Matthew 5:43-45a “You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be children of your Father in heaven.”
Luke 6:27-28 “But to you who are listening I say: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you,28 bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you.
This week I have been struggling to love and to pray for those who persecute, harass and/or mistreat me and my family. This decision may baffle non-Christians, and yet this is the lifestyle to which we (as Christians) are called to live.
Matthew 16:24 “Then Jesus said to his disciples, “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me.”
A main doctrine taught by Jesus is that we are to love all people regardless of how they treat us.
Although people set themselves up as enemies against us, we (as Christians) must keep in mind that these same people are in desperate need of a saving relationship with Jesus and an understanding of His authority over their lives. The Bible teaches us to love our persecutors just as Jesus Himself loved those who betrayed Him, just as Jesus loved those who beat and battered His body, just as Jesus loved those who falsely accused Him and murdered Him. So we pray sincerely that our enemies might see the light and enter into His Kingdom!
Knowing Who Your True Enemy Really Is…
The Bible says that our true enemy is the devil. Ephesians 6:12 “For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.” Therefore, we should not take our anger out on our fellow brother or sister, rather we should recognize that behind the flesh and blood of our enemies ultimately lies Satan at work in their inner being.
The Situation Seems Helpless! Can Things Really Change?
It’s not easy to imagine that our enemies as bad as they are to transform before our own eyes… I ask myself, “could he ever turn away from sin and come to Christ?” Mark 10:27 says, “What seems impossible to us is possible with God.”
Let’s put our faith to work! Do you have an enemy? I challenge you to pray for this person that he/she may repent and come to their senses, pray that they Pray that they will rid themselves of “anger, rage, malice, slander, and filthy language from [their] lips” Colossians 3:8. Pray that God will rescue them from the dominion of darkness and bring them “into the kingdom of the Son He [the Father] loves, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins” Colossians 1:13-14.
Jesus died for His enemies… Are you willing to follow Him, carry your cross and do the same?