hatred stirsToday’s proverb is, at least in my estimation, one of the most profound, but unheeded truths in the Book of Proverbs—Proverbs 10:12.

Proverbs 10:12Hatred [attitude that detests, despises] stirreth up [awakens] strifes [discord; contention]: but love [the genuine, sincere love of a friend] covereth [conceals; hides; pass over] all sins [transgression; rebellion; guilt].”

My friend, hatred, not love, is the cause of strife and discord in our world. I have observed hatred, that spirit of Satan that despises and detests another; rise in the midst of marriages, families, friendships and churches.  I have seen that self-focused, narcissistic, jealous and resentful state of heart appear in the midst dressed in the garb of religious piety.Lack of love will find an excuse

After 35 years of ministry, I am appalled that strife and discord arises so easily within our homes and churches!  I witnessed those I love; those whom I had called brother and sister become antagonists and destroy friendships, families and fellowships by their gossip and slander seeded with hatred cloaked in piety.  What gives rise to strife and discord? Solomon identifies the sin—a lack of sincere love!  The apostle Peter wrote to Christians in the 1st century:

Love covers sin1 Peter 4:8 – “And above all things have fervent charity among yourselves: for charity shall cover [forgives; overlooks] the multitude of sins [personal offenses].”

Paul identified pride as the cause of envy, strife and railings in his letter to Timothy (1 Timothy 6:4).  John wrote concerning one named Diotrephes, that he was a cause of grief for the old apostle and a source of discord in the church.

3 John 1:9-10 I wrote unto the church: but Diotrephes, who loveth to have the preeminence [ambitious; striving to be first] among them, receiveth us not. 10  Wherefore, if I come, I will remember [put in remembrance; confront] his deeds [acts; works] which he doeth, prating against [talk; babbling] us with malicious words diotrephes[hurtful words; mischief; chatter]: and not content therewith, neither doth he himself receive the brethren [as guest], and forbiddeth [hinders; prevents] them that would, and casteth [expel; thrust out] them out of the church.”

I am not surprised that hatred stirs up strife.  I am surprise there is so little love among those who profess to be Christians and readily entertain and expose the failures of brothers and sisters in Christ.

Hatred reveals, what love conceals. Hatred exploits, what love ignores.

Copyright 2014 – Travis D. Smith