Haters Gonna Hate

Haters Gonna Hate November 5, 2016

If you are making an impact on people’s lives, you will . . . (not might) . . . attract haters.

So if you don’t want any haters in your life, don’t speak, don’t write, don’t blog, don’t podcast . . . oh, and don’t breathe.

Haters are either fueled by jealousy, low self-esteem (which is trying to assert itself), or an inflated-ego (which has been bruised somehow and elicits bluster).

Every once in a while I’ll get a flaming email from a hater.

A few weeks ago, a man wrote me an email which included baseless accusations against a co-author of one of my books.

Of course, the man making the accusations doesn’t know the person they were accusing. They just read some slanderous smackdown on the Web which painted my co-author to be a combination of Freddie Krueger, David Koresh, and a certified warlock. And to this benighted soul’s shame, he naively swallowed it hook, link, and sinker. (Or hook, line, and sinker, if you prefer.)

(This man clearly never read one of my landmark posts, Don’t Believe Everything You Hear or Read.)

Anyway, my assistant sent him an indisputable refutation of the slanderous accusations against my co-author that shredded them into confetti. Aware of the claptrap, my co-author and friend refuted every accusation point-by-point years ago. So the false accusations that this man came across on the Web were not only old and outdated, but they had been discounted long ago.

Now get ready to be shocked. Even after reading the refutation proving that the allegations were untrue, here was this man’s response.

“I am very aware of their deception. [Name of my co-author] is a wolf in sheep clothing and I have no other reason to believe that either you and Frank Viola are naive or of the same stripe as [name of my co-author].”


In other words, “don’t confuse me with the facts. I’m going to hate Viola’s co-author — a man I do not know and have never spoken to. I don’t have the intellectual honesty and integrity to try to speak to or listen to him with an open mind and heart just as I would want if I were the one being falsely accused, and nothing will convince me otherwise.”

As someone who believes the Bible and the words of Jesus in Matthew 7 and Matthew 23, I fear for this man. He has no idea of the gravity of the sin he’s chosen to embrace and walk in.

The fact that human beings who profess to follow Jesus can behave in such sub-human ways staggers me.

So what’s my point?

Haters are gonna hate.


And if you are successful, they are going to emerge on your radar screen (or your inbox).

What can you do about it?

1. Ignore them.

2. If they start spewing their hatred and lies on your blog or social media pages, ban them.

3. If they are on your email list, remove them.

And then forgettttabbbbouuttit (yes, that’s one word).

Don’t give them another second’s thought. And never respond in kind. (If you’re a Jesus follower, you may want to offer a prayer for them and place them squarely in God’s hands.)

Do not allow them to drain any emotional energy from you. Because these people are designed to distract and discourage you from your mission. And for every hater, there are 50 – 100 people who love and appreciate you.

Now, someone may say, “but what about critics who should be heard?”

Haters are befuddled abusers and they are NOT the same as people with integrity who provide constructive criticism based on truth and accuracy. Not even close.

Go read my post 3 Kinds of Critics and How to Respond to Them for my thoughts on that specific topic.

This post isn’t complete without that other one. They work together.

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  • Jasmine

    Praise God awesome!

  • Gaynor

    Frank, thanks for this post. I have really struggled recently with the right response to two of my family members who persecute me for my faith (They are not Christians). Someone recently told me that “Hurt people hurt people,” which has helped me realize that, like you said, the root of haters is usually jealousy, judgment (according to the world), discontentment, etc. I’ve had to set some really tough boundaries with these two siblings, and these relationships are the hardest in my life. I am encouraged by your post to move on and not emotionally stay invested in my siblings who act consistently in a hateful way (not just to me, but in general). One thing that has gotten me through this is that Jesus redefines what family is–it’s those who hear and obey the word of God (Luke 8:21). I have a beautiful “family” with very healthy, loving relationships with my husband of 31 years, my adult daughters and their hubbies, and many others in Christ’s kingdom. For this, I feel blessed beyond what I deserve. This post truly propelled me to release my guilt and move on. It gave me freedom to stand for Jesus without guilt for broken relationships with haters in my life, although I still pray for restoration one day, Lord willing. Thanks, Frank, for your boldness and wisdom. GOD BLESS YOU! And I just got your book (Jesus Now) and will start it this week. Whoop whoop!

