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Hate the Sin, Love the Sinner

Daily Reading: 1 Kings 21

Scripture Focus: Ahab said to Elijah, “Have you found me, O my enemy?” He answered, “I have found you, because you have sold yourself to do what is evil in the sight of the Lord.” (1 Kings 21.20)

Devotional Thought: With the encouragement of his godless wife Jezebel, King Ahab had fallen back into sin, unable to resist the temptation of idolatry. But, the Lord was merciful. He instructed Elijah to find Ahab, to call him to repentance. This, in spite of the fact that “there was none who sold himself to do what was evil in the sight of the Lord like Ahab” (v. 25). The old maxim is true: "God hates the sin, but loves the sinner."

As believers, we are foreigners and exiles in this world (1 Peter 2:11). We are not of the world (John 17:16). Sin and evil are the natural enemies of those who are made righteous by faith in Christ. It is right for believers to be repulsed and saddened by the terrible evil that surrounds us. But, when we see the sinners as our enemies, we are missing our calling and commission from our Savior. Though the world may be against us, we must love people as Jesus does, desiring that all of his created children would come to know him.

Just as the Lord continued to pursue Ahab’s heart through Elijah, let us allow the Spirit to pursue others through us as well, so that they too may no longer be slaves to sin, but sons and heirs through God.


Prayer: "Lord, lay some soul upon my heart and love that soul through me. And may I humbly do my part to win that soul for thee." Amen. (Leon Tucker)

Psalm of the Day: Psalm 126.1-6

1 When the Lord restored the fortunes of Zion, we were like those who dream. 2 Then our mouth was filled with laughter, and our tongue with shouts of joy; then they said among the nations, “The Lord has done great things for them.” 3 The Lord has done great things for us; we are glad.

4 Restore our fortunes, O Lord, like streams in the Negeb! 5 Those who sow in tears shall reap with shouts of joy! 6 He who goes out weeping, bearing the seed for sowing, shall come home with shouts of joy, bringing his sheaves with him.

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