Psalm 5 - "For you are not a God who delights in wickedness; evil may not dwell with you. The boastful shall not stand before your eyes; you hate all evildoers. You destroy those who speak lies; the Lord abhors the bloodthirsty and deceitful man.
But I, through the abundance of your steadfast love, will enter your house." (my emphasis added)
There are a lot of daggers being thrown around lately, all deeply engraved with the words "love" and "hate". There's been a lot of fires lit with the wicks of tongues spitting profane acclamations as fuel for the forest set ablaze by opinions of groups and individuals aimed at making their desires known and upheld.
Attacks on the Christian way of thought have been constant, and one argument I continue to hear is this one: "How can you, Christian, disagree with what I say/do? God is LOVE. Nothing else. You therefore need to follow his lead and love others by toleration."
The argument rings with truth, but it's a faint ring overpowered with booms of pride and incomprehension.
While I was reading my bible today, Psalm 5 jumped out at me. And it spoke directly to this argument.
God is not just "LOVE", but "RIGHTEOUS" Love. Righteousness is a legal term-- "the quality of being morally right or justifiable." As the above passage demonstrates, God can both love and hate and still be a good God. Anyone can agree that it is good to "hate" evil - the confusion is in definitions of good and evil though. And for that:
"When you say there's evil in this world you assume there's good. When you assume there's good, you assume there's such a thing as a moral law on the basis of which to differentiate between good and evil. But if you assume a moral law, you must posit a moral Law Giver." - Ravi Zacharias
All good and evil must be measured against one another; if it isn't good it is evil. And, if there's a measurement to be done, there has to be a rule of measure that is absolute, otherwise the measurements mean nothing. ie: who's going to tell me how long an inch is if I have no absolute measurement to declare the length of an inch? The ruler in my hand is made up of 12 inches, yet without the boundary on each side of the ruler letting me know the distance of an inch contained, I have no way of telling someone the correct measurement of a foot. Therefore, the walk from my couch to the fridge and back to grab a beer might as well be 1000 miles.
If we assume there is such thing as good and evil, there has to be a moral absolute, and for that absolute to truly be absolute, there has to be a moral law giver that knows the true measurements of each. I have yet to find/hear of anyone on earth that can accomplish that, so:
I submit the God of the bible.
One thing to remember, the moral absolute implies an authority to declare "right" and "wrong". The one who knows 100% right and 100% wrong has the authority to tell others the same. Therefore, under that authority, If you are never declared wrong in your actions how will you ever learn to be right? I think we can all agree that none of us, or anyone we know/have known, has ever been 100% right. Thus, if God says something is wrong, he is in turn showing you what is right. And we can all agree that what is "right" is the "good" thing to do/be, thus God is proving himself to be loving while still hating the evil he is justly declaring wrong.
God IS love, which is extremely important and beautiful. BUT, conditionally, his love is righteous deeming evil to be evil, wrong to be wrong, right to be right, good to be good. If we try to separate God's righteousness from his love, we are in effect claiming to be the moral law giver and thusly exclaiming to know the 100% absolutes of both wrong and right/evil and good. I think we can agree, that's wrong.