Taught to Hate

It wasn’t just Oscar Hammerstein and the musical South Pacific. When watching some of the worst of humanity on display, people often say things like, “You’re taught to hate; that doesn’t come naturally.” While the sentiment is sweet, it’s simply not true. The awful reality is that people are naturally bad, think bad things, and do bad things to each other. Kids don’t need to be sent to fighting camp or naughty school to learn how to do bad things. It comes naturally.

Love, however, needs to be taught. And that’s the whole point of Jesus and the Bible. God teaches us what Jesus did for us, because he loved us. He gave himself for us so we can be changed and find a new attitude and a new self. The only answer to the hatred that comes so naturally to humanity is love. It starts with God’s love at the cross, and it flows through his people to live in the new way of life they learned from God himself.

Don’t be surprised at the hatred. It’s natural. Instead, spread love. God’s love. It’s supernatural. And it changes people.

“That, however, is not the way of life you learned when you heard about Christ and were taught in him in accordance with the truth that is in Jesus. You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; to be made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness. Therefore each of you must put off falsehood and speak truthfully to your neighbor, for we are all members of one body. ‘In your anger do not sin’: Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry, and do not give the devil a foothold” (Ephesians 4:20-27).

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