Thursday, March 24, 2016

ending hate

And when Haman saw that Mordecai did not bow down or pay homage to him, Haman was filled with fury. But he disdained to lay hands on Mordecai alone. So, as they had made known to him the people of Mordecai, Haman sought to destroy all the Jews, the people of Mordecai, throughout the whole kingdom of Ahasuerus.
Esther 3:5-6

Haman is a jealous, bitter, hate filled rascist. He cannot stand one man and will seek to exterminate an entire race to get to the death of Mordecai. He is more than a villain, Haman is evil. He shows us the lengths to which raging hate will take our souls. It is an awful place, and sadly, history has shown humanity is frequently drunk with this hate. It is alarmingly alive in our world today.

I never thought that I'd see this kind of hate become a political movement in my own culture, but it seems to be doing so this election year. It is highly likely that some form of hate or jealousy will drive at least one political party in the USA this year. I am scared for my country and my culture because populist presidential candidates now grab the headlines and lead in the polls. One is a businessman who sounds like a poorly educated fascist spewing hate and a false patriotism. Another is a barely veiled communist preaching economic jealousy. A third leading candidate is a career pragmatic politician who is busy avoiding prosecution. Not a good lineup this season. Worst ever... in my opinion. My fear is that jealousy and hate are driving most of the electorate. Does this country ever need the gospel!

And a sovereign God gives hope over hate. At least the book of Esther tells us this well. God used His strategically positioned person, Queen Esther, to combat the evil genocidal plot of Haman, saving the Jews, and turning the Persian Empire away from doing a great evil. Esther willingly committed her life to God risking death ("if I perish, I perish" Esther 4:18) in order to be God's instrument of salvation and peace.

Her actions point to the gospel where only Jesus, as the Prince of Peace, has been God's sovereign choice to end our hate. And Jesus took all genocidal hate, all our hatred of God and of each other, upon Himself on the cross. Haters who repent of their evil, trust Him for salvation, and believe are forgiven and reborn into God's children. The Prince of Peace will rule over a peace-making church because God loves the world through His Son and through us as we proclaim the good news of peace, love, and salvation in Christ!

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