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Principles for Dealing with Enemies (19 of 26)
INTRODUCTION: So far in our series of Metaphors we've dealt with:
• Our relationship with God - Toward God we are to be a Living Sacrifice.
• Our relationship with each other - Body and a Family
But today Paul changes the focus to something that is almost unpalatable. Today we look at how God would have us to love to our enemies.
Love your enemies??? Are you serious? It is one thing to love a friend; it's one thing to love a relative, even a stranger; it is another thing entirely to love your enemy. IT'S UN-AMERICAN, IT'S UN-HUMAN.
As a matter of fact, I like not liking some people.
Nevertheless, at times Our Lord Jesus Christ points His nail scarred hand toward the person you least expect and says go love that one.
Now before we get into the text let me clarify a few things:
1. Enemies are assumed - Both in our text here as well as Mat. 5, Luke 6, God assume that we will have enemies. Sometimes we get the idea that if a person has enemies he or she must be doing something wrong. The fact is, Jesus had and Jesus has enemies.
• One of the most quoted OT passages in the NT - Mark 12:36 (NASB95) 36 "David himself said in the Holy Spirit, 'The Lord said to my Lord, "Sit at My right hand, Until I put Your enemies beneath Your feet." ' - Messiah will have enemies and they will loose.
• We are repeatedly told that certain people are enemies of the Gospel - Philippians 3:18 (NASB95) 18 For many walk, of whom I often told you, and now tell you even weeping, that they are enemies of the cross of Christ,
• Earlier in Romans 11:28 Paul said of unbelieving Jews, (NASB95) 28 From the standpoint of the gospel they are enemies for your sake...
• To the Magician Bar-Jesus Paul said, Acts 13:10 (NASB95) 10 and said, "You who are full of all deceit and fraud, you son of the devil, you enemy of all righteousness...
• We are told that in the last days ...
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