In our day and age it doesn’t matter much—pick a side, be outraged by something. Can we call this what it is? Hatred. We hate one another. This is the conclusion I came to in reading through Proverbs 10:12. I also found much help by Charles Bridges’ commentary on Proverbs.
Are you a Democrat? A Republican? Something in between?
Are you a Calvinist? An Arminian? Or some hybrid of both of them?
Are you a social justice warrior? Are you one who believes social justice issues are going a bit too far? Or are you confused and not really sure where you belong?
Do you wear Nike or burn them?
I could go on and on. Pick your debate. Pick your side. It might be something that actually matters or it could even be trifling nonsense. In our day and age it doesn’t matter much—pick a side, be outraged by something.
Can we call this what it is?
We hate one another. This is the conclusion I came to in reading through Proverbs 10:12. I also found much help by Charles Bridges’ commentary on Proverbs. Here is what he said about this text:
Hatred, however varnished by smooth pretense, is the selfish principle of man. Like a subterraneous fire, it continually stirs up mischief and creates or keeps alive rankling coldness, disgusts, dislikes, envies, and evil surmisings. Hatred carps at the infirmities of others, aggravates the least slip, or resents the most trifling or even imaginary provocation. These strifes are kindled to the great dishonor of God and the marring of the beauty and consistency of the gospel. (Bridges, Proverbs)
What Bridges’ is saying here is that hatred does four things. First, it keeps alive ill feelings towards others. It keeps stoking the flames. Secondly, it continually finds faults at the infirmities of others. Thirdly, it turns the least little slip into a big deal. And lastly, it has deep bitterness toward the most trifling or even imaginary thing—it wants to be mad.
But contrast this with love which covers over a multitude of sins. Hatred wants to pull of the covers. It wants to expose everyone and everything. Hatred wants to view others in the worst possible light. Love on the other hand looks for ways to view people positively. Again, I appreciate the words of Bridges:
Love covers, overlooks, speedily forgives and forgets. Full of candor and inventiveness, it puts the best construction on doubtful matters, searches out any palliation, does not rigidly eye or wantonly expose a brother’s faults, nor uncover them at all except so far as may be needful for his ultimate good. To refrain from gross slander, while abundant scope is left for needless and unkind detraction, is not covering sin. (Bridges, Proverbs)