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Why does the World Hate Christianity?

Few things provoke anger as strongly as a sincere expression of genuine Christianity.  Typically, any Scripturally principled statement of belief in God is highly offensive to men of the world.  For example, if a Christian declares that Jesus is the only way for eternal life and salvation (John 14:6; Acts 4:12), then the world labels him as a religious bigot who is closed-minded and intolerant of other religions.  He might even be considered suspicious and dangerous, although he has done nothing but state a Biblical belief.  If a Christian states his belief in a literal six-day creation according to the Bible, then the world considers him to be a superstitious fool who is in denial of science.  The condemnation of a Christian becomes even stronger when he takes a stand against immorality and godlessness, such as fornication, homosexuality, and abortion.  Many people of the world have become so sensitive to Christianity that they are even offended by any public recognition of the Lord at all.

Christianity is not the only religion that suffers opposition in the world, but the nature of the opposition against Christianity is unique.  Some religions are opposed because they promote violence against non-believers, but true Christianity promotes only peace and benevolence (Rom. 12:17-21).  Some religions are opposed by certain groups of people because those people are excluded and devalued, but Christianity reaches out to all men and is open to any who will believe in the Lord (Matt. 28:18-20; Rom. 1:16; Gal. 3:27-29).  Some religions are opposed because they are founded upon false teachings and the work of false prophets, but Christianity is founded upon the infallible word of God (2Tim. 3:16-17).  Rather than being opposed for any of these reasons, Christianity is opposed for one unique reason, and that reason is Jesus Christ.

The world’s hatred of Christianity is easily explained through the words of Jesus to His apostles in John 15:18-25:

"If the world hates you, you know that it has hated Me before it hated you.  If you were of the world, the world would love its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, because of this the world hates you.  Remember the word that I said to you, ‘A slave is not greater than his master.’  If they persecuted Me, they will also persecute you; if they kept My word, they will keep yours also.  But all these things they will do to you for My name’s sake, because they do not know the One who sent Me.  If I had not come and spoken to them, they would not have sin, but now they have no excuse for their sin.  He who hates Me hates My Father also.  If I had not done among them the works which no one else did, they would not have sin; but now they have both seen and hated Me and My Father as well.  But they have done this to fulfill the word that is written in their Law, ‘They hated Me without a cause.’”

Jesus attributed the world’s hatred of His followers directly to its hatred of Him.  Quite simply, worldly men hate Christianity and Christians because they hate Christ.

This leads us to another question: Why does the world hate Christ?  In the last statement of John 15:25, Jesus quoted from Psalm 69:4, saying, "They hated Me without a cause.”  Indeed, the Lord’s haters have no valid cause for their hatred, for Jesus has done nothing worthy of the rejection and persecution inflicted upon Him by the world.  In fact, Christ’s outpouring of love for the world should have led all men to love Him.  However, men of the world have their own evil reasons for hating the Lord.  Jesus explained their evil reasons in John 3:19-20:

"This is the judgment, that the Light has come into the world, and men loved the darkness rather than the Light, for their deeds were evil.  For everyone who does evil hates the Light, and does not come to the Light for fear that his deeds will be exposed.”

Jesus is the Light that exposes the darkness of evil men who love sin and wickedness.  They resent the Light that shows them for what they really are – wrong, corrupted, condemned, and bound for destruction and death.

Therefore, let us heed the words of 1John 3:13 – "Do not be surprised, brethren, if the world hates you.”  Because the world hates Jesus, it is to be expected that the world will hate His followers also.  Only Christianity shines the Light of Jesus on this world of sin, and this is the reason it is so strongly opposed.  For those who are evil, the truth and authority of Jesus are a constant threat.  Sometimes opponents of Christianity may seem to be strange partners until we realize that they are united on one point, and that is opposition to Christ.  Advocates of incompatible beliefs, such as humanists and radical Islamists, find common ground in their hatred of the Lord Jesus and His gospel.  All those who practice evil will unite to oppose the only religion that has the real substance of a genuine Savior, a historical foundation confirmed by many witnesses, and the authority of Almighty God.  No wonder these unrepentant sinners hate Christianity so much.

Stacey E. Durham




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