Proverbs 10:12, “Hatred stirs up dissension, but love covers over all wrongs.”
If you had a choice to choose how people would always treat you, either with love or hate, which one would you pick? Love. Why? Everyone loves love. Even people who hate, like those in gangs or terrorist groups, still choose to love their own as family. No one really wants hate all the time, everyone down deep inside wants love.
Now consider this, Jesus said in Luke 6:31, “Do to others as you would have them do to you.” We are to treat people not like how they treat us but rather how we want to be treated. And how do we want to be treated? With love. As a result, we should love people even when they commit wrongs against us. Jesus on the cross is our best example of love covering all wrongs.
In today’s proverb, King Solomon is teaching a simple lesson; hatred causes dissension (more trouble) and love covers (forgives) all wrongs. Now someone might say, “But the person who hurt me doesn’t deserve to be forgiven because of what they did to me!” However, Jesus is not teaching that we should love and forgive people because they deserve it, but rather because it is the right thing to do. Just like the ole’ saying goes, “two wrongs don’t make a right.” Our wrong action of unforgiveness will not bring about any good.
We can be sure that in life people will sin against us and make us angry. In those times we have a choice to either hate them or love them. Hating them will cause more problems but loving them will please God and bring you healing. Remember, biblical forgiveness doesn’t mean accepting someone’s evil behavior as right. They still have to deal with their consequences and God’s judgment. For example, when the Roman soldiers crucified Jesus He said, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing,” (Luke 23:34). He wasn’t saying they were “okay” or “right” in what they did. No, as a matter of fact, if people who sin against us don’t personally ask God to forgive them, they will be punished in eternal fire for their sins. God said, “Vengeance is mine, I will repay!” (Romans 12:19 KJV).
You may not be able to choose how people will treat you, but you can choose how you will respond and treat them. When you’re wronged, the choice is yours, you can either love or hate. I pray you choose to love!
Corrie ten Boom was a Christian who lived during the Nazi Holocaust. Her family helped Jews escape the Germans by hiding them in their house. Eventually her family was caught and imprisoned. Both her dad and sister died in prison. Before her sister died she said, “There is no pit so deep that [God] is not deeper still.”
Corrie was eventually freed and led a powerful life of teaching the love of God. She once described the difficulty she had in forgiving the wicked German soldiers but she found the will to forgive because of God’s love. She then said, “Forgiveness is an act of the will, and the will can function regardless of the temperature of the heart.” Decide today to let God’s love flow through you and cover the multitude of wrongs done to you.
When you’re wronged do you act in love or hate?
- Ask God to forgive your sins as you forgive those who sin against you.
- Next time you’re offended remember to choose love over hate.
- Pray for those who have wronged you to repent and live for Jesus.