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DOES FORGIVING ALLOW YOU TO HATE SIN AND LOVE SINNER?
 
Love sinner and hate sin advocates begrudging love
 
Religion claims you must forgive and love the sinner but hate the sin.


It calls itself good because of that teaching. But it is aware that some people have to feel a murderous hatred for the evil person before they can start moving on. That takes the sheen off. That shows the hypocrisy.

Sin is seen as being very bad and hateful and worthy of guilt. Religion seeks to lay a severe burden of guilt on the sinner. This is vicious - it is changing your life that matters not how guilty you feel. Roman Catholicism accuses people who masturbate of grave sin. It is gravely evil of the Church to spout such hurtful nonsense. That the Church offers confession to relieve the guilt is no excuse. What would you think of a doctor who poisons the drinking water even if he is ready to give victims some stomach medicine?
 
Loving the sinner may mean forgiving the sinner. Hating the sin would mean you don't forgive the sin. Loving the sinner and hating the sin is therefore a contradiction and a dose of hypocrisy. If the sin and the sinner are separate, then you forgive sins not sinners.
 
Suppose you really can separate your love for the sinner from your hatred for the sin. If you have been hurt or betrayed very badly you will find it nearly impossible to hate the sin and not the sinner. If you deny how hurt you are, you may be able to give out fake forgiveness.  But that only a cosmetic answer – not a real one!
 
The teaching that we love and forgive others in spite of their sins implies this love is grudging. How real is love like that? It will eat at you for years and make you even worse than a few months of honestly hating the person would.
 
To say a person is the sin - that is what you mean when you call a person a sinner - and then to deny it in order to love the person is giving that person begrudging love and therefore begrudging forgiveness.
 
Love sinner and hate sin becomes a problem only if somebody sins. It is clear then that forgiveness must be needed. You forgive people not sins or wrongs. How can you do that if you see the sin as having nothing to do with the sinner?
 
Marcus Aurelius said that we must expect to meet harmful people so to keep ourselves from being poisoned by their ways and corrupted, and so that we will value them properly, we must be prepared for them and forgive them in advance - before they do anything! That way we value them and keep our inner peace. If he is right, he certainly shows that if we forgive all people for what they have done in the past we view everybody we meet as somebody who we have not forgiven in advance. Our alleged love of them is suspect.
 
If sin and sinner separate then forgiveness is unimportant
 
If you love the sinner and hate the sin and they are separate then it follows that you can forgive the sinner but continue hating the sin. Indeed you should do this. You can forgive the sinner but not forgive the sin. Christians will say that the more you love the person the more you will hate their sins that they commit now and the sins that they have committed in the past and even those they have been forgiven. So you love those sinners by hating their sins even if those sinners are forgiven.
 
Forgiving the sin means that you are wiping the slate clean and relegating the sin to the past. It is in the past and not to be treated as existent any more. It is not loving the sinner and hating the sin. You can't put the sin in the past and go on hating it. It is persons you forgive not sins. Strictly speaking that is the case.
 
Why do we have to hate the sin? Could we not just forgive it?
 
The view that we are not to hate the sin but to forgive the sin is incorrect. We are to hate the sin but to forgive it. Even when we forgive the sin still existed and is a hateful thing. Forgiving implies that the sin is hateful and evil. So even when it is forgiven we are to continue hating it. The doctrine makes real forgiveness impossible and instead of forgiveness you have self-deceit.
 
Forgiveness means trusting again. You can only love a person in so far as you trust them. Love for another is caused by trusting that person. Therefore if you say you love the sinner but not her or his sins then you are lying for by saying they are their sins you are saying you don’t trust them in those things. It is clear then that if you see a person as a sinner or yourself as a sinner then in so far as you see this in so far do you hate them and yourself. Not being trusted hurts. If you don’t trust a person you will wish their endeavours will go wrong for them and you may do or think you should do things to stop them doing the things you dislike. The employee who is not trusted will lose the job and suffer. Nothing can be more ridiculous than saying you trust the sinner but not the sinner’s sins. It is the sinner you mistrust not the sins. How can you mistrust sins? They are not people or robots. Mistrust here is a personal feeling and verdict, it can only be personal and involve persons.
 
