Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. 1 Corinthians 13:4-7Love doesn't "tolerate" sin.
Love doesn't compromise or bend the truth to avoid hurting someone's feelings.
Love stands for what's right even when it's not popular.
Love isn't silent, but rather speaks with wisdom and compassion.
Our society has this idea that to love someone means to accept them completely, as they are, no strings attached. They think that to love someone means letting them do whatever makes them happy, regardless of the consequences.
But that's not what love is. That's not how God loves us. God accept us as we are. We come to him in our sin, but then he asks us to change. He fills us with His Spirit and makes us more like him. God loves us by constantly pointing us to another way. A way free from selfishness, perversion, and death. He leads us in the way of truth, purity, and righteousness.
God wants what's best for us, and that means hating sin.
That's right. Love hates Sin.
But Love isn't rude about it. Love isn't hostile or mean. Love doesn't seek to put others down because they don't have it all together.
So often Christians get so caught up in hating sin (at least other people's sin) that we forget about compassion, wisdom, and forgiveness. We forget that we can share the gospel without elevating our own righteousness, that we can stand for the truth without knocking others down.
We forget that sinners aren't the enemy. Evil is the enemy, and those living in it are broken and deceived, facing eternal judgement...just like we were once.
No, Love doesn't tolerate sin, doesn't sweep it under the rug, doesn't smile and say "to each his own". Love also doesn't belittle, mock, or condemn others. True love doesn't rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth.
True love points people to Jesus, even when they don't want to listen. Love hates sin and fights it with the one weapon she has: Truth. The truth of Christ dying on the cross, paying the price for sin, conquering death, and bringing new life.
And if you and I really love those around us, we won't just ignore sin in our own lives or in the world around us. Instead, we will be the light, the salt, and the bearer of Good News.
We will compassionately speak the Truth...in Love.