Psalm 97:10 (NIV)
Let those who love the Lord hate evil, for He guards the lives of His faithful ones and delivers them from the hand of the wicked.
I always love to bask in the spiritual emotion that King David shares through His inspired meditations and prayers. Our Verse of the Day comes from a Psalm that exalts God and His supremacy … that implores us to worship the sovereignty and majesty of God … that reminds us of the power of the Faithful One who protects our lives. God is to be exalted! I encourage you to read the entire Psalm (link here), and not just the verse or two presented for discussion and encouragement:
Psalm 97:9-12 (NIV)
For you, Lord, are the Most-High over all the earth; you are exalted far above all gods. Let those who love the Lord hate evil, for He guards the lives of His faithful ones and delivers them from the hand of the wicked. Light is sown on the righteous (Cf. Psalm 112:4) and joy on the upright in heart. Rejoice in the Lord, you who are righteous, and praise His holy name.
Here, David affirms the supremacy of a single Holy Being … Yahweh … who is the Most-High God. His Being and majesty are infinitely above anything that could even be titled a little god. David wanted the people to know and to understand WHO they worship and the purpose for which He is to be exalted. God is ultimately beyond our comprehension; and yet, He wants us to know Him and to love Him with the light that we have been given through His Spirit and His Word.
Love is the defining term of the relationship we are to embrace with our Most-High God. And there are qualities to love that we would do well to examine. We are commanded by God to love Him, to walk in obedience to Him, and to keep His commandments, decrees, and laws as Moses exhorted. (Cf. Deuteronomy 30:11-20) Thus, to demonstrate love for God, we are to be obedient! David asserted that those who love the Lord will hate evil. Thus, to demonstrate love for God, we must abhor anything that is against what is good – as God has defined it for His creation. And love for God is manifested through faithfulness to Him. What we profess to God must align with what we do for God. The Apostle John made these very same points:
1 John 2:4-6 (NIV)
Whoever says, “I know Him,” but does not do what He commands is a liar, and the truth is not in that person. But if anyone obeys His word, love for God is truly made complete in them. This is how we know we are in Him: Whoever claims to live in Him must live as Jesus did.
1 John 4:7-8 (NIV)
Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.
1 John 5:2-3 (NIV)
This is how we know that we love the children of God: by loving God and carrying out His commands. In fact, this is love for God: to keep His commands. And His commands are not burdensome….
Paul wrote in Romans 13:10, “Love does no harm to a neighbor. Therefore, love is the fulfillment of the Law.” And he instructed in 1 Corinthians 13:6, “Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.” Indeed, love hates evil in any form! (Cf. Romans 12:9) This is what we need to understand: those who love the Lord are protected by God – for He guards the lives of His faithful ones and delivers them from the hand of the wicked. Faithful ones are those who love God and love others as He has commanded. If we claim to have fellowship with Him and yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not live out the truth. (Cf. 1 John 1:6) And as Jesus affirmed: “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.” (Cf. John 8:12)
This is why the righteous … those who love the Lord and hate evil … are able to rejoice in the Lord and to worship Him. It stems from the deep love of God for us so that our response to Him can be none other than love itself … a love expressed by worship in Spirit and in Truth … and demonstrated through love for one another. So, I pray that you will find something here that will resonate in your heart … to either challenge you, encourage you, or both.
So Now You Know…
Have a Blessed Day!
For, “Whoever would love life and see good days must keep their tongue from evil and their lips from deceitful speech. They must turn from evil and do good; they must seek peace and pursue it. ~ 1 Peter 3:10-11