Have you ever heard anything so ridiculous?
[Jesus said,] “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 sons of your Father in heaven.”
Matthew 5:43-45 New International Version
THOUGHTS ABOUT TODAY’S VERSE…
No this verse is NOT a cruel joke, it is VERY true. Remember God is Love (Unconditional Love). We often talk about the privileges of being a child of God – forgiveness, salvation, a future in heaven with Him, the gift of the Holy Spirit, prosperity, healing, and health, and ultimate victory through Christ. One of the greatest privileges we get as children of God however, is the opportunity to act toward those who dislike and hate us in a way that reflects the character of God himself. Anyone can return hate for hate, but it takes a child of God to return a blessing and a prayer to their enemies. The last bit of that verse also indicates, to me anyway, that this action of loving, blessing, and praying for those who hate and despitefully use us is a necessary action, a condition if you will, to becoming a son or daughter of God. “Faith without works is dead!” Works = corresponding actions, actions involved in doing the Word of God in Faith. Because in doing the Word of God you work out your salvation through His grace.
Father, thank You for loving me while I was still an enemy to You. Thank You for offering the death of Your Son Jesus to offer me the chance to accept or reject Your love. As You have promised, You are pouring Your love into my heart so I may love even my enemies as You have loved me. Thank You Father that there are no “undesireables” when it comes t your love for mankind. Father, it is not by my might or by my power that I am able to love and pray for my enemies, but by the power of Your holy Spirit that works within me. Continue Lord to fill me afresh each and every day. Through Jesus, the gift of Your love, I pray.