How to Not Hate (by way of Dallas Willard)

I'm reading The Divine Conspiracy again. (Yes, Griffin, you may laugh now.) I read it in high school and I don't think I was terribly fond of it at that point, but I must have been impressed more than I realized, as I've been thinking about it a lot over the past year.


Here's a section that I read today and I really, really liked it.

When I go to New York City, I do not have to think about
not going to London or Atlanta. People do not meet me at the airport or station and exclaim over what a great thing I did in not going somewhere else. I took the steps to go to New York City, and that took care of everything.

Likewise, when I treasure those around me and see them as God's creatures designed for his eternal purposes, I do not make an additional point of not hating them or calling them twerps or fools. Not doing those things is simply part of the package. "He that loves has fulfilled the law," Paul said (Rom. 13:8). Really.

On the other hand, not going to London or Atlanta is a poor plan for going to New York. And not being wrongly angry and so on is a poor plan for treating people with love. It will not work. And, of course, Jesus never intended it to be such a plan. For all their necessity, goodness, and beauty, laws that deal only with actions, such as the Ten Commandments, simply cannot reach the human heart, the source of actions. "If a law had been given capable of bringing people to life," Paul said, "then righteousness would have come from that law" (Gal. 3:21). But law, for all its magnificence, cannot do that. Grateful relationship sustained with the masterful Christ certainly can.

We learn this in our discipleship to Christ.

Seek first the kingdom, and His righteousness...


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