True Christian love is not universal. It does not extend to all men. The fact is, if I love the Lord Jesus Christ there are some people I cannot love. There is such a thing as a righteous hatred.
Listen to God’s servant David, the man after God’s own heart. He wrote these words under the infallible influence of God the Holy Spirit – “Do not I hate them, O Lord,- that hate thee? And am not I grieved with those that rise up against thee? I hate them with a perfect hatred. I count them mine enemies” (Ps. 139:21-22). A reasonable inference from those two verses is that those who are the Lord’s enemies, those who hold our God in contempt, are to be counted as our enemies and held in contempt by us.
Yes, the Lord said for us to love our enemies and to pray for those who despite fully use us. That, by the grace of God, I can and will do. If a man abuses me, slanders me and does me harm, I can love him, forgive him, pray for him, and seek the best for him. BUT OUR LORD NEVER COMMANDED US TO LOVE HIS ENEMIES! And that is something I cannot do. Elijah held the prophets of Baal in comtempt. The Apostle Paul pronounced a curse of irreversible woe and eternal damnation upon any who came preaching another gospel. John the Beloved forbids us to receive into our homes those who deny the doctrine of Christ, telling us neither to feed them nor wish them well. David hated those who hated his God. And I find that same passion in my heart for the false prophets of our day.
Love for Christ constrains me to hold those in contempt who rob him of his glory as our Redeemer and King. Love for the souls of men compels me to denounce those who preach a false gospel. Love for the church of Christ, the family of God, compels me to despise those who pervert the gospel of Christ. Love for the Lord God constrains me to hate those who deny his sovereignty and despise the gospel of his saving grace and majestic glory.
How can I do otherwise? Those who are the enemies of the cross of Christ are my enemies. If I love Christ I cannot love those who deny the efficacy of his blood. I will not, I cannot cease to denounce and oppose the doctrines of antichrist and those who preach them, whether it comes in the form of papacy or in the form of modern fundamentalism. Loyalty to Christ demands loyalty in opposing his enemies. It would be far easier, and much more reasonable, for me to embrace as my friend a man who had brutally raped and murdered my wife than it would be for me to embrace as my brethren men who are set in opposition to the gospel of the grace and glory of God in Christ.
What about you? Will you continue to embrace as true preachers and brethren men who deny the gospel of God’s electing grace, redemptive glory, and saving power? Will you continue to attend a house of worship where the blood of Christ is despised and the Word of God is trampled under foot? Will you continue to be identified with those who are the enemies of the cross of Christ? I admonish you who love the Lord Jesus Christ and the gospel of his grace. Search the scriptures to see what God has revealed about his Son, find a man who is preaching the gospel as it is revealed in the New Testament, and go hear what he has to say. God may just speak to you through him.
We are bound to love our own enemies, but we are not bound to love God’s enemies. We are to wish them, as enemies, a complete overthrow; but to wish them, as men, a gracious conversion, that they may obtain God’s pardon, and become his friends, and followers, and servants. C H Spurgeon