Thursday, May 19, 2022

Love It Or Hate It?

"If anyone comes to Me and does not hate his father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters, yes, and his own life also, he cannot be My disciple."
Luke 14:26 (NKJV)

Sometimes people say they hate a certain food, but that is really not the correct use of the word hate, and someone who says this simply means that they dislike, or would not eat, a certain thing.  The word hate means "extreme dislike or disgust, intense hostility and aversion".  To really hate something, it means you are completely against it, but it also often means that you are in favor of something else.  Most people who hate one thing would say they love something else that may be an opposite to the thing they say they hate.

In Luke 14:26, Jesus said that if people were going to follow Him and be His disciple, that they would have to "hate" their family and even their own life.  The word translated as "hate" in Luke 14:26 in the New King James Version means "to detest", with the implication of hatred.  When Jesus said a person should "hate" their family, and even their own life, was Jesus really saying that we had to have extreme disgust and even hostility towards our family and ourselves in order to follow Him?  That is hardly the case.

Jesus was not saying that His disciples had to be people who could not get along with, and who had to sever all ties to, their family and detest their own life to serve Him.  But what Jesus does expect is that we put Him and His will before our family, and even our own lives!  The contrast between how we value the will of God and following Jesus and the value we place on family, and even our own life, has to be as stark as the difference between love and hate.  If we love our own life more than we love Jesus, there is a problem.

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