Is it surprising that some preachers are hated? Well, it shouldn’t be. For people to hate them is nothing new. Listen to this passage:
Jehoshaphat asked, “Isn’t there a prophet of Yahweh here any more? Let’s ask him.” The king of Israel said . . . “There is one man . . . but I hate him because he never prophesies good about me, but only disaster” ( 1 Kings 22:8, HCSB).
The king of Judah was right in seeking God’s will through a prophet; the king pf Israel was wrong in hating the prophet. What a contrast!
Why did the latter hate the prophet? Because he did his job—he told the truth about the sins of the king and his people, and predicted God’s judgment upon them apart from repentance.
Today, we have no prophets (contrary to the views of a popular theological writer), but we have preachers who are as close to being prophets as anyone. When they do their job (fulfill their calling from God) they will frequently have to warn about the consequences of sin against God. When they do, they are often disliked (or possibly even hated) by those who listen. But they are as foolish for doing so as king Ahab, who lost his life as a result (v. 37).
Fools don’t listen. Will you listen—or will you too prove yourself a fool? There are still some preachers who will preach the truth, even though not appreciated for it. If you are fortunate enough to have one in your congregation, listen to him; don’t hate him for telling you the truth. Obey the Word of God as he proclaims it from the Scriptures!