Hatred (στυγητός) expresses a despicable or loathsome attitude. It is in contrast to indifference (μισέω), which conveys the concept of not caring about the well-being of others unless it benefits you. Hate is a type of attitude likened to how a storm makes the sky appear in the distance: dark, gloomy, and threatening, Matthew 16:3.
“Hateful”, as an adjective, is only used once in scripture in Titus 3:3. In submitting to rulers and authorities so that we are ready in every good work, we are to put away blasphemy as we seek peace and show kindness to all. Not forgetting that in our former manner of life, we were disobedient, malice, and hateful while being indifferent to others. Since hateful and indifference are used together in the same sentence to describe a person’s attitude and activities, they do not carry the same meaning. This is important to note because many of our English versions translate indifference (μισέω) as hatred, thereby masking the actual meaning of indifference. The apostle John writes concerning those who say they love God but are indifferent to their fellow brother in the Lord. Since they are showing indifference to a fellow saint, they cannot be loving God, 1 John 4:20. This is not hatred towards others, but not being concerned about their well-being, for indifference expresses an attitude that is apathetic towards others because you have no particular interest in or concern about them. This cloaking in the meaning of indifference also impacts the saint’s understanding of the world system, for it does not have a loathsome or despicable attitude towards Christians; rather, it is indifferent to them. Therefore, the world system has no issue with using Christianity and Christians for its […]