They are gossips, slanderers, haters of God, insolent, haughty, boastful, inventors of evil, disobedient to parents, foolish, faithless, heartless, ruthless. Romans 1:30
There was a popular expression a few years ago, “Haters gonna’ hate” which was and still is used to express apathy towards another's disapproval. It is a phrase that represents ones complete and total disregard of another's negative comment towards the original person. When I read the term “God-haters” in the passage noted above, the Lord gave me some insights as I studied. Abba inspired scripture about “ haters” thousands of years ago! But, it makes sense that HE has a different take on it! Read on! All 66 books of the Holy Bible are full of Scripture which demonstrates God’s love for us. From Genesis to Exodus, God is love! But there are also scriptures in which the verb usually translated “to hate” denotes having malicious feelings toward things or people. Many times, “hatred” in Scripture means the ill will felt by a human being and there is a wide range of meaning in expressing this hatred. It can mean anything from abhorrence to aversion, to avoidance and even the varying levels of ”perfect” or complete hatred toward the enemies of God.
Do I not hate them, O Lord, who hate You? And am I not grieved and do I not loathe those who rise up against You? I hate them with perfect hatred; they have become my enemies.
We don't like to think of God as "hating” anything. But He does! In the Old Testament “To hate” refers to varying levels of dislike toward someone or something. The verb is commonly used with God to denote his “hate” against actions and ideas. For example, God hates divorce (Mal. 2:16). God hates sin:
There are six things the Lord hates,
seven that are detestable to him:
a lying tongue,
hands that shed innocent blood,
a heart that devises wicked schemes,
feet that are quick to rush into evil,
a false witness who pours out lies
and a person who stirs up conflict in the community.
God also directs his hatred toward people: “I have loved Jacob, but Esau I have hated.” (Mal. 1:2 – 3). In context, the prophet is stressing the sovereign choice of God. It has nothing to do with the emotional feelings toward the two historical individuals. God is speaking of two nations: Israel (Jacob) and Edom (Esau).
Roman 1 speaks of “God-haters”. What does a God-hater look like? We need to know because there is a connection to idolatrous disobedience and its consequences and receiving the mercy of God through loving obedience (Deut. 5: 9-2). God-haters are described as:
Furthermore, just as they did not think it worthwhile to retain the knowledge of God, so God gave them over to a depraved mind, so that they do what ought not to be done. They have become filled with every kind of wickedness, evil, greed and depravity. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit and malice. They are gossips, slanderers, God-haters, insolent, arrogant and boastful; they invent ways of doing evil; they disobey their parents; they have no understanding [no discernment], no fidelity, no love [unforgiving], no mercy. Although they know God’s righteous decree that those who do such things deserve death, they not only continue to do these very things but also approve [applaud] of those who practice them,
In context: these "God-haters" are people who once knew God. They are among the “people of God”, not atheists! They allowed their mind to become darkened. It was a choice! How? By not glorifying Him, by being thankless. That is how one fails to "retain” him in their knowledge. Thankfulness helps to one practice His Presence to keep one's mind “stayed on Him", instead of getting caught up in one's own vain imaginations. That leads to a "darkened and foolish heart. Though such an one thinks he is wise, they are actually quite foolish Rom 1:22). God-haters! The fool says there IS no God! There ARE no consequences for sin. Next is the reprobate mind of the true haters of the Lord. What does THAT look like? About what you'd think! Because they have NO DISCERNMENT, God haters don't know where they are in the Spirit. Psalm 81:15 in Holman Bible says "Those who hate the
Lord would pretend submission to Him." The Amplified version of Romans 1:30 describes such people as “"hateful to and hating God". God-haters actions are hateful, “deserving of or arousing hate” by God NOT in the sense of intense emotion of dislike as we humans do, but in the sovereign choice of God in the plan of Salvation. We asked "What do God-haters LOOK like?" Well, we can recognize "God-haters" by their actions! Certainly God can be the recipient of hatred (opposition, abhorrence or avoidance) by God-haters.
To deem such people one haters of the Lord is a strong saying. But my Bible says:
4For it is impossible to bring back to repentance those who were once enlightened—those who have experienced the good things of heaven and shared in the Holy Spirit, 5who have tasted the goodness of the word of God and the power of the age to come— 6and who then turn away from God. It is impossible to bring such people back to repentance; by rejecting the Son of God, they themselves are nailing him to the cross once again and holding him up to public shame.