Forgiveness denies the goodness and the rationality of God and backs up atheism. It implies that since God wants us all to forgive that this means he wants punishment banned on earth though the Bible and Jesus both advocated stern punishments. If it is right to forgive, then it is wrong to punish. It has to be one or the other for mercy is pleasant and punishing is not.
  
Forgiveness is an act of pity. The absurd thing about this is pitying somebody that deliberately does wrong. How can you pity somebody that causes their evil out of their own free will? Would it not be insulting them to pity their free will as if they shouldn’t have it? Forgiveness then contradicts the rule of condemning the sin but not the sinner. You don’t forgive sins though you say you do. What you forgive is people because people are sinners. If the sin is separate from the sinner then it is nonsense to speak of sinners. God cannot pity the sinner if the sinner sins of his or her own free will so God can’t forgive. That is all the attraction of God eliminated in a sentence. And it means we can’t forgive either.
 
The Christian might say that pitying the sinner means you want to stop the sinner from deliberately doing wrong because wrong is degrading and self-abuse. If you can’t hate the sinner then how can you pity the sinner in this sense? To pity the sinner for the sin in the sense they mean implies that the sinner and the sin are one which is true but if the sin is something hateful and that should not exist that tells us that the sinner should also not exist and be hated.
 
To hate sin can result in the sinner being persecuted not for themselves but to get at sin. It is true that hating sin is unpleasant but it is equally true that Christianity does not see what is unpleasant as necessarily bad. You cannot condemn hating sin as giving in to evil because you don’t have to let it make you evil. The Church says that God sends hateful things like suffering and can kill your beloved baby – if you love your baby you will hate its death – to make us holier. If hating sin makes you evil then there simply cannot be a God or he is evil if he exists. Hating evil is only hating a thing – it is not a hate that does much harm. It only seeks to bring harm to evil which is only right for to harm evil means doing good. When God says he comes first it follows that hating evil comes first therefore if hating evil is bad for you then it is still the right thing to do even if it lands you in the local psychiatric hospital within a fortnight.
 
Trying to destroy sin by preaching and by love-bombing or threatening the vengeance of God is really saying other people have no right to their opinion. That is what causes human evil, people changing their mind about what is good and seeing what is harmful as the best or good option under the circumstances. There is no way you can love the sinner then if you hate sin for real hatred despises the freedom and rights of others. That is one reason why Humanism does not believe in converting people but in bringing people to the light so that they may change themselves.
 
The Handbook gives the solution to the problem of how you can hate sin and love sinner as forgiveness which it sees as a miracle that God causes us to perform for it is so unnatural and because we CANNOT love the sinner and hate the sin so we need to be lifted above nature to be able to.
 
It says forgiveness does not condone wrongdoing or condemn it. But of course forgiveness condemns for you cannot forgive without condemning and seeing the person as deserving to suffer first and it always condemns for it has to be maintained and kept up as it is not a once for all thing. You can’t pardon without condemning. All forgiving then is self-righteous and is condemning the sinner with the sin for it is not the sin you forgive but the sinner for it makes no sense to forgive a sin as if it were not part of the sinner. Since forgiveness always condemns it must condone the sin. For to condone a sin is to say you condemn it but have no desire to see it punished but you want it encouraged by going forward as if nothing has happened.
 
Christian morality is dangerous and the only solution is for the world to turn away from it and towards Humanism which denies the hypocrisy of forgiveness and replaces it with seeing sin as an illusion caused by an intellectual sickness.
 
The claim that forgiving people causes them to separate themselves from their sins (page 127, Handbook of Christian Apologetics) would seem to justify forgiveness. But that is too far-fetched of a claim. It is as silly as saying that taking food that is probably poisoned from an enemy and eating it is not killing yourself on the basis that your gracious acceptance will make him relent and bring you an antidote. Most of us like to be a mixture of good and bad and have people we will not speak to no matter who says they are decent people.
 
The Christian religion says that sins committed against us ought to be pardoned solely for the love of Jesus Christ (page 33, Moral Philosophy). When it is not for the sinner or for yourself then how could it be really forgiveness? It is not forgiveness to forgive somebody just to get your hands on their money. It is not peace you are after but the money. To condemn somebody’s sin as hateful is to condemn them as hateful too. When you look at it this way it is even clearer that hating sin is hating the sinner and if you say you love the sinner you are deceiving yourself and showing your hatred for them by deceiving them for you do not.

