Romans 12:9-21 English Standard Version (ESV)
Marks of the True Christian
9 Let love be genuine. Abhor what is evil; hold fast to what is good. 10 Love one another with brotherly affection. Outdo one another in showing honor. 11 Do not be slothful in zeal, be fervent in spirit,[a] serve the Lord. 12 Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer. 13 Contribute to the needs of the saints and seek to show hospitality.
14 Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse them. 15 Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep. 16 Live in harmony with one another. Do not be haughty, but associate with the lowly.[b] Never be wise in your own sight. 17 Repay no one evil for evil, but give thought to do what is honorable in the sight of all. 18 If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all. 19 Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave it[c] to the wrath of God, for it is written, “Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord.” 20 To the contrary, “if your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink; for by so doing you will heap burning coals on his head.” 21 Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.
Since I've spent the last few days analyzing hate, I thought it would be important to get on here and talk about the importance of true fasting again, but in a slightly different sense from before.
You see, as I've become more acquainted with hateful rhetoric, and even bothered to learn how to recognize covert symbols of hate, I've realized that we as followers of Christ are probably not doing enough in our everyday lives to live up to the command of "hate what is evil." It should never be said that the Bible commands us to hate other people, however in this one case it is very clear: we must take an unequivocal stand against evil. We see in this passage a dual responsibility, both to embrace good AND to resist evil. It is not enough for a gardener to love flowers; they must also hate weeds.
After what just happened in New Zealand, we need to make a bolder proclamation than ever that we as Christ followers are against violence towards outsiders. This shouldn't be a controversial statement, but for some reason the American church has been deafeningly silent on the issue of the human dignity of non-Americans. I blame Trump for this. While conservative America has always had some sort of excuse for why foreigners aren't "real" people, I don't think it's any stretch to say that a self-avowed nationalist who has consistently denigrated Muslims is responsible for the recent increase in xenophobia within this country.
The above passage of scripture calls us to love and be kind to others. You do not get to choose whom you will or will not include in that mandate, with the exception of "as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone." I would never have joined the military if I were a true pacifist, since some people will always have a mind bent on evil. In my opinion, we have a moral obligation to meet such people head on.
For those who abjure violence, I would remind you in the words of George Orwell that, "those who abjure violence can only do so because others are committing violence on their behalf." Rather than outsource your violence to police officers, military personnel, or others who could potentially abuse you as easily as the could protect you, why not take it upon yourself, as a person of strong moral conviction, to prepare yourself physically, mentally, and spiritually for the possibility that you may be called upon to resist evil in a morally responsible manner?