They know God's "righteous decree" they have "tasted the goodness of the Word of God"! , yet the turn away from it, and so from God because in the beginning was the Word, the word was WITH God, and the Word WAS God. God-haters "have no understanding or discernment" because they have no Word:
For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any double-edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart. Hebrew 4:12
If one turns away from the Word of God, he or she “hates” God in the sense of avoiding or having an aversion to Him. The God-hater is in a dangerous position in having “no Word” because when individuals or groups of people turn away from the principles of the Gospel, they are in a state of apostasy. Apostasy means to fall away from the truth. Therefore, an apostate is someone who has once believed and then rejected the truth of God. Apostasy is a rebellion against God because it is a rebellion against truth. God’s Word is truth! We must know the profile of the "haters of God" because we tend to think the apostates will come from the ranks of those who deny Christ outright. But, the "falling away" may well be in the chambers of the heart of the one who is a "God-hater". It is important to not be deceived nor self-deceived. Do you not know that there are people in “church” who think they are rapture ready and heaven bound though they are living their lives on their own terms? Holiness is still right! The Bible speaks of a great apostasy in the last days:
2 Thessalonians 2:3
Let no one deceive or beguile you in any way, for that day will not come except the apostasy comes first unless the predicted great falling away of those who have professed to be Christians has come.
Abba sees one who lives life on his or her own terms, rejecting the truth of God’s Word as “hating” him. Professing Christians! Caught up in the works of the flesh sitting in the church building, but not in the Body of Christ. “Depart from me I never knew you” are words none of us want to hear on that Great Day, but rather, “Well done my good and faithful servant”. The rejection of the Lord is evident in the fruit born in the "God-haters" lives as listed in Romans 1: The insolence, arrogance, mercilessness, and disloyalty. The thing is, because the Lord dwells in the born again Believer by His Spirit, the Believer is "hated”, too. In the fifteenth chapter of the Gospel of John, Jesus tells us, his disciples, "If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you." He then goes on to say, "If they hate me, they hate my Father." Haters of the Lord! The spirit in a God-hater does not like the Spirit in YOU! They don't even know why! Unable to discern even their own heart. There is something ABOUT you...,” they think. All the child of God can do is walk in love toward them, keep them on the altar of prayer, and apply the double-edged Word of God. Though some sit IN the church, pretenders in the pews, they are "God-haters". Deeply disobedient! Jesus taught, "If you love me, you will obey me." Period. Still, anything is possible to God! Because all the souls belong to him. It is not our place to decide who is or is not heaven-bound. Holy Scripture says those who do such works of the flesh shall not inherit the Kingdom of God (Gal. 5:21). To turn back after having known Him is to crucify the Lord afresh. God preserve us from the subtle and slippery slope of being a hater of the Lord! A little gossip here, a tad of slander there. A titch of arrogance and braggadocio...a soupcon of disobedience and unforgiveness. It is imperative that the one who belongs to God examine themselves and consider their ways in the light of the Word of God. The works of a God-hater according to Romans 1:28, has no place in a Spirit-filled Christian! Remember a little leaven leavens the whole lump! The "lump" could be an individual or a whole faith community. It is why haters of the Lord must be dealt with in the Body of Christ. The pretenders! The imposters! Such leaven/yeast rises and expands, causing damage. There is an impact in homes, families, congregations, churches. It is long past time to take authority. Love should compel "those who are spiritual" to shut down the gossip, not partake of the slander, to show mercy in judgment, and to be obedient to the Word of God. Call it out, because we are accountable! In Psalm 81, the Bible speaks of the urgency of the need for His people to listen and follow His ways that He might subdue the "haters of the Lord". He fights for us! Our part to play is to submit to God, not leaning to our own understanding. The polar opposite of the God hater. Christ commands us not to hate our enemies, but rather to love them (Matt. 5: 43 -44). This is a sure sign of discipleship. Such an empowering love flows from the Spirit of God! And it is because one is a God lover!!
One man of you shall put to flight a thousand, for it is the Lord your God Who fights for you, as He promised you. Be very watchful of yourselves, therefore, to love the Lord your God.
Thank God for watchfulness of ourselves! Shalomn!