Sunday, 20 November 2016

Love Your Enemy

Scripture: Luke 6 v 35: "But love ye your enemies, and do good, and lend, hoping for nothing again, and your reward shall be great, and ye shall be the children of the Highest: for He is kind to the unthankful and the evil."
Romans 12 v 14 - 16: "Bless them which persecute you: bless, and curse not.  Rejoice with them that do rejoice, and weep with them that weep. Be of the same mind one toward another. Mind not high things, but condescend to men of low estate. Be not wise in your own conceits."

It is always difficult to love sinners the way God does, to be kind to ungrateful, evil people is often beyond our ability. The media is full of the atrocities of ISIS - the destructive Islamic psychopaths running rampant in the areas of Iran, Iraq and Syria. What the media don't report is what Christians in those areas are doing.

Believers are taking these evil people into their homes, even after they have tortured and killed their family members.  Christians have given them food, forgiveness, love and the gospel. Hundreds, if not thousands, of militants have converted to Christianity through the love and kindness of God's people.

Christianity is a way of life given to us by the Father, through His Son, Jesus Christ.  It is not a religion!!!  All religions are manufactured by human beings to please and appease a divine being through rituals and rules that use fear to keep the adherents from leaving.  They threaten people with persecution, rejection and death if they change their religious stance.

Our God gave us a free will to choose whom we will serve, and that is what religious freedom should be like.  The religions that cause wars, death, hardship and bondage are what He would like to spare us from, but its our own choice.  He offers us His incorruptible, sinless, holy beauty in exchange for wiping away our sins.  Or we can join ISIS and crucify His people, rape His handmaidens, and destroy everything precious, but face consequences of eternal separation from God.

However, He has promised mercy and forgiveness to anyone that comes to Him in sincere repentance and humility, confessing their sins and becoming born again.  The sinners of the world are won by love, God's love shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Spirit. Its the one thing Satan and his people cannot copy. His best display of love is just lust. The true, pure love of Christians will  attempt to conquer the hardest, meanest heart. 

I am reminded of a true story, a testimony from Holland. A factory owner saw his factory being broken into late one Friday night. He drove up to where the robbers truck was parked and helped them fill it with the goods out of his warehouse. The astonished robbers asked who he was. He said I am the owner.

"Why are you doing this?" they asked. He answered, "Because Jesus loves you, I love you, and I can withhold nothing from you, I don't want God to judge for stealing from me, so I would rather give it to you!" The truck sped off. On Sunday afternoon the factory owner noticed that same truck at his warehouse offloading everything they had taken. He asked why and they said, we could not steal from someone who loves us, we want to receive Jesus as our Lord and live honestly from now on.

We are here to extend the Kingdom of God as His Ambassadors. The greatest asset we have is love that comes from our Father, for God is love. You have never truly loved until you have loved an enemy. In John 15 v 9 -11, Jesus says: "As the Father hath loved me, so have I loved you: continue ye in my love.  If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father's commandments, and abide in his love. These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full."

Jesus came into this world to save sinners, if we want to be like Him we must be like-minded and armed with the same intentions.  Nothing blesses Him more, and He will work with you through the Holy Spirit to break through the fear, doubt, misinformation, lies and idolatry that binds the souls of men to religious bondage.  They may be your enemies but through the power of the Blood of Jesus they can be converted into your brother's and sisters in Christ.

Prayer: Heavenly Father, You loved us while we were yet sinners.  Your love sent Jesus to the Cross to remove us from death and destruction in Hell. We cannot pick and choose who deserves love, we must love one another as You love us. We must love our enemies and win them out of a loveless world into Your glorious Kingdom. In Jesus' name. Amen.