Does God have the capacity to “hate”?
We have all heard someone say things like, “This is how we do it here.”
Or, “What sets us apart from everyone else is our vision which is ___________”.
Or, “What we believe you and everyone else, here, should be doing is ____________”.
“What I think you should be is ____________”.
(I, I, I, Me, me, me, mine, mine, mine.)
Smug: Having excessive pride in oneself, a high estimation of one’s own ideas or one’s achievements.
self satisfied, complacent, self-congratulatory, more or less superior, pleased with oneself, self-approving, well pleased, proud of oneself, somewhat better than others, self-centered
Smug is similar to the word proud, found in the Bible: Strong’s bible concordance #5244 ὑπερήφανος huperephanos hoop-er-ay’-fan-os
1) showing one’s self above others, overtopping, conspicuous above others, pre-eminent
2) with an overweening estimate of one’s means or merits, despising others or even treating them with contempt, haughty
synonyms for word “proud” found in the bible: ἀλαζών is properly a boaster, who tells great things concerning his own prowess and achievements, with the implied idea that many of his claims are false. This word naturally describes a trait which manifests itself in contact with one’s fellow men, not one which exists simply within the heart.
ὑπερήφανος describes one who thinks too highly of himself, describing a trait which is simply internal, not referring primarily to external manifestation, although this is implied. It means one who is proud, the external manifestation when it appears being in the form of arrogance in dealing with others.
You see, smugness is the conviction that you are, at least, just a little bit better than other people.
This would be arrogance if it wasn’t also mixed with a pinch of humility.
Smug people know they’re better, and the fact that they’re also humble about it makes them even better still.
No wonder they’ve got that annoying smile.
Ughhhh. I have to admit, I have found myself exhibiting some of these things at times. God, please help me.
Listen to what Proverbs 6:16 says about smugness or PRIDE:
“There are six things which the LORD hates,
Yes, seven which are an abomination to Him:
17Haughty eyes, a lying tongue, “
(yes, there are five more, but we can stop here for now)
So, is there a way I tell if I am being smug?
Here are a few things I might need to watch for.
1. If I think my answer is the only correct answer, I might be smug.
2. If other people annoy me for no reason other than the fact they are there, I might be smug.
3. If I am always, even a little, critical of the places I go and the people I encounter (or see), I might be smug.
4. If I struggle with even the meaning of humility, I might have a problem with being smug.
5. If I really dislike smug people, I might have a real problem with being smug, myself.
6. If I take extreme pleasure and find extraordinary joy in seeing a smug person embarrassed or humiliated, I might have a problem with personal smugness.
There’s more we could list, but we all get the idea.
This is a serious matter, but, here is a funny routine, by comedian Brian Regan, about this matter (funny, if it weren’t so true)
THE ME MONSTER https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vymaDgJ7KLg
Let’s pray for one another to rid ourselves anything that displeases God.
And, while searching for humility, maybe a good place to start would be to remember that “Greater love has no one than this, that one lay down his life for his friends.” John 15:13
Your brother and friend,
PS – Here is a great sermon by Billy Graham on this and related matters. It might help us all. https://billygraham.org/decision-magazine/september-2011/things-god-hates/