“If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you. If ye were of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you” (John 15:18, 19). These words were spoken by Jesus to His disciples on the night before His crucifixion.
True biblical Christianity has never been popular with the world; that is, with the world’s philosophy, fashions, and the political correctness of the times. That is because the world’s ways are diametrically opposed to the Bible.
When I use the term “Christian,” I mean not those whom merely “profess” Christ, but those whom have received, “possessed” Christ through a definite act of “repentance toward God, and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ,” (i. e. those who have been truly born again and have become the “sons of God”). “He was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew him not. He came unto his own, and his own received him not. But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name” (John 1:10-12). This is a spiritual birth that takes place at a particular point of time, just as one’s physical birth.
A true Christian is one who believes that the Bible is the actual word of God and is our highest authority. The Bible instructs us to, “be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.” (Romans 12:2) It is the adherence to biblical principles that draws the world’s ire against Christians (really against God).
The Bible declares that life begins at conception, and that life in the mother’s womb is a person created by God that is to be nurtured unto birth by the mother, “Lo, children are an heritage of the LORD: and the fruit of the womb is his reward” (Psalm 127:3). “I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvellous are thy works; and that my soul knoweth right well. Thine eyes did see my substance, yet being unperfect; and in thy book all my members were written, which in continuance were fashioned, when as yet there was none of them” (Psalm 139:14, 16).
The Bible declares that God determines the gender of each person, and that cannot be changed no matter what man does, and to attempt to change it is in direct violation of God’s order.
The Bible teaches that sexual intimacy is to be only between a man and a woman who are married to each other.
Bible-believing Christianity and those who follow it stand in direct opposition to the world’s philosophy and are hated by the world (Jesus’ words). That hatred was illustrated recently by the angry, and obscene protests of the world against Karen Pence, our vice President’s wife, for teaching art in a Christian school.
What is the Christ-ordained responsibility of Christians in reaction to the world’s hatred? “And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.” (Mark 16:15) As the Apostle Paul said, “For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth;” Romans 1:16)
We must remember, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” (John 3:16)
Roy Delia is pastor of the New Hope Baptist Church, Ontario. He can be reached in care of The Argus Observer, 1160 S.W. Fourth St., Ontario, OR 97914. The Argus Observer weekly faith column features a rotation of writers from many different faiths and perspectives.