Love Your Enemies
Yesterday, we talked about who we’re supposed to love. In my reading this morning, I came across this section of scripture. When we love those who love us, we have our reward. Anyone can love those who love us. We like the most of the people who appreciate us. I think this challenge in the latter part of Matthew 5 doesn’t contradict 1 John at all, because, like I said yesterday, I believe the term translated “brother” in that verse means “fellow man.” Here Jesus tells us that we must love those who don’t love us. Every act demonstrated by the life of Jesus backs up that claim. Scripture calls us to love people who don’t love us.
When Jesus washed the disciples feet, notice that Judas was included. Judas didn’t leave to betray Jesus until after Jesus washed everyone’s feet and gave his lesson (See John 13:27). We’re clearly called to love people who don’t love us. This is one of the key ways Jesus becomes visible in our world. If we content or battle with our enemies all the time, we don’t glorify Jesus. We glorify ourselves and our beliefs and our ideas. But when we lay down our ideas and our arguments and serve our enemies, Jesus becomes visible.
Who do you need to serve today? Who do you know that might have something against you? Are you willing to ask Jesus to show you how you can grow your love for them? Remember, we’re not talking about the emotion. We’re talking about love that seeks the best for the other person. We love them by doing what’s best for them. If you can’t do anything else, you can pray and ask God to give you ideas of ways to serve them. Act on behalf of someone who is not your first choice today.
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