But love your enemies, and do good, and lend, expecting nothing in return, and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High, for he is kind to the ungrateful and the evil. Be merciful, even as your Father is merciful. [Luke 6:35-36]
Wow, that’s a tough one. Love my enemies? Do good to them and lend to them? Expect nothing in return? This seems to be asking a lot. And why should I do all of this since my enemies have very little interest in loving me or doing good to me or even lending to me?
In a culture of, “an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth”, we are not used to returning good for evil. If someone hurts you then you withhold love and goodness as a form of punishment. But more than that, we often withhold love and goodness as a way to protect ourselves from further injury and pain. We have a tendency to distance ourselves from our enemies
But this is not the way of the Gospel.
Instead, Jesus says love your enemies. What better way to proclaim the Gospel than to show love to those who are not expecting it or to those the world is not expecting you to show love to. This is the whole “heaping burning coals on their head” (Romans 12:20-21) thing; that we should not be overcome by evil but over come evil with good. A tall order. A difficult task. An awesome command.
Lord have mercy and help me.
But consider something else: Who are we to call people evil when we ourselves are evil? That’s right, God shows love and goodness and mercy to you and me; filthy sinners; evil; enemies of God. God sent Jesus to die for us because we are evil and sinful. God did not withhold his love from us even though in the economics of this world he had every right to do so. This, my friends, is what makes God’s love through Jesus Christ so amazing…
Therefore, what better way to show God’s love than to love those we consider enemies, because who knows, we might win a new friend. Better yet, we might win a new brother/sister in Christ.
As God loves you through Jesus Christ, love one another…EVERYONE, to the praise and glory of God our Father.
Have a glorious and blessed day 🙂
The Pastor -|—