Tuesday, December 27, 2011
I often hear Christians use the phrase "love the sinner and hate the sin" when responding to the topic of homosexuality. Little do they know that this statement is hated by many gay and lesbian people.
"Love the sinner and hate the sin." We don't typically use this to refer to our friend, our grandma, our neighbour or the pastor at church. No, it's used to refer to someone whom we see as being different than us, someone who is a sinner unlike me and you who are good Christians. It labels people. It puts distance between us. It others them.
And despite the first half of the saying, the other person in the relationship rarely feels the love.
n.b. This phrase is not in the Bible. It "apparently comes from a letter that St. Augustine wrote to some contentious nuns. Augustine's phrase, "cum dilectione hominum et odio vitiorum," "with love of persons and hatred of sins," is used parenthetically, and does not even mention "sinners." (source)