Love Sinners, Hate the Cliches

Something has been bugging the snot out of me this week.  I finally figured it out.. it is those annoying evangelical cliches. 

On in particular I have heard way too much the past few days is “love the sinner, hate the sin”.  I am pretty damn sick of it.

Many Christians keep throwing around this ridiculous statement, and it is a saying that goes against the very scripture they read and put their faith in.  I wonder why they keep spouting it off like it is written in stone?

It was actually a quote by Gandhi, not Jesus.

In the bible there is no separation ever between the sinner and sin.  You cannot separate them out.  It is impossible.  If you love someone (and you should love everyone), you cannot hate how they are to themselves.  If you do, you are judging.

This cliche relates to sin as a general concept.  The problem with trying to narrow this generality to particular sins is that we have a habitude to perceive sins differently.  For instance, why is it that this saying is always geared toward homosexuality, but we rarely hear it talked about when it comes to other sins like pride or greed, or really any other sin.  I believe the fact that this cliche is rarely used outside the context of homosexuality proves ungodly partiality, and how those that spout it relate to those around them.

I feel when people use this saying in their “Christian” circles, the claim to “love the sinner, hate the sin” usually only applies to sins the person doing the hating DOES NOT commit. 

Isn’t it convenient how that works?

It is basically saying.. while I am busy hating YOUR sin, I seem to have forgotten about my own.

I think Jesus had something to say about that… hold on I think I have something in my eye 🙂

So, while you cliche users are busy hating the sin in the lives of others, what you are really doing is focusing on those sins.  The fact is, in the act of condemning homosexuals (which this adage is so often used for), people who are quick to point out their hatred for the sin of homosexuality are, in effect, dealing with what they perceive as sin in the lives of others, when Jesus commands that they be concerned about their OWN sins instead.

Maybe we should make a new saying …  Love sinners, hate the cliches!

4 thoughts on “Love Sinners, Hate the Cliches

  1. I think it was in “Love is an Orientation” that the author wrote about that “love the sinner hate the sin” cliche. It is terribly judgmental and not loving at all. Great post.

    1. Thanks Jeremy. You would not believe how many times I have heard that saying this week.. crazy.

      It is like someone busted open the cliche pinata.

      Sometimes I wonder if they even know what they are saying.

      “Love is an Orientation” is an awesome book. The author hits on a lot of really great points, and I do believe this cliche was one of them. Highly recommend everyone read it.

  2. Thank you! As a preacher, I hate when I hear my colleagues resort to cliches. Ministers who perpetuate cliches should be…….

    Stay blessed…john

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