We all want someone to blame, someone to accuse, someone to hate.
Scripture says that God hates.
What is hate for?
In Revelation 12, after we meet the woman giving birth to the Baby, we meet the dragon.
He wants to eat the Baby. And he tempts us to do the same.
The dragon is evil. The Baby is the Good in Flesh.
The dragon is chaos. The Baby is Logos.
The dragon is darkness. The Baby is the Light.
The dragon is nothingness. The Baby is the Good Free Will of God.
We are the woman.
In chapter 12 we meet the dragon and on several occasions I have met the dragon.
Having met the dragon, I have found it much harder to blame or accuse anyone…
And I have discovered what hate is for.
St. Paul wrote, “Hate the evil and cleave to the Good.”
It seems that you can eat the Good . . . or cleave to the Good, marry the Good, and give birth to the Good—a new you, the real you.
In the Garden of Eden, and in the Garden on Mt. Calvary, the dragon tempted us to take the Good to make ourselves good and we made ourselves bad, dead and enslaved to evil.
And in the same place, our Lord reveals that what we have taken has always been for-given… He is the Good, who makes us Good.
It’s hard to blame a person for choosing evil, if they weren’t free to choose the Good.
And yet, if we are never free to choose, it’s hard to think of us as people.
There are some people that we don’t blame, for we don’t think they’re free to choose the Good, because they don’t yet know what it is.
Those people are called children… And God turns them into men and women.
Jesus said, “You must become like little children to enter the Kingdom.”
It’s impossible to blame little children . . . and hostages.
“The whole world lies under the power of the evil one,” writes John.
At communion, we confess that we have taken the life of the Good.
And God reveals that He has always given the life of the Good—body broken and blood shed—“Take and eat. This is my body which is for you.”
“Where sin increased Grace abounded all the more.”
Sin is choosing nothingness and Grace is God choosing you.
The dragon is the manifestation of the void in which creation is revealed, just as a shadow is the manifestation of the absence of Light.
Fear is faith in the devil. Faith in God casts out fear and leaves no place for the devil.
With fear, we put flesh on the evil one. Sometimes that flesh is our own.
We are children terrified of the shadow—even our own shadow.
Stop staring at the shadow; turn and gaze into the Light.
Hate the darkness, and trust the Judgment of your Father.
Hate the evil and cleave to the Good.
Hate is for learning to love the Good in freedom.
At the cross, the prince of darkness swallowed the Light and the light destroyed the darkness.
At communion, we swallow the Good and we are un-dragoned.
*Discussion questions for this sermon are available here: Discussion Questions “What Hate is For”