25 However, this is so that the word written in their law might be fulfilled that they hated Me without reason.
Perhaps all of us have had the experience of having been blamed for something without reason.
I remember that on one occasion I was caned at school for something that I did not do. I was canned without a reason. (However, there were probably other occasions when I didn’t get caned but did deserve to be!). None of us likes to be blamed for things we are not guilty of, but it happens to us all at times.
Jesus said that he was being hated for no reason at all, and He said that this was to fulfil what was written in the Jewish law.
To what law does Jesus refers? To discover this we must look back into the Old Testament. One scripture is a Psalm of David, it is Psalm 35.19. In this Psalm David laments his unjust treatment:
Don’t let my treacherous enemies rejoice over my defeat. Don’t let those who hate me without cause gloat over my sorrow – (NLT).
We do not know to whom David was referring. It could have been during the trials he had at the hands of King Saul, his predecessor. This was before David became King. On the other hand it could have been towards the end of his reign, during the rebellion of his son Absalom.
Whatever period David writes about it is a time of unjust hatred. This is also seen as a prophecy regarding the treatment of Jesus during His earthly ministry. Jesus had not done any harm to anyone. He came only to save the lost, such was His love for all mankind.
There is another Psalm of David with similar expressions:
Those who hate me without cause are more numerous than the hairs on my head.
These enemies who seek to destroy me are doing so without cause.
They attack me with lies, demanding that I give back what I didn’t steal – Psalm 69.4.
David had his enemies who could see no good in him, and who were quick to hate him just because of who he was.
This verse is again a prophecy concerning Jesus, and in all probability it is these verses to which Jesus was referring.
False accusations and hatred of Jesus is also the lot of those who follow Him.