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Lesson 15: What Does It Mean to Hate My Brother? (1 John 3:11-15)

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Few people would want to think of themselves as murderers. It’s one of those sins of which almost everyone can say, “Well, I’m an OK person; it’s not like I’ve ever killed anyone!” But the Apostle John, as he addresses his readers, presses in on the topic of murder much harder than this. Equating a hateful heart with this most heinous crime is the difficult reality he puts before the church. “You might as well be Cain” is the message he presents to those who would want to dismiss any harbored disdain for a brother. Pastor Daniel brings out the extreme nature of John’s language by emphasizing the main idea, “The one who doesn’t love his brother hates him.” There is no middle ground to walk in between love and hate. The fruits that flow from either a loving heart or a hateful one will be consistent with that particular heart.

Summary by Seth Kempf, Bethany Community Church Staff

Related Topics: Hamartiology (Sin), Love