I read a piece this week by Dr. Clay Jones of Biola University regarding sin. His article specifically talks about God commanding genocide in the Old Testament (See Deuteronomy 7 and the book of Joshua). God literally told Israel to wipe the Canaanites out. Every one of them. Women, men, boys, and girls. It seems a bit cruel doesn’t it? I thought God was a God of love? How could someone loving order so much destruction?
Jones’ article (click HERE to read it) describes the depth of sin that the Canaanites were involved in (adultery, idolatry, child sacrifice, and more). If we take a look around our world we see people involved in many of the same things as the ancient people (save, hopefully, for the child sacrifice). There are websites for cheaters to make connections. People of various faith backgrounds have statues in their homes that they either lean on for moral support or outright worship. This stuff is commonplace. In fact it’s so commonplace that when we see God’s judgement on a sinful people it can look as though God is being unfair. “Sure they were cheating on their spouse, but it happens all the time!”
The fact is God’s hates sin (Psalm 5, 11, 45; Heb 1:8). He hates it. It’s not that it makes Him sad. He doesn’t simply wish it wouldn’t happen. He HATES it. And the only way we’re ever going to begin to understand that is by starting to hate the sin in our lives as much as God does.
That’s a bold prayer, “God help me hate my sin.” But it’s one that I’ve been praying this week. God is faithful. I’m feeling the hatred building up. Unfortunately I have a lot to hate. And I’m feeling in a fresh way just how gracious God is to forgive me in spite of my sin.
Again, that’s a bold prayer. But give it a try. My prayer for you is that God would answer it.