Dec 7, 2006

Does God hate the sin, but love the sinner?

If God only hated the sin and not the sinner, why would He throw sinners into hell? It is God who demands Justice and He is justified at hating sin AND the sinner. God is love, but He also is Just and angry at sin.

John 3:36 Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life; whoever does not obey the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God remains on him.

Psalm 5:5 The boastful shall not stand before your eyes; you hate all evildoers.

Psalm 11:5
The LORD tests the righteous,but his soul hates the wicked and the one who loves violence.

Hosea 9:15
Every evil of theirs is in Gilgal; there I began to hate them. Because of the wickedness of their deeds I will drive them out of my house.I will love them no more;all their princes are rebels.

"It is everlasting wrath. It would be dreadful to suffer this fierceness and wrath of Almighty God one moment; but you must suffer it to all eternity. There will be no end to this exquisite horrible misery. When you look forward, you shall see a long for ever, a boundless duration before you, which will swallow up your thoughts, and amaze your soul; and you will absolutely despair of ever having any deliverance, any end, any mitigation, any rest at all. You will know certainly that you must wear out long ages, millions of millions of ages, in wrestling and conflicting with this almighty merciless vengeance; and then when you have so done, when so many ages have actually been spent by you in this manner, you will know that all is but a point to what remains. So that your punishment will indeed be infinite. Oh, who can express what the state of a soul in such circumstances is! All that we can possibly say about it, gives but a very feeble, faint representation of it; it is inexpressible and inconceivable: For "who knows the power of God's anger?" -Jonathan Edwards

11 comments:

Julianne said...

I definitely have my Scriptures that make me question things I have been taught most of my life. For instance, Proverbs 16:4 says, "The LORD has made everything for its own purpose, Even the wicked for the day of evil."

That verse has made me question that God created everybody with the hope of them being saved and loves everybody.

Sending you a hug sis, Julianne

Susan said...

It is an interesting topic and raises lots of questions. Many of my thoughts are different to yours and that's ok. I don't expect to fully know until I see Him.

God is certainly angry at sin and the pain and suffering that results but I think God's requirement for justice was fully met at Calvary. Only 20 verses before John 3:36 is John 3:16 "For God so loved the world ..." The wrath of God remains when a person has chosen not to accept God's provision. If a person has not accepted God's provision when they physcially die then they would not cope with God's heaven where He is worshipped forever. They have effectively chosen hell.

I struggle somewhat with the Jonathan Edwards quote. I think the devil, the beast and the false prophet will be tormented forever (Rev 20:10) but I think the second death means that those those names are not in the book of life will be annihilated - but I could be wrong.

1 Peter 1:2 "have been chosen according to the foreknowledge of God." I think God choose those who He knows will choose Him. For me choice is very important because true love is freely given.

Anyway just my few thoughts. I find it helpful hearing/reading other people's points of view. Makes me re-examine my own thoughts.

Samantha said...

Julianne- Amen! I love it when I find scripture that makes me think about what I've already been taught and then, come to find out, I was told something completely wrong!

(This happened a lot when I started questioning the Catholic church)

Samantha said...

Hi Susan-

Thank you for your thoughts!

You said: "I think the devil, the beast and the false prophet will be tormented forever (Rev 20:10) but I think the second death means that those those names are not in the book of life will be annihilated - but I could be wrong."

I appreciate your honesty and humility Susan. Instead of me telling you my opinion, here's some scripture to consider:

Matthew 13-38-42
The weeds are the sons of the evil one, and the enemy who sowed them is the devil. The harvest is the close of the age, and the reapers are angels. 40Just as the weeds are gathered and burned with fire, so will it be at the close of the age. The Son of Man will send his angels, and they will gather out of his kingdom all causes of sin and all law-breakers, and throw them into the fiery furnace. In that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.

Matthew 25: 41-46
Then he will say to those on his left, 'Depart from me, you cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels. For I was hungry and you gave me no food, I was thirsty and you gave me no drink, I was a stranger and you did not welcome me, naked and you did not clothe me, sick and in prison and you did not visit me.' Then they also will answer, saying, 'Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not minister to you?' Then he will answer them, saying, 'Truly, I say to you, as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to me.' And these will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life."

