of God, the grace we received by Jesus, and the promises we hope in. Speak the truth, but in the right spirit.
There is never a time to take up the spirts of devils, nor of Satan, who does what only God has the right to do. Wait on Jesus. He will avenge us, and until that time, LOVE YOUR ENEMIES. This means rebuking sin, not calling evil good to please man. However, do so in meekness, hoping to save a few in Jesus Christ, not hoping to condemn.
God gives power, but we do not rightly interpret His power. We do not rightly use “knowledge of good and evil.” Satan is given power too, and he is corrupted by it. Jesus had power. What did He do with it? Did He kill or did He make alive? Did He save Himself or did He die to save the world? Just because you can do something, does not mean that you should. Jesus is our example, and just as He died and is victorious, just as He is granted authority and can righteously judge the earth and execute judgment, so shall we—once we die and are raised at His coming—and not before.
The Proverbs study is meant to consider present-day events from a Christian perspective. Please join me in this study; feel free to disagree, ask questions, and discuss below.