  • Leanne Golan

    Thanks for this relevant post. I have learned the hard way that haters are gonna hate no matter how hard you try to convince them otherwise. Sadly, they are usually coming from a place of hurt and offence rather than reason. Many of them have been hurt by an authority figure and we happen to be their random target. I have compassion for them, but I also think it’s wise to take the measures you’ve outlined. Most often, nothing constructive comes from debating with them. I offer a simple apology for our difference of opinion and move on, choosing to listen only to those who have proven their motive to build, not tear down my life and ministry.

  • Thanks Andy. Changed it.

  • Brrrrrranda!

    Haters gonna hate! Whoop! Whoop! (Had to say something 😉

  • Andy

    “Send a prayer their way”?

    Not to nitpick, but surely you meant “God’s way.”



  • Mr. SS

    Good stuff Frank, I like what you said in a message I listened to one time, “Don’t hate Participate.”

  • Frank, thank you for this post. Having come to a personal relationship with Jesus in my late thirties, I am a hater-target for a couple people from my past who don’t believe the change in me. I have done just what you suggest here. I have blocked emails, blocked social media accounts, and ignored them. I realize there is nothing I can say to change their minds and it’s ultimately not about me anyway. Thanks for reinforcing this for me!
    side note: cracking open Jesus Now today… looking forward to it.
    Peace be with you today.

  • Keith Fife

    You are absolutely correct with this post. I have met many people who will read something about someone they have never met and will take it for the truth without ever checking the “facts.” The one verse that came to my mind as I was reading your post is Titus 3:10-11 — “Warn a divisive person once, and then warn him a second time. After that, have nothing to do with him. (forgettttabbbbouuttit ). You may be sure that such a man is warped and sinful; he is self-condemned.” Great post!

  • John Campbell

    Great points Frank! As a follower of Jesus and a servant of His New Covenant,ministering with unveiled face to people on the streets, I too take some flak from others who confess Jesus with lips but then choose to accuse me of being to grace oriented. As you know there is only one Biblical accuser of the brethren. This is where leaning in to The Holy Spirit is helpful to me. Sometimes I just stop and pray with words of worship in front of the person. Other times, if I sense a heart open I will explain what exactly Jesus New Covenant blood is in proper context of scripture. Then other times I will give my testimony of how God my Savior, % 100 by grace, delivered me from a 12 year addiction to crack… Still others I will simply bless them graciously and walk away.
    From my perspective the biggest reason why so many ignore Christ’s priestly prayer in John 17 to be one with God and With each other is that the large majority of confessing Christians homogenize the old with the new covenant. When Jesus declared on the cross ” all is accomplished” then presented His precious blood in the heavenly sanctuary for our eternal redemption, He absorbed all the curses of the law of Moses (old covenant) and retained all the blessings of God, in Him,and our sin forgiven. Our Biblical accuser is certainly behind this clear lack of Biblical light on Christ’s new blood, new covenant we are born again into. Keep up the great work in Him!!

  • Cands

    Well said Frank – I enjoy that you speak the truth and make your points in a mature but also humourous way – so appreciated.
    I also needed to be reminded of this and have the whole haters-thing put into perspective again, which you’ve done well, thanks.
    And finally, yes – “forgettttabbbbouuttit” is most definitely one word!!

  • MB

    Just yesterday a picture of President Obama with a nasty comment appeared on one of my Facebook pages. I added a comment. My comment on the photo was “but…God still wants us to pray for those in authority….”. She was still so offended, she left the site, OK BY ME,