He was talking about hatred, and the Bible's view of it. He talked about Cain and Able, and how Cain had hatred in his heart for his brother Able, which led him to kill his brother. So, he became the first murderer. Now, this brings us to 1 John 2:9-11 The one who says he is in the Light and yet hates his brother is in darkness until now. The one who loves his brother abides in the Light and there is no cause for stumbling in him. But the one who hates his brother is in darkness and walks in darkness, and does not know where he is going because the darkness has blinded his eyes.
Ok, so what does all that mean? Well, first you have to understand what it means when it talks about the Light and the darkness. To be in the Light is a reference to walking in the Holy Spirit, or with Jesus. Jesus is the Light (which is why it is capitolized), and this would refer also to being born again, or fully trusting Jesus to save you. Now, darkness is a reference to being without Christ, and being totally in sin. So, what these verses are saying is that if you hate your brother you are in darkness, and if you love your brother you are in the Light. I have known those verses for many years, and have always struggled with them to some extent. Christ tells us that in the eyes of God, hate and murder are one in the same. 1John 3:15 reminds us of this when it says that, "Everyone who hates his brother is a murderer; and you know that no murderer has eternal life abiding in Him." So, it is clear that to harbor any kind of hate in your mind whatsoever, makes you a murderer! It is also clear that no murderer can be walking in the Light or have eternal life? Wow, that pretty much condemns everyone doesn't it? Is there any person who has never had a hateful thought about another human being before? I know I'm guilty!
This is where it gets good....keep reading. This is where forgiveness comes in! If you have trusted in Christ as your savior, and you have the Spirit within you, then you are forgiven. Now, the confusion comes with the verses and their insistence that you cannot have eternal life if you have comitted this murdering offence of having hatred in your heart. But, here is something that I was reminded of today, that gave me a good reminder of God's forgiveness, and how it envelopes our sins. Think of David. NOw, if you are not all that familiar with David and his life, then here is a brief synopsis of the story that I will reference. The most familiar story of David is when he slayed Goliath with his sling, but what happened after that in his life, is a roller coaster of sin and grace and forgiveness. David became king of Israel, and was loved by his people. He developed a rather big head, let's say. Well, one day he was on the roof, and he saw a beautiful woman, who was also on the roof (his roof would have been taller then hers), and he began watching her. Now, of course, we know that he was lusting after her...the Bible is clear that she was very beautiful. So, not only did he lust after her, but he decided that he wanted her for his very own!! Now, Bathsheba was her name, and she was already taken, as was David. But, hey, I'm the king...I'll get what I want....right? So, David did something shocking (shocking because up until this point, it was clear that he was a man of God, a man who loved God). David, sent Bathsheba's husband Uriah off to war...and made it clear that he wanted him to not come back!! Stunning! He then took Bathsheba as his own wife! Wow, talk about murder and hatred (not to mention lust and greed, and adultery, all of which are clearly sins!!). So, Uriah is now dead, and Bathsheba belongs to David. But, David had a trusted advisor, a prophet of the Lord, who came to him, and reminded him that what he had done was very wrong in the eyes of the Lord!! David's eyes were opened to his sin, and he deeply repented of this sin. The consequence of this sin was the loss of a son that they had just had together. This was devastating to David, but he recognized that he needed to be punished, and he called out to God in repentance. And then David picked up and moved on with his life, trying to walk in the right way! Now, David would make some other mistakes, but every time, he cried out in repentence. God tells us in his word years after David's death, that David was a man after God's own Heart.
Think of it....an adulterer was a man after God's own heart. Adultery is something else that God is clear about in His word, that if you even lust after a woman in your heart, you are walking in darkness as an adulterer. David did not just stop at lusting, he became a full fledged adulterer. So, how did he end up becoming a man after God's own heart......repentance. Acknowledging his sin, accepting his consequences, the destruction of his son, and family. But, moving on from it, in repentance, and vowing to do what is right!
This adultery also caused him to become a murderer (a slippery slope is sin indeed), and yet still...he's a man after God's own heart! How?? Again, repentance, and a turning from his sin!!!
Do you realize what this means for us?? This means dear ones, that we can be adulterers, or murderers, or liars, or drunkards, or any other sin that keeps us in darkness, but we can still leave this world as a man or woman after God's own heart!!! Wow! What a thought! All we need to do, is repent from these sins, and to turn from them, and God is eager (yes, eager) to forgive!! If you have been an adulterer, or even lusted after someone in your heart, God wants to forgive! If you have been a murderer, or even had a hateful thought about someone, God wants to forgive! If you have any sin, none is too great, He wants to forgive!! And you know what else...after He forgives, He wants to bless you!! Can you imagine, after all that David did against God, that God would still bless him...but he did. After his repentence, Bathsheba became pregnant once again. This time with another bouncing baby boy....you may be familiar with him, his name was Solomon. Solomon, would later become the King, and be known is History as the wisest man that lived, and he was also the builder of the temple! God was not only eager to bless, but also to forgive!!
Praise God for his mercy, for his wanting to forgive us of our sins, and give us eternal life with him! No sin is too large for him, no amount of sin is too many for him. If we only acknowledge our sin to him and turn from it, than He is DYING to forgive us, and Bless us. In fact, He did die to forgive us, because when he sent Jesus to the Earth to die on the cross for us, this wiped away all our sin for eternity...and all it takes is acceptance to obtain it!!
If you have any questions about this, I would love to discuss it with you. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org, or leave a comment if you like. If you can't tell, I was excited to share this, so if you do read it, feel free to comment, if it blessed you or left you with questions!