If God and his grace is the key to loving the sinner and hating the sin then how come teaching the sinner that God exists is such a hateful and injurious act? It is like trying to douse flames with petrol. The Church tells people that a God that inspires fear will inspire little else in them so they present them with a nice God. But what is the use of believing in a nice God when there are still terrible things and possibly an eternal Hell that can happen? It is underhand to present a nice God who lets bad things happen and people go to Hell when you might as well believe in a bad one when the nice God is not going to be much of a help. For the Church to pay tribute to the nice God theory and have so many horrible doctrines is a clear admission that the doctrines are immoral and should be abominated. And the Christians look forward to the battle of Armageddon in which the final showdown between good and evil will take place with the damned going to Hell forever. They say they do not fear these things. But if they really loved others as themselves they would fear them for them. But they are indifferent and to the degree that they are indifferent they refuse to love for indifference is the real opposite of love. You have to like or love somebody to some degree to be able to be hurt and upset enough by them to hate them.
 
If you hate sin then you cannot be even partly understanding towards sin in yourself or towards the sins of others. When God is all-good that means God comes first and he must hate sin totally meaning that sin is the worst evil of all. It is worse than death for God made our bodies to break down and die. Understanding indicates that the sin is not entirely bad but is understandable up to a point. In other words some good intentions led to the sin and were used to make the sin happen. But to use good to do evil does not make anything understandable to any degree. It makes it far worse and inexcusable. The Roman Church emphasises that priests must be understanding in the confessional. But this is only public relations. But they cannot be understanding without condoning the sin to some extent in which case it is madness going to them to be made holy by their power of absolution. The whole point about sin is that it is perverted good therefore to say you understand it is to deny this. This point shows why we must deny the doctrine of free will and reject it for the poison that it is. At least then we can understand without loving the crime for we see the crime as an illness not as something to judge and condemn somebody for.
 
Forgiving a person always involves making excuses for them and blaming yourself at least partly. That is why you have to hear their side before you can forgive. If you were not trying to see and feel that their sin was not a sin there would be no point in all this – you would assume that all meant well without hearing the other person’s confession. After you forgive you may say you disapprove of what they have done. What you mean by this is that you call it wrong and choose to see it as wrong but in actuality you do not.  It is like a man looking at a bad view and seeing it but not really taking it in. It is just physically seen that is all. With respect to sin that is no good. That is not hating the sin. If sin is bad you cannot love the person if you love or are apathetic towards sin so you can’t win. It is no wonder I say there is no point or use in believing in free will, loving or hating right without any force making you do it, for all you end up doing is following a Janus-faced morality.
 
Being forgiven by God matters more than being happy and healthy in this world for God comes first. Not only is he to be loved first but with ALL not some of our being (Mark 12:29-34). So forgiveness comes before the things we really value so logically being forgiven by others must come before them too. Therefore nobody can forbid sternness and allege that friendliness and contentment are better and entitle us not to be stern.
 
Jesus said if we do not forgive we will not be forgiven by the Heavenly Father (Matthew 6:12-15). His game then was to blackmail us to forgive. But to pressure people to forgive means that you are wearing down or quenching their power to forgive. It would have been better for Jesus to say, “Forgive for its own sake and not yours or God’s for there is no God”. To forgive for any other reason is just as false as forgiving somebody for shooting you just because they are blackmailing you to do so. It’s not real forgiveness. It only looks that way.
 
Suppose if somebody robs your house and puts the money on a bet for you that is very likely to win and it does win. If you are given all the money you will feel you have very little to forgive and it won’t bother you. Forgiveness then is not about hating the sin. It is about not getting your own way and changing your mind about being resentful about that. To forgive somebody for doing wrong is one thing but to forgive somebody for doing something while you have no concern for right and wrong is not loving forgiveness. It is not loving the sinner and hating the sin. In actual fact, all the offences we take are not about right and wrong. They are about us not getting our own way which is a different thing. It is our feelings that we are worried about.
 
