“If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you. If ye were of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you” (Jn. 15:18-19).
Why does the world hate us? Because Jesus chose us out of the world – therefore the world hates us. And what did Christ choose us for?
Romans 8 says: “For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren. Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified.”
So the world hates Christians because Jesus chose them to be conformed to His image, and He does that by justifying them and glorifying them. The world hates the righteousness of Jesus. The world hates His goodness and glory. And when God justifies a sinner, He declares that sinner righteous and perfect in His sight. And therefore, the world hates those whom God has justified.
This table is a table for justified sinners. It is not for religious people. It is not for those who think they are somehow good enough. And all of this is related to how you will handle the hatred of the world.
If you come here like the pharisee in the parable, saying that you have tithed and fasted, that you have voted correctly or posted the right hashtag or read the right book, you are treating this as some kind of reward, and you are trying to justify yourself. And all the slanders and mockery will matter to you. You can be steered and manipulated.
But if you come as the publican, beating your chest and crying out for mercy, knowing that your only hope is Christ, you are coming justified. You are coming with no righteousness of your own. And this bread and wine is for you. These are emblems of God’s mercy, the righteousness of Christ for you. And if Christ is your righteousness, then the hatred and lies of the world are meaningless to you. Who cares what they think? All we have is Christ, and Christ is all we need.
So come and welcome to Jesus Christ.