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Love really does conquer hate, eventually

“Hatred is the coward’s revenge for being intimidated.” — George Bernard Shaw

This world has already experienced too much hatred.

Hate began a very long time ago, when one creature became so envious of his creator that he wanted to be greater than him. When that didn’t work for Lucifer, he began exerting his energies to making sure that as many other creatures hate one another (and their creator) as possible.

OK, so you may not believe in God or the devil. That’s your choice. But you can’t deny that hatred has been around much longer than you or I.

What drives a person to murder someone else? Hatred. Hatred of that person’s position, power, possessions or personality inflames the envy and pride in a man’s heart (or woman’s) and drives him to entertain the thought of eliminating that person from existence.

The Apostle John wrote, “Anyone who hates his brother or sister is a murderer” (1 John 3:15). Jesus Christ said in his sermon on the mount that people condemn murder but don’t realize that anger leading to hate is just as bad (Matthew 5:21-22). It’s all a matter of what’s in a person’s heart.

In which of the following cases is hatred justified?

• I don’t like you because you’re different. So I hate you.

• You don’t like me so I hate you.

• You don’t agree with me about  [fill in the blank], so I hate you.

• Your skin is a different color or you speak another language, so I hate you.

• We don’t have the same religious beliefs, so I hate you.

Do any of these examples justify hatred? Of course not.

Don’t be misled by anyone. It really does not matter why you hate someone. It only matters if you do.

There is nothing good in hatred. Nothing. No one in the alt-right can be justified in hatred against anyone else. No one in the alt-left can be justified in hatred against anyone else. No one in the Neil Diamond middle-of-the-road milquetoast apathy self-help section can be justified in hatred against anyone else. My apologies to Neil Diamond. No one anywhere can be justified for hate, no matter how vehemently it’s defended.

I am not always innocent. I get angry like anyone else. I feel indignant when I see wrongs being perpetuated against the innocent. I don’t like to see anyone suffer injustice, even if they stand for things that breed feelings of antipathy in me.

Arrogance breeds arrogance. Hate breeds hatred. Like breeds like.

I’m not so naïve as to believe that all people are basically “good.” That’s a fairy tale that is woefully inaccurate. All people — left to their own devices — will end up at the lowest common denominator of hatred and disdain for anyone that isn’t just like them.

Naïveté aside, I do believe that love is the answer.

Jesus told his followers that the world would know they are really his if they just love one another. He also told them to love their families, friends and enemies. That covers everyone.

Love really does conquer hate, eventually.

A man named Mincaye was so full of fear that he and other members of his remote tribe murdered five men who came to share gifts and the gospel of Jesus with them. His fear led him to hate. But the families of these murdered men didn’t give up. Steve Saint, son of Nate Saint — one of the murdered men — was determined to love Mincaye and the others even after he knew the truth about what had happened. Eventually, Mincaye was won over by the love of Saint and the God he represented. Mincaye is now a preacher in his home country of Ecuador spreading love instead of hate.

Love isn’t easy. It requires effort. But you know what? So does hate.

If you’re going to work at something, work at the better one.

News editor Brett Campbell can be reached at 601-265-5307 or brett.campbell@dailyleader.com.