You mentioned that only the false prophet and the devil would be tormented forever:

Revelation 19:20
And the beast was captured, and with it the false prophet who in its presence had done the signs by which he deceived those who had received the mark of the beast and those who worshiped its image. These two were thrown alive into the lake of fire that burns with sulfur.

But...

Revelation 20:15
And if anyone's name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire.

Revelation 21:8
But as for the cowardly, the faithless, the detestable, as for murderers, the sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars, their portion will be in the lake that burns with fire and sulfur, which is the second death."

That is why hell is so scary. That is why we needed redemption. We weren't saved from just sin, we were saved from God's wrath which Jesus endured for us. People don't throw themselves into hell, God does. And He is perfectly Just in doing so. Sin is not only transgression of the Law, it is against our Creator. He is holy and perfect, where as we are filth. We cannot even do anything good without God (Isaiah 64:6, John 15:5)

You said: "For me choice is very important because true love is freely given."

This is a hard reality to come to terms with, as I struggled with the same belief. How can love be love if there was no choice on my part? These might help (at least, explain my position)

The Pleasures of God in Election
Election: It's blessedness

Susan, I hope you aren't taking what I am saying as offensive. I'm not trying to be mean or to preach at you, but I lived a very long time believing a truth that didn't exist. I wish someone had given me a bit more guidance. I may be wrong, you may be wrong, so I hope we can agree to keep our minds and hearts open to God's Truth...whatever it may be!

Samantha said...

Sorry, here are the links!
http://www.desiringgod.org/ResourceLibrary/Sermons/ByDate/1987/581_The_Pleasure_of_God_in_Election/
http://www.monergism.com/thethreshold/articles/topic/election.html

I messed up the html code. I can never quite figure that out...

Gina Burgess said...

Romans chapter 1 is a good example of how God reacts to those who choose the way of evil. He just gives them up. Paul says this three times. I think that is so interesting.

When God gives them up, His influence is no longer felt. This is when ultimate wickedness takes over. After that, there is no hope for them ever to be saved. That, to me, is the scariest of all.

Susan said...

I enjoyed reading that article by John Piper, ended up reading another one while I was there. I quite agreed that we are elected/chosen. It's just that I also think God uses His foreknowledge. Actually I don't suppose He could not use His foreknowledge.

I had previously read a quote by John Piper which I thought was most profound but apparently it was Jonathan Edwards who first said it, "God is most glorified in us when we are most satisfied in Him." I must see if I can get one of John Piper's books to read.

Btw I think the lake of fire and hell are two different things since death and hell are thrown into the lake of fire (Rev 20:14). So I think the Matthew verses are describing hell rather than the lake of fire - which seems to happen after the 1000 years. Not that it really matters because, as you say, pretty scary stuff.

And I do agree we need to keep our hearts and minds open to God's truth. It is nice to be able to 'chat' even though we see things a little differently.

amy said...

I like your blog. My husband and I used to live in the Twin Cities--we are now in LaCrosse, WI. I graduated from North Central University--a great college--you heard of it? Anyway, from one sister to another--may the Lord continue to bless your writings and as you seek Him--may you find your greatest joy in knowing Him. :)

Samantha said...

Thank you Amy! Your encouragement is appreciated.

2 Corinthians 4:5-6
For what we proclaim is not ourselves, but Jesus Christ as Lord, with ourselves as your servants for Jesus' sake. For God, who said, "Let light shine out of darkness," has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.
------------------------------

I know quite a few people who went and are still going to North Central University. Isn't that where Sarah Groves graduated from too?

Samantha said...

Hi Susan-

You're thoughts on foreknowledge is a popular view. But...it does have it's discrepancies. Let me see if I can post something about that topic :D

Thank you so much for your thoughts though! And if you are looking for a good Piper book, I'd recommend "Don't Waste your life"

I still have not read it, but everyone tells me it's wonderful. I'm still reading "The Pleasures of God"

amy said...

Sara Groves actually graduated from Evangel College but took some classes at North Central for songwriting--and shortly after that released her first CD--I guess you could say it all came together for her there. I was taking the same songwriting class Sara was and had the opportunity to meet her. She is super sweet and extremely real. Her music is powerful and authentic--not too many of those musicians around today. :) blessings!