John 15:19 Are You Loved Or Hated?

If you belong to the world, it would love you as its own. As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world. That is why the world hates you. John 15:19

People love to be loved. No one likes someone to hate them. In order for people to get that love, most people will do whatever it takes to please others.

When a person is hated, he often feels left out or separated from others. He will often look at himself and try to figure out what he is doing wrong to be hated and change.

Jesus pointed out to His followers that the world hates them because He had chosen them out of the world.

Although the world appeared to love Jesus for a short time, they quickly began to hate Him. The world hates Jesus because He sets a high standard of holy living. This standard goes against the world’s way of living.

Every believer, who is truly living for God, will be hated by the world as a whole. Those who are living mediocre lives for God, will be loved by the world. They live in sinful ways and accept others to live in sinful ways. They are not separate, set a part from the world.

Followers of Jesus will call sin for what it is…sin and will not compromise their standards. The world does not like that type of talk or living, it makes them feel uncomfortable.

As soon as the world begins to love a believer, one must begin to question his walk with God. How is it that the world loves him, when the world hates Jesus? This can be a test strip for how much a person is loving and serving God or serving self and the world.

Take not as to how much the world, those who refuse to believe in Jesus, loves you. Ask yourself how much you are being a witness to them of who Jesus is.

If you are living for God and speaking His words, the world is going to hate you. The only ones who will not hate you are those who choose to follow Jesus.

Your primary job is to be a witness to the world, not to be loved by the world. Do not turn away from being that witness, just because some, or many, do not love you.

Are you loved or hated by the world?

Today I pray that you will know Jesus as your Savior; that God will strengthen you to be separate from the world; that you will know God’s love; that you will live a holy life before God and the world; and that you will be a witness for Jesus.

Luke 16:15 God Knows The Heart

He said to them, “You are the ones who justify yourselves in the eyes of others, but God knows your hearts. What people value highly is detestable in God’s sight.” Luke 16:15

People will often break the laws or cheat the system, doing something that is normally seen as wrong. When they are confronted about it, many will try to give an acceptable excuse as to why they did it and should not be punished.

There are also many who do good things, but for selfish and wrong reasons.

After Jesus told a parable about loving money, the Pharisees sneered at Jesus. He pointed out that they were just justifying their false actions, but God knew their heart and that the things people were valuing, God was hating.

It is sadly common that many believers in the church, who have a sinful habit, will try to justify it as acceptable. Often these sinful habits are things of the heart, that can be acceptable if done if done with the right motive.

There is nothing sinful about having money, but it can become sinful to desire money above God and what He desires.

Some believers will praise the very same things that the world praises. Things such as wealth, prestige, property, looks, position, titles and more. While God can use these things, God does not see them as of high value as man does.

A believer can have any or all of these things and not sin, if he is using them for God’s glory and praise. He does not use them for selfish purposes. This is a matter of the heart, that only God can truly see and understand.

Every believer must check his heart in what he does and wants. These things must be guided by God’s heart, not his own or that of the world’s.

As a believer, you must be willing to allow God to examine your heart’s motives in your actions. Seek to know what God values highly and run after that. Going after anything else will fail and will be detestable to God.

God’s first goal for you is for you to be like Jesus. His next goal is for you to be His witness to make more people like Jesus. Everything that you think, say or do must follow after God’s goals for your life. Anything else will be found as disgusting to God.

Today I pray that you will know Jesus as your Savior; that you will have a heart after God’s heart; that you will desire what God desires; and that your motives of thoughts, words and actions will honor God.

Matthew 24:9 You Will Be Hated

Then you will be handed over to be persecuted and put to death, and you will be hated by all nations because of me. Matthew 24:9

Very few people like to be hated. Most people want to be liked. On every social media platform people strive to get more people to like and follow them. The more they get, the happier they are.

When a person is not liked or is directly hated, he will often wonder why it is that way. Most often people will think that there is something wrong with them, because they are hated.

Jesus gave a promise that in the end times, those who follow Him would be hated and persecuted.

Just as the world likes to be liked, many believers like to be liked. No one wants to be hated, so they will often do what it takes to be liked.

The sad part is that many believers will compromise their walk with God in order to be liked. They will choose to overlook sin. They will choose to participate in sin and even promote it. Many will water down the gospel message that people are to leave their life of sin and follow Jesus. Some will even say that there is more than one way to God.

