Yes to Hating Sin, No to Hating Self – John Piper

Free From Self-Hatred – Joyce Meyer


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“The internal war you wage with yourself may not be seen by others,

but is always felt by you!” 

Author Unknown

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Yes it is possible to hate and love someone at the same time –

I do it to myself every day. ”

Author Unknown

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Beware of that monster called ‘self-hatred’.

John Green

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Thou canst not think worse of me than I do of myself.

Robert Burton

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(This YouTube Video is 11:25 Minutes in Length, Below is the Transcript)

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We have a follow-up question from a listener named Isaac, Pastor John.

In episode number 924 you said Christians are known as sin haters, I agree wholly but sometimes in living this out I become too self-focused. So what is the difference between hating sin. What you call for. And hating myself because I sin, which is so often what I feel.

What’s the difference between sin hate and self hate?

Let me first say something that will probably strike Isaac as depressing,

and then I hope because it’s true and because it’s real and because of the wider biblical context, be hope giving and not just depressing.

I think it is impossible to really hate our sin and know that this sin originates in my corrupt heart and

not hate that heart, that is hate my heart – my sinning self.

Insofar as I am corrupt, world loving, God hating, rebellious, and that is, who we all are without the regenerating work of the Holy Spirit.

Paul describes us in

Ephesians 2

Once we walked following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, and the spirit that now at work in the sons of disobedience among whom we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind and we’re by nature – it’s not alien to us – by nature, children of wrath like the rest of mankind

You-you can’t know yourself to be a child of wrath,

that is a person whom God is so angry with and not be angry with yourself.

If you’re in sync with God.

Now of course God enters into our lives with the power of the Spirit, the old man is crucified,

sins are forgiven, a new nature is given through rebirth,

the Holy Spirit takes up residence in our hearts

He begins to lead us in paths of righteousness,

we’re not the same people anymore that we once were in such awful rebellion.

So you might think well that’s-that’s the end of that self-hate.

There are two catches:

One is that Paul tells us to remember what we came from in

Ephesians 2:12

remember that you were at that time.

This is just 10 verses later than what I just read from Ephesians 2

…remember that you were at that time separated from Christ, alienated from the common wealth of Israel, strangers to the covenants of promise, having no hope without God in the world.

so remember-that don’t forget that.

Bring that to your mind, let it humble you.

Hate that old-self

The other catch is that,

Inspite of our newness in Christ the old nature must be seen, recognized,

now and put to death, now daily

put to death.

Paul said what is earthly and you reckon to be dead, that old nature.

You can’t put your old nature to death – if you love it.

In cases like this, you only kill what you hate.

It’s not just sin that you kill it’s the old you-that keeps trying to raise its head

and you must hate that old you and yes it is a real you.

I base that on Romans 7:24 where Paul cries out

wretched man that I am

NOT just wretched sin that I do,

He’s not calling the work of the Holy Spirit wretched, no he’s not

because he says in verse 18

I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is in my flesh.

Well he knows something good does dwelt in him,

the Holy Spirit dwells in him

a new nature dwells in him.

What he’s calling wretched is his old sinful nature

and the way he says it is

wretched man that I am

and he knows he’s still responsible for those acts crop up from his old nature.

So in that sense I think there is a genuine and proper self-hatred

that is essential to fighting the fight of faith.

Now here are two or three warnings

how that

what I just said can go hay-wire

Number One

I’ve already said

it would be sin if you hated the new you,

that the Holy Spirit is shaping after the imageof Christ.

Having every hint of godliness,

every degree of love to Christ

every mustard seed of faith

should cause you to feel thankful that God is at work in you

making you new

it’s a sin to hate this new work of God

don’t ever hate

what God has rocked in you by the power of the Holy Spirit

and he is at work in you

if you are born again

and here are two more warnings how things can go haywire.

Jesus bases his whole argument for self-denial on the preciousness of the human soul,

the value of everlasting existence

listen how he says it

if anyone

this is Mark 8:34

if anyone would come after me

let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me

Here’s His argument

for whoever would save his life will lose it.

Well you don’t want to lose it


whoever loses his life for my sake and the gospel’s

will save it

and you do want to save it

and then He adds

for what does it profit a man if he gain the whole world

and forfeit (or lose) his soul

What can man give in return for his soul.

The whole argument the basis of Jesus argument is

you should love your soul.

That is love it

in the sense of doing whatever it takes to save it.

So in this sense, we should never, never, never, hate our soul.

