Anyone who keeps up with the news today can easily see how the world has ramped up their hatred toward both Christians and Jews. From religious extremists to liberal atheists the attacks on those with Judeo-Christian values have grown in number and in intensity. Death threats have become actual attacks on synagogues and church assemblies. The attacks from the media have fueled the fire of hatred and there is great momentum around the world to eliminate anything that has to do with Judaism and Christianity. Yet, in many countries around the world, it goes much further than this. In our world, there is a growing push to eliminate anything or anybody having any type of connection with a God. This includes all religions, even those that are pagan, to cleanse the world of any notion of God. There is no doubt that the one behind all of this is none other than the spirit of this world, Satan.
Hence, it is not difficult to understand why people in this world who embrace a belief in God demonstrate a growing hatred toward those who persecute them. However, we who are true Christians need to gain a deeper understanding of what our place is in all of this. How should we deal with all of this growing hatred around the world? I know I have had my moments where I experienced hatred toward what is happening and in doing so misplaced that hatred toward those who are carrying out these godless acts. Far too many times, I have had to seek the Lord’s forgiveness for my misplaced thoughts toward those who carry out these acts. Although my actions were no different from when Peter cut off the ear of the high priests servant in the garden, we must understand that this man was just carrying out Satan’s work there. Jesus demonstrated how we should act toward others in these circumstances. He said, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing” (Luke 23:34).
Thus, we must learn to love those who are used by Satan. This includes those who choose to make themselves our enemies. Jesus said, “But to those of you who will listen, I say: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you. If someone strikes you on one cheek, turn to him the other also. And if someone takes your cloak, do not withhold your tunic as well. Give to everyone who asks you, and if anyone takes what is yours, do not demand it back. Do to others as you would have them do to you. If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners love those who love them. If you do good to those who do good to you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners do the same. And if you lend to those from whom you expect repayment, what credit is that to you? Even sinners lend to sinners, expecting to be repaid in full. But love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them, expecting nothing in return. Then your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High; for He is kind to the ungrateful and wicked. Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful.” (Luke 6:27-36).
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Love Your Enemies
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