John 15:18-27: Healing Hatred
John the Baptist was imprisoned and when he got wind of what Jesus was doing, he sent his own disciples to ask, “Are you the One we’ve been expecting, or are we still waiting?” (MSG) This week we are given an opportunity to give our own testimony.
Jesus knows that once we decide to follow him, we will encounter hatred; and he also knows that we may be tempted to hate in return. So Jesus said, “If you find the godless world is hating you, remember it got its start hating me. If you lived on the world’s terms, the world would love you as one of its own. But since I picked you to live on God’s terms and no longer on the world’s terms, the world is going to hate you”. (MSG)
Jesus knows that we will need strategies to construct a life that reflects his teachings; and he also knows that we will struggle to follow in his Way.
“When that happens, remember this: Servants don’t get better treatment than their masters. If they beat on me, they will certainly beat on you. If they did what I told them, they will do what you tell them. (MSG)
Jesus knows that the logic of the world will challenge the wisdom of the world; and he also knows that we will need the wisdom that only God can provide.
Hate me, hate my Father—it’s all the same. If I hadn’t done what I have done among them, works no one has ever done, they wouldn’t be to blame. But they saw the God-signs and hated anyway, both me and my Father. Interesting—they have verified the truth of their own Scriptures where it is written, ‘They hated me for no good reason.’” (MSG)
Jesus knows that we will need a companion to console and guide us; and he also knows that this companion must bring us healing, truth and light.
“When the Friend I plan to send you from the Father comes – the Spirit of Truth issuing from the Father – he will confirm everything about me. You, too, from your side must give your confirming evidence, since you are in this with me from the start.” (MSG)
Jesus knows that love will transform the world; and he also knows that each of us has the capacity to heal the hatred we find in ourselves and in those around us. Let us consider how we might best join him in his work.
When we use the scripture link and drop-down menus to read other translations of these verses, we discover how much God wants to heal the world’s hatred.