For we ourselves were also once foolish, disobedient, deceived, serving various lusts and pleasures, living in malice and envy, hateful and hating one another. (Titus 3:3)
We unfortunately see these characteristics not only in the world, but among believers as well. The apostle Paul rightfully asks in the book of Romans, “How shall we who died to sin live any longer in it?”(1) How can we continue to hate those for whom Christ died? Why do we continue to walk in malice and envy? Why do we continue to be deceived when we know the deceiver’s devices? Are we still foolish? When we were in the world without Christ, we had no control over our sinful nature. But now that we are His and have been redeemed, forgiven, sanctified, and graced how can we continue in such a state of sinfulness? The answer is simply, “by choice”. Who do you hate? Stop the hatred. In what realm are you disobedient? Stop the disobedience. Toward whom are you malicious and envious? Repent and bless, and curse not. We do not have to embrace those who have harmed us, we just have to love them and pray for them.