The way there are certain offences against us that we don’t mind and though we say we disapprove of them technically we do not and there are others that rouse our anger and hatred shows that there is something false about it when we forgive sins or look for pardon from God. Our forgiveness then is just unjust discrimination. It is not sins we forgive at all but our wounded feelings which has nothing to do with sin for you can feel offended by somebody doing right by you. Then we have the nerve to expect God to forgive us like we forgive!
 
When you can’t love your neighbour while hating his sins how can you love yourself and hate your sins? Religion and belief in free will are destructive to self-esteem and those who have no self-esteem or artificial self-esteem are unable to care much for others. Those religionists who have real self-esteem are only kidding themselves that they are religionists for they cannot believe in free will and therefore they cannot believe in religion. They just go along with it as if they do though they may not consciously see it.
 
Forgiveness for Christians is meant to unite them to God so it is a prayer itself. Christian forgiveness is about reconciling you to God and you are meant to be reconciled to others not for them or yourself but for God. Being reconciled with them is just a means of being at peace with God for he commands that you reconcile with your enemies. So you have to forgive because you hate sin for the sake of God. Forgiveness is not one act but a series of acts or a constantly maintained attitude – it has to be kept up. So you inflict the pain of hate, just for the sake of God, on yourself. Christian forgiveness is anything but love for love should be about yourself for all love starts with self-love not God. Forgiveness, if bad in a Christian context, means that I am using it as net of evil in which to catch my enemies for Christian forgiveness is meant to make others forgiving too.
 
GODLY FORGIVENESS CONDONES THE CRIME
 
God wants us to forgive, according to the Church. The Church says that when you forgive you do something so special and divine that the evil done against you means nothing in comparison. The Church says the greatest good is not in being preserved by God from evil but in facing evil head on and overcoming it and rendering it powerless. All these considerations seek to encourage evil. They have the attitude of encouragement in the sense that they make the evil nothing and insignificant.  The evil may be in the past but that does not entitle us to declare it to be nothing.
 
Religion says we must hate the sin for Jesus said we should detest sin so much that we would rather die or be mutilated than endure it. We are supposed to hate the sin even after the sin is forgiven which raises the question of what good forgiveness is then in that case! We are supposed to love the sinner and hate the sin. If we hate the sinner, the Church would far rather we direct most of the hatred towards the sin than towards the sinner. Forgiveness is about obeying Jesus and not about making us healthier and happier.
 
Jesus commanded forgiveness and held that not forgiving was a wrong against the evil person. The Christians should teach that evil person should hate being hated by the victim more than anything else for it demeans his value and the victim’s value. That is what should bother the evil person. So by forgiving we do the evil person a favour. They say I should add “and ourselves one too”.  But we could let go of the bad feelings and still not forgive. The wife who punishes her estranged husband by being happy and successful in life is enjoying being unforgiving. She hates him in a way that does her no harm. So you forgive really for the other person. Forgiving then is condoning.
 
Forgiving is the same thing as condoning a crime. Religion says you can forgive and still send a person to jail. In that case, you are condoning the crime but sending him to jail for the sake of society and not to punish him.
 
Forgiving removes the main purpose of punishment – it rewards the crime.  If forgiving is so good then punishment of any kind is revenge. This makes those who have been abused feel they deserve all they get if they cannot forgive. This is all the more disturbing if it the abuse took place in childhood.
 
Selfish
 
It is easy to forgive wrongs done to other people than to yourself. It’s selfish for that reason and the Church and every other religion says selfishness is wrong. It’s an act of violence against the wronged person even if they cannot see it. That is why if you forgive the man who has beaten your sister to death you really don’t care about her. Or him either if he is degrading and harming himself by beating her.
 
If you care about a person you will hate to lose her and you will be angry with him for he took her away. If you want to let things go and still care about her you have to adopt the Atheist solution of denying free will.
 
If it is bad to forgive what is done to others when you don't really and cannot understand what it was really like for them you are using their pain to boost your sanctimony. To bring God into it only pressures people to forgive what was done to others. God makes the selfishness worse.

 

Derrida

CONCLUSION
 
The doctrines of God, sin and forgiveness of sins have absurd implications. The intelligent cannot be said to take them seriously. It is easy for religion to make people feel they cannot love the sinner and hate the sin. They might take religion seriously on sin but not on loving the sinner. Thus they could end up hating the sinner.

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