No, Christianity isn’t “Hate Speech”

No, Christianity isn’t “Hate Speech” March 25, 2024

Philosopher, theologian, writer, and speaker Bill Watkins has 8 books, 30 study guides, and more than 150 articles, essays, and other kinds of writing to his cr

Bill Watkins of Literary Solutions

edit. One of his early books The New Absolutes, explains how ten beliefs once held to be true would be replaced by ten new beliefs. The book, published 25 years ago, is almost prophetic.

When we are faced with a culture that doesn’t just reject Christianity, but actually hates our faith, we need to stand tall in the saddle. This is exactly when we should be most confident because the world is threatened by our message of eternal truth, a love that changes lives, and freedom from the bondage of self-indulgence.

One new tool against Christianity is to call us “hateful,” simply because we have principles and moral stances that often are in contrast to the cultural tide. So I asked Bill what he thought our reaction should be when we are saddled with the “hate” label.

This is Part 2 of an exclusive interview with Bill Watkins


David Rupert: Nothing causes Christians to melt from the marketplace of ideas more than the “Hate” accusation. How can we combat this label?

Bill Watkins: “Hate” has become one of those words in our culture used to marginalize and disdain people and perspectives that typically counter in some way the reigning leftist ideology. It’s used along with other words used to secure the same effect—words such as racist, transphobic (and many other words ending with “phobic”), fascist, and white supremacist. If a person is hateful, then that person lacks compassion, is uncaring, unloving, and likely bigoted. This is the charge.

So how can we as Christians challenge it? First, we need to understand that t

Our Savior died on a cross not for lying but for truth-telling, not for acting cowardly but courageously, not for lack of caring but for caring so much that he gave his life for others. He was not shamed, but his executioners brought shame to themselves by killing an innocent man—the Son of God incarnate (Mark 15:39). We need to be like him, and stand up to anyone who seeks to malign us for the sake of what’s true and right.

Second, the hate label is wielded with the underlying assumption that the person who hates does not love or care about others. In other words, love and hate are opposites; they cannot co-exist. If one loves, one cannot hate. If one hates, one cannot love. From a Christian perspective, this view of hate and love is shallow and false, so we should reject it and present the truth to others. And the truth starts with a clear understanding of God and love.

Christianity teaches that God is love—not that he has love or sometimes loves but that he is love itself (1 John 4:7–8). And because God is unchangeable (James 1:17) and infinite (Job 11:7–11), so is his love. And yet this same God hates: he hates evil deeds, such as theft (Isaiah 61:8), hypocritical worship (1:13–15), idolatry (Deuteronomy 16:22), lying, murder, arrogance, and deception (Proverbs 6:16–19); and he hates the people who do evil (Psalm 5:4–6). And yet he also loves all human beings so much that he sacrificed his own Son, Jesus Christ, to bear our just punishment so we don’t have to if we put our faith in him (John 3:16–17; Romans 3:21–26).

So God loves and God hates, and he even loves those human beings he hates.AI Boy on a fence storm clouds

How can a God of love also hate? Because genuine love cares. Love cares about what’s true, good, and beautiful. And God cares about such things so much that he will do everything he can to uphold them while also going against—hating—that which opposes them. Only an uncaring “love” does not hate, and such a “love” is no love at all.

So if hate is not the opposite of love, what is? Indifference! Indifference is the attitude of not caring. Love expresses care for what it loves. Hate also expresses care by turning against what seeks to hurt or damage what it loves. But indifference does not love or hate. It simply shrugs its shoulders and goes on its way, caring for nothing.

Contrary, then, to those who assert we are haters, we should explain to them that love and hate go together (Romans 12:9). We hate all that deserves to be hated (e.g., Amos 5:15; Psalm 97:10; 119:104, 128; Hebrews 1:9), and we love all people even when they don’t deserve to be loved, when they do things or become the kind of people that we should rightfully hate (e.g., Psalm 26:4–5; 139:19–22; Proverbs 8:13; Luke 6:27–35). This is how God loves them too, even though those individuals who do evil hate him (John 3:16–20; 7:7). What we are not is indifferent. Indifference doesn’t care, but we Christians do care—in fact, we care so much that we hate anything that undermines or counters what is true, good, and beautiful.

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