Where does it say that I have to like you in the word of God?
Is it possible to love someone who we do not like? Is it possible to forgive those who we do not like? Why would the answer to the questions be anything but a resounding YES!!!
Jesus called the religious leaders a brood of vipers, he referred to them as snakes. ~Matthew 12:34
He deemed them to be hypocrites: “He replied, Isaiah was right when he prophesied about you hypocrites; as it is written: ‘These people honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me.” ~Mark 7:6
Jesus indicted them with these words: “Jesus said to them, If God were your Father, you would love me, for I have come here from God. I have not come on my own; God sent me. Why is my language not clear to you? Because you are unable to hear what I say. You belong to your father, the devil, and you want to carry out your father’s desires. He was a murderer from the beginning, not holding to the truth, for there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies. Yet because I tell the truth, you do not believe me! Can any of you prove me guilty of sin? If I am telling the truth, why don’t you believe me? Whoever belongs to God hears what God says. The reason you do not hear is that you do not belong to God.” ~John 8:42-47
The question is DID HE LIKE THEM? I say probably not. The Word actually reveals that they angered Him at times. BUT DID HE LOVE THEM? Not only did He Love them… He graciously Forgave them. As the Scripture says, the religious leaders who’d seen with their own eyes the many wonders that He had done were at the foot of the Cross mocking Him and abusing Him. In the midst of their hateful behavior, Jesus said: “Father forgive them… ” ~Luke 23:34
YES YES YES He loved them… The final Word on Love can be found at the very same Cross. “For one will hardly die for a righteous man; though perhaps for the good man someone would dare even to die. But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” ~Romans 5:7-8
We should continue to forgive one another in gracious Love. We should not beat ourselves up when we are not socially compatible to others and we find that we just don’t like them. Jesus did not hang out and break bread with the religious leaders… yet He never ceased to love and forgive their self-righteous behavior and ignorance.
Yes there are those who deep in my heart I genuinely Love and sincerely dislike.
I would even venture to say that some folks feel the very same way about me. I continue to pray for God’s grace and mercy for them as well as me that we remain in harmony on this glorious scriptural truth:
“One Lord, One Faith, One Baptism” ~Ephesians 4:5