“Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt love thy neighbor, and hate thine enemy. But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you…” Matthew 5:43-44
Love your enemies…bless them. So we can’t just flippantly say, “Oh, yeah…sure, I love them.” We are called to demonstrate that love. His Love. How is this possible when in actuality we desire to retaliate? Bless them? Really?!!?
Demonstrate is defined as: to clearly show the existence or truth of (something) by giving proof or evidence; to take part in a public demonstration. So love has a “look” – love looks like Jesus. He is our model for how to love and love well. He tells us not to retaliate, but rather bless them through prayer and by doing good towards them.
So how is this accomplished? There is only one way that we can love our enemies, for it goes against everything we feel and some of the things that we have been taught. First off, we are NOT to live by our feelings (more on that later in a personal testimony) or man’s doctrine, but by the Word of God. Secondly, it can ONLY be accomplished by the Spirit of God that dwells in those that are born again. If Jesus Himself said that no one was good but the Father (Mark 10:18), then how can we expect to do good without His Spirit?
And regarding feelings – does it seem fake when you bless and pray for your enemies? That is because our flesh wages war against the spirit (Galatians 5:17) and has no desire whatsoever to bless an enemy. This is when you must decide what will rule – your flesh or your spirit. I encourage you to not give the flesh a voice, for at every opportunity the flesh will chose against the spirit. So if your blessings seem difficult to do, strained, forced and even fake, I urge you brothers and sisters, to press on. When you do, the spirit will rise up in victory and your soul will reap the rewards of love, patience, peace, joy… Hallelujah!
So today I challenge you to CHOOSE LOVE!
(To choose love means to forgive. More on forgiving others in a future post.)