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Deuteronomy 4:15-40
The Lord is God both in heaven and on earth, and there is no other (Deuteronomy 4:39).

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Read Galatians 6:9 and note what Paul said about persevering in doing good things for Jesus—including reaching out to unbelievers.

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What encourages you to share God’s love with people you know who are far from Him? Why do you think some people hate God and His children so much?

She hated anyone who believed in God. A self-proclaimed atheist, the young woman did everything she could to destroy the faith of believers in Jesus. She would even write vulgar things on the pages of their Bibles. But then, as the Holy Spirit worked in her life and Christians continued to reach out lovingly to her, her hard heart began to melt. Soon she considered herself an “agnostic.” Then came the day she fell to her knees and tearfully received Jesus as her Savior. Recently, I was privileged to have a part in her baptism. Faith had replaced disbelief. Love had conquered hate.

The people of ancient Israel struggled with their view of God, much like my young friend did for many years. Moses called them to turn from idolatry and to seek God with all their heart and soul (Deuteronomy 4:11-19,29). By doing so, they would “find Him.” They were also instructed to “keep [this] firmly in mind: “The Lord is God both in heaven and on earth, and there is no other” (Deuteronomy 4:39). This is a truth that my young friend finally acknowledged.

Moses didn’t give up on the people he was striving to lead to the one true God (Deuteronomy 4:35), and neither should we. God’s love and blessing (Deuteronomy 4:37) may not be apparent to those you know—people who don’t acknowledge Him and perhaps act hatefully toward you. But don’t give up. God’s mercy can reach even the hardest of hearts (Deuteronomy 4:31).

Whether you’re reaching out to atheists, agnostics, or even backslidden believers in Jesus, be encouraged. The young woman I mentioned above is a living example of a person who has turned from hate and embraced the love of God. Keep pointing the people in your life to the loving God whom they might one day “find” (Deuteronomy 4:29).

NLT 365-day reading plan passage for today: Matthew 2:13-23

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3 Responses to “hate to love”

  1. roxanne robbins says:

    My favorite stories are redemption stories. As I recognize my deep need for God’s redemption in my own life, I’m encouraged to learn about other people, such as the sister you wrote about and her journey to relationship with Christ.

  2. yemiks1 says:

    This is one of the most important purpose of the Church- Encouragement.

  3. daisymarygoldr says:

    The young woman’s story is indeed encouraging! People hate God and His children because they are under the control of the evil one. Satan, who is the god of this world, has blinded the minds of those who don’t believe. (2 Corinthians 4:4). As a result atheists and agnostics cannot see that God is good and He is love.

    This is why we must not engage in debates with those who don’t believe. Especially avoid scientific or philosophical arguments in an attempt to prove God’s existence. Such reasoning not only sounds silly but are also not convincing. It is pointless as they cannot perceive the truth unless the Holy Spirit reveals it to them.

    Now, those who turn away from God after knowing the truth is an altogether different story. This is willful rebellion. In such cases, if they are born of God’s Spirit they will surely return to Him when they come to their senses. If they don’t, it proves they don’t belong to Him.

    Whether it is atheists, agnostics or backslidden believers, as you rightly reminded us, keep pointing people to the loving God. We do this by speaking the truth, in love. Don’t worry about driving them away as they are already far away from God. Most importantly, continue to pray for them. That God may enlighten their eyes of understanding. On our part, we need to love our enemies and do good to those who hate us.

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