Hate The Sin But Not the Sinner

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By Hadrian Mâr Élijah Bar Israël

The catch phrase “Hate the sin, but not the sinner” has been going around recently in certain circles of people... But is that really what God has called us to do? Yeshue says that we are to love, that God is love, and we are made in His Image. If we are made in the Image of love, then why should we hate even the sin? So what does the scripture mean when it says this?

Oh, wait... "Hate the sin but love the sinner" isn’t in the scriptures anywhere. It’s a made up doctrine from the 5th century Manichean church father Augustine whose personal philosophical beliefs now form a large part of Christian dogma.

Those people who justify Augustine point to Jude 1:23 as ‘proof’. The Byzantine Majority Text (2005) gives the Greek redaction of the Book of Jude thus:

οὓς δὲ ἐν φόβῳ σῴζετε, ἐκ πυρὸς ἁρπάζοντες, μισοῦντες καὶ τὸν ἀπὸ τῆς σαρκὸς ἐσπιλωμένον χιτῶνα.

Moreover, save others from the fire, grabbing others showing mercy with fear, disliking even the clothing of flesh which has been stained.

Not a lot of “hating” going on in that... It seems to be about rescuing people from fire. But there is no Aramaic manuscript with even the word “fire” in it. The Bible Translated gives the Aramaic verse as:

כד דין מתתוין אתרחמו עליהון בדחלתא כד סנין אנתון אף לכותינא דמן בסרא דמכתמא

Which is translated as:

Yet, when they repent, have [love / mercy / compassion], about their fear, even if you find the garment of defiled flesh to be ugly. (Jude 1:23 TBT)

But “disliking” (Greek) and “ugly” (Aramaic), are not “hate” in the sense that we understand it in modern English. The King James Version has:

And others save with fear, pulling them out of the fire; hating even the garment spotted by the flesh.

Which is taken from the Latin Vulgate text, which reads:

illos vero salvate de igne rapientes aliis autem miseremini in timore odientes et eam quae carnalis est maculatam tunicam

and some save, snatching them out of the fire to others show mercy, mixed with fear, hating even the coat of defiled flesh

So something got mixed up here, between the original Aramaic Peshitta and the English. Both “fire” and “hate” got added to a verse about mercy, and love. Please bear in mind that hating the "sin and not the sinner" is still “hate”...

Do you really think that the God of Love has called you to hate?