When a believer is truly following hard after God, he will be hated by this world. Satan will paint a large target on him to try and destroy him.

Hatred and persecution will occur, no matter how nice of a person the believer is, because he goes against the ways and thoughts of this world. The believer does this because of Jesus. The world hates him because of what Jesus stands for.

Persecution is not a matter of ‘if’, but ‘when’. Following Jesus will bring it on.

You may not have had to suffer persecution yet, but it will come if you fully follow Jesus and are vocal about it. Do not be surprised when it occurs. They persecuted Jesus and they will persecute you.

Count it a joy when they hate you because of your belief in Jesus, because then you know you are most likely doing what God wants. Do not seek to be liked by this fallen world. Seek to be loved by God and have God be pleased with who you are and what you are doing for Him. God loves you regardless, but wants you to live for Him.

Today I pray that you will live by God’s holy standards; that you will not seek to please this world; that you will be a true witness of Jesus; that God will strengthen you in times of hatred and persecution; and that you will remain true and pure before God.

Matthew 10:22 Stand Firm

You will be hated by everyone because of me, but the one who stands firm to the end will be saved. Matthew 10:22

Very few people like to be hated, most people like to be liked. They want people to like them and will do just about anything to gain their favor and liking.

Watching posts on social media platforms, people get excited when the number of likes climbs higher and higher. It gives the impression that people really do like them. Yet, not everyone will like everyone. Some will hate others, regardless of what they do or don’t do.

As Jesus is sending the disciples out to be His witness, He tells them that they will be hated. Even though they are hated, they must stand firm in what they believe and are doing.

Even though nearly two thousand years have passed, people still hate true active believers. They hate because the message being proclaimed is offensive to the world. It tells the world there is a high standard to live by, that there is only one way to eternal life, that there is only one God, and that living in sin brings about death. People do not like to hear this.

Sadly, over the years, many believers and churches have changed the message to try and get people to like them. Often it is no longer about repentance, but feeling and looking good. This is not standing firm in what one believes and has been taught in God’s word.

Every believer needs to preach or speak the message Jesus taught. That message is that people need to repent of sins, change, and believe in and follow Jesus. When this is done, people will hate them, but it is what God desires. This is God’s will for every believer.

As a believer in and a follower of Jesus, you have the responsibility to share His message with this fallen world. Some will believe and follow Jesus, while many will hate you for it. Do not be surprised or hurt when they hate you, because they did the same to Jesus.

Do not give in to this world, but keep giving the message. Stand firm on the truth in God’s world and continue to live for God in His ways. As you stand firm, you will be saved in the end. With God you will win the battle.

Today I pray that you will know Jesus as your Savior; that you will be God’s true witness; that you will not fear the hatred of this world; that you will know God’s love for you; and that you will remain firm in God’s truth.

Deuteronomy 7:25 Destroy All Idols

The images of their gods you are to burn in the fire. Do not covet the silver and gold on them, and do not take it for yourselves, or you will be ensnared by it, for it is detestable to the LORD your God. Deuteronomy 7:25

As the Israelites were to go into the land of Canaan, they were to get rid of all of the inhabitants and their idols. They were not to even desire the silver and gold on the idols, but to destroy the idols completely. This was to be done because the idols would become a snare for them and God detested the idols.

As you go through life, God will bring you into new areas of life. These new areas are still a part of the world and it’s system. The world has and believes in things that are detestable to God. These are the new idols of the world.

Parts of the world still physically bow down to actual idols, but in many other places this is not done directly. The bowing down has changed to giving all their time, money and effort to have something. People “bow” down to cars, jobs, houses, vacations, positions, titles, and many other things in this life.

As a believer you must reject those things. The high paying position that someone has may be an idol and if God does not want you to have it, you must not even covet the money that comes from it, much less the position itself. This can be with a position or many other things. Any thing can become a snare in your life, pulling  you away from God.

Strive to place all your time, money and effort into seeking God and building His kingdom on this earth. Do not allow yourself to become ensnared by the idols of this world. Keep your focus on Jesus and His kingdom.

Is there any idol you need to reject or get rid of today?

Where is your focus and desire today?

I pray today that God will reveal to you any idols in your life; that God will give you strength to get rid of all idols; that you will reject any idols around you; that you will bow down God alone; and that you will strive to build His kingdom.