I’m not sure if we hate sin as much as we should.
Well, we do hate some sin, and we hate it with a passion. It makes our blood boil.
We hate that, and we should. It’s been all over the news lately, and I’m glad to see the moral outrage. Maybe America still has a conscience.
And we hate other sins too.
We hate adultery when it breaks up a good friend’s marriage.
We hate drunkenness when it destroys someone’s life.
We hate gossip when people are spreading stuff about us or our kids.
In fact, I’m really good at hating sin in other people. For some reason my moral vision is so clear when I look at your life.
Not so much.
My gossip is justified because I’m telling only a couple of folks, and my intentions are good, of course.
Anger? I find it quite silly when I see people getting angry over the most ridiculous things, but mine is almost always justified.
Self-pity? Impatience? Selfishness?
It’s so sad to see these sins in others, isn’t it? I wish I could help them take their eyes off of themselves and put them on the Lord.
But my own self-pity? Justified.
My impatience? Excusable.
My selfishness? Quite reasonable.
I think this is one of the most dangerous things about sin. It’s self-deluding.
Satan doesn’t care if we hate sin, as long as we don’t hate it in ourselves.
He loves self-righteousness, and he’s thrilled when I shake my head at the sins of people I know.
These familiar words from Jesus need to fill our hearts every day:
Why do you see the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, “Let me take the speck out of your eye,” when there is the log in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s eye (Matthew 7:3-5).
When you pray today, ask God something like this:
Father, show me my sins, and help me despise them. Help me to see them as you see them. Stir up within me an intense hatred for everything that’s contrary to your will, especially the sins in my own heart. Please forgive me of self-righteousness, of hypercriticism, of speck-hunting, and take this log out of my eye. In the name of the One who died for my sins, Amen.