That is we should never act in a way that destroys the soul,

the whole world is acting as though they hate their soul by living in sin.

We should love our souls,

in the sense that we will do anything

we will deny ourselves anything

we will sell anything

we will go anywhere

we will believe Jesus to the max

including any self-denial

in order to save ourselves

that’s the way Jesus is arguing

so don’t ever become a self-hater

in the sense that you don’t care about saving your soul

but only destroying it.

and the last warning about how things can go hay wire

in this recommendation that there is a genuine self-hatred

that belongs to the Christian life.

Here’s the third warning

Don’t dwell on your past corruption

or on your present remaining corruption,

to the degree that it keeps you from leaning into hope with such joy

that you are set free to love

and here’s the text

Philippians 3:13

Brothers one thing I do forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead

I press on toward the goal of the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus

So notice the key words forgetting what lies behind.

So yes, remember your corruption Ephesians 2:12

enough to humble yourself and keep yourself utterly dependent on grace.

But forget your corruption if it ever keeps you back from pressing on

toward the goal of the prize of the upward call of God in Christ

with joy and hope and confidence and and love.

So Isaac, that’show you measure

whether your self-hatred is pathological and self-defeating or

whether it is Christ exalting and hope giving.

Does it throw you on to grace in Christ?

Does it intensify your love to Jesus and your confidence in His love for you and

His readiness to use you for His glory?

So say to yourself often

I am the Temple of the Holy Spirit!

I am NOT my own!

I was bought with a Price!

I will Glorify God in my body!

Yeah amen. Thank you Pastor John and thank you for the question Isaac. These are the wonderful questions that we really welcome with love getting them so thank you for sending us so many great questions over the years of course wecan’t respond to questions in writing and we can only get to a fraction of them on the air but your questionsr eally are important to us and they make this podcast possible so thank you for sending them in and for more details about this podcast or to catch up on old episodes or to subscribe to the audio feed so you can keep up on new episodes as we release them even to send us a question of your own go to our online home at desire and god org forward slashask Pastor John well tomorrow is ThanksgivingHappy Thanksgiving and we are gonn are turn on Friday we’re going to talk about a theme related to Thanksgiving but it’s essentially the question of are we over doing the anti prosperity gospel theme can we be so anti prosperity gospel that we become less thankful for the abundant gifts that God has showered into our lives it’s a timely question and comes in to us from a listener and we will address that on a Friday we’ll see you then

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(This YouTube Video is 3:50 Minutes in Length, Below is the Transcript)

What is your attitude toward yourself?


Do you like yourself?


We had a few people there,

but yo- know you know

I spent a lot of years not liking myself

Probably even in some ways dealing with some self-hatred

certainly some self rejection because a lot of what happened to me when I was growing up

I thought some how or another it was my fault and

so first when they start by saying if-i fsomebody

has mistreated you

devalued you

abused you

criticized you

judged you

done something that has left you wounded

their ignorance is not your fault.

Don’t pay them-don’t be mad at them

because if you do, that-that will just continue giving them power over your life.

The thing you want to do is just realize the source

shake it off

say sleep on and go on with your life

amen and to be honest I’ve tried for so long to love people after I became a Christian

and started really studying the Word of God

I knew I heard a lot of messages about loving people and I could see that from

the word that God wanted us to love people and

I wanted to love people and

I wanted to be patient with people and

I wanted to be merciful to people and-and

I just couldn’t seem to do it and

it got so frustrating to me because

I felt like my heart was right

I wanted to do the right thing but

I just couldn’t seem to pull it off and

God began many years ago revealing to me

that the reason why I couldn’t love other people was because

I didn’t love myself

I couldn’t be merciful to other people because

I didn’t know how to receive God’s mercy for me

I was hard on myself and

if you’re hard on yourself

you’re gonna be hard on everybody else

to come on the mand

so one of the things that I’ve learned over these 42 years

that I’ve had the rare privilege of teaching God’s Word is that

you can’t give away what you don’t have

so you might as well stop trying to give something to other people

that you don’t have yourself and see God equips us

He provides us with everything that we need to get out in the world and

do everything that He wants us to do

you’ve got what it takes [Applause] but

if you don’t know it then no matter what

you have if

you don’t know it

it won’t do you any good and if it’s not doing you any good then it can’t get through you to do somebody else any good and I know many of you’ve probably heard me teach this I don’t care

if you’ve heard it a thousand times

if the devil can get you to not like yourself he has already won the battle in your life

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