Have you ever wondered about “loving the sinner but hating the sin?” I know that I have.
I've wondered what it really means to do that. And, boy, was I surprised to learn that the origin of that phrase actually has nothing to do with the sins of others. It actually had to do with loving ourselves as God loves us, in spite of the sin we see in our lives.
As I was reading this article by Praying Medic, I was reminded that, when asked about the sins of others, Jesus always directed the conversation back to the person asking the question.
In other words, I think He was saying, “Let me worry about them. Let's talk about you.”
Does that mean that we don't call sin what it is – “sin”?
Of course not!
But it also means that maybe we ought to spend more of our time growing into the image of Christ – becoming like Him. And learning how He expressed His love for those around him.
Because, in the end, every saint is also a sinner, saved by grace. Snatched out of death and brought to new, abundant life.
We have a choice to make. We can continue excusing our unloving treatment of sinners by telling ourselves it’s really their sin that we hate, or we can permit God to let us feel His love for them, which empowers us to love them the way He does.