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Hatred Contrasted with Love
Proverbs 10:12 Updated American Standard Version (UASV)
12 Hatred stirs up strife,
but love covers all transgressions.
Hatred stirs up strife: This level of hatred (שִׂנְאָה sinah) is an emotion of extreme intense dislike or hatred of others, which includes feelings of hostility, that can lead to actions of opposition. The Hebrew verb (teorēr) rendered stirs up means to be agitated, excited, or aroused to action. The Hebrew noun (מְדָן medan) rendered strife, which is in the plural, refers to bitter conflict, often heated violent dissension between two people.
Hatred produces contentions in human society that result from extreme intense dislike or hatred, awakening some to violent actions in the form of a bitter conflict. Actually, provoking another person needlessly is a manifestation of hatred.
but love covers all transgressions: The opposite end of hatred is love (אַהֲבָה ahabah), which is a strong relationship with a harmonious, positive emotion of regard and a strong affection for another. Love covers (כֶּסֶא kese or כֶּסֶה keseh), which is used metaphorically for forgiving, that is, removing the guilt of wrongdoing, as an extension of hiding or concealing the transgression. The Hebrew term rendered transgression (פֶּשַׁע pesha) means wantonness (depravity, debauchery, immorality, shamelessness), crime, wrongdoing, an offense against a law, duty, or moral principle. This is an overstepping, namely, exceeding a moral limit or boundary. Biblically speaking, this would be crossing the line and saying, feeling, thinking, or doing something that is contrary to God’s personality, standards, ways, will, and purposes, as set out in the Scriptures. It is breaking God’s moral law. However, in the book of Proverbs, it is sometimes used for those who have committed personal offenses against another.
Hatred is like a disease in humanity today. We are constantly being told that we are living in an enlightened world that is far removed from the past’s savagery. Yet, we see constant evidence of the sad truth expressed here at every level of society: “Hatred stirs up strife.” Godly contains empathy and understanding, as it does not expect perfection from imperfect people. This kind of love is willing to put up with a lot. When someone makes a mistake, rather than becoming angry over it and sharing it with others, godly love will cause us to seek to overlook and protect the erring one when there has been no serious wrongdoing. Through mistreatment as a Christian in this fallen world, love “covers all transgressions.” If we possess a deep love for God and a love for neighbor, we will cover over the mistakes and shortcomings of others. First, love covers all transgressions (personal offenses against you); it does not reveal them to others. Then, it forgives and forgets all transgressions (personal offenses against you) as though they never took place.
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