IN THE IMAGE OF GOD
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Journey With Jesus
Love Your Enemies (Matthew 5:44)
This is an experimental page. It is written as if it were coming from the heart of Jesus to his followers. It was written with the help of an AI tool I use in business. You might ask, isn’t that wrong? The most popular Christian writers have a group of people collaborating with them to write their books. Some use ghost writers who write most of their books to make the authors main ideas engaging for the reader. This is an example of how one man can promote Christlike living using technology as my main collaborator. Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments.
Dear child of the Most High,
In the Sermon on the Mount, I spoke words that may seem contradictory to your human understanding, words that urge you to love those who despise you and pray for those who persecute you. Today, I want to delve deeper into the words I spoke when I said, “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 5:44).”
I know it is challenging and seems unnatural, to love those who have wronged you. I experienced the challenge when I walked on earth. Remember I was crucified for no reason when I died for your sins.
Yet, in this command, I invite you to rise above your human instincts. Instead of retribution and anger, reflect the divine love of your Father in Heaven. He loved you even when you were not lovable.
Love, my dear ones, is the most potent force in the universe. It knows no boundaries. It does not discriminate between a friend or an enemy. True, divine love is offered to everyone. Just as the sun shines on the just and the unjust alike (Matthew 5:45), God’s love encompasses every one of His children, regardless of their actions.
When I ask you to love your enemies, I am asking you to emulate the love the Father has for you. Be an earthly expression of His divine love. Break free from the chains of bitterness, resentment, and hatred, which only bind your spirit and hinder your spiritual growth. Choose to respond with love, even when met with hatred.
Loving your enemies does not mean condoning or accepting their harmful actions. It is about recognizing that they, like you, are children of our Heavenly Father. They are also often lost in the maze of their imperfections. Loving your enemies is about hoping and praying for their transformation, that they may find their way back to the light. I am the Light (John 8:12).
Consider this: when you pray for those who persecute you, you are not merely performing a charitable act. You are also transforming yourself. In your prayer, you move beyond your ego, embrace humility, and align yourself closer to our Father’s divine love. Each prayer for your enemy is a step towards your spiritual evolution, your sanctification. It’s a testament to the strength of love over hatred.
Additionally, blessing those who curse you, doing good to those who hate you, is not a sign of weakness but a reflection of inner strength and spiritual maturity. It demonstrates your ability to rise above personal pain, to choose love over hatred, and peace over conflict.
Remember, my beloved, in issuing this command, I am not asking you to embark on this journey alone. I am with you, and so is our Father, every step of the way. When you stumble and fall, reach out in prayer, and you will find the strength to carry on.
In the end, loving your enemies is about transcending the limitations of earthly love and reflecting the infinite, divine love of God. It’s about becoming a beacon of love and forgiveness in a world often torn apart by hatred and conflict. I know that it will be a challenging journey, but it is one that brings you closer to your divine self, closer to my likeness. Loving your enemies will be one way you will bring the Kingdom of Heaven to earth.
So please, my dear ones, embrace this divine paradox of love. Respond to hatred with love, to curse with blessing, to persecution with prayer. Strive to love your enemies, as your Father in Heaven loves you. Our Father also loves them.
In Love and Light,
Following the commandment of Jesus in Matthew 5:44 to “Love your enemies” can be challenging. But it’s not impossible. Here are some practical examples of how you can apply this teaching in your daily life:
- Forgive and Let Go: When someone wrongs you, your natural instinct might be to hold onto anger and resentment. However, to love your enemies, you should make an effort to forgive them. This doesn’t mean you have to forget or accept their harmful actions, but you should try to release the negative feelings associated with them. By doing so, you free yourself from the cycle of resentment and open up space for understanding and healing.
- Pray for Them: Another profound way of loving your enemies is to pray for them. This might seem counterintuitive, but in your prayers, you can ask for their well-being, their growth, and their enlightenment. By doing so, you actively wish for God to bless them and make them better. If their actions toward you were clearly sin, ask God to reveal that sin to them and help them avoid it in the future. This demonstrates true Christian love.
- Respond with Kindness: If someone behaves negatively towards you, respond with kindness rather than mirroring their hostility. This not only disarms the situation but also gives them an opportunity to reconsider their actions.
- Resist Gossip: If you are upset with someone, it can be tempting to talk badly about them to others. However, loving your enemies means resisting this temptation and refusing to engage in harmful gossip or slander about them.
- Seek to Understand: Often, people act out of fear, pain, or misunderstanding. While it’s not easy, try to understand where your ‘enemy’ is coming from. This doesn’t excuse their behavior, but it can help you see them as a fellow human being who is struggling, allowing you to respond with empathy and compassion.
- Do Good to Them: This is a bold step, but consider doing something nice for the person who wronged you. This doesn’t have to be something grand. It could be as simple as a kind word or a friendly gesture. In doing so, you live out the commandment to “do good to them that hate you Matthew 5:44; Luke 6:27-28)”.
- Respect Their Humanity: Acknowledge that everyone, including your enemies, are human beings who make mistakes. This mindset doesn’t condone their actions but maintains their dignity and your integrity.
Remember, these actions are not about being a doormat or ignoring harmful behavior. Instead, they’re about breaking the cycle of hate and negativity, and choosing to respond with love and compassion, just as Jesus taught. They demonstrate the strength of divine love to transform even the most challenging relationships and situations.
Loving your enemies, as commanded by Jesus in Matthew 5:44, is a divine call to embody the unconditional love of God in our interactions with others. This radical love carries several profound kingdom benefits, transforming not only our relationships but our hearts as well.
- Spiritual Growth: Loving your enemies is a challenging practice that encourages spiritual growth. It calls you to rise above human instincts of revenge and bitterness, and align your actions with divine love and mercy. By doing so, you come closer to embodying the virtues of the Kingdom of God: love, compassion, forgiveness, and peace.
- Inner Peace: Holding onto anger and resentment often leads to internal turmoil. By choosing to love and forgive your enemies, you let go of these negative emotions, leading to a greater sense of peace and wellbeing. This inner peace reflects the tranquility of God’s Kingdom.
- Unity and Reconciliation: Jesus’ command to love your enemies opens a pathway to unity and reconciliation. It breaks down walls of hostility and builds bridges of understanding and respect. This unity echoes the harmonious relationships envisioned in the Kingdom of Heaven.
- Demonstrating God’s Love: By loving your enemies, you mirror God’s universal love, which is extended to all His children, irrespective of their actions. This practice serves as a testament to the transformative power of divine love, drawing others towards the love and grace found in God’s Kingdom.
- Developing Christlike Character: The command to love our enemies helps to mold us into the likeness of Christ, who loved and forgave even those who crucified Him. This development of a Christlike character is a significant aspect of Kingdom living.
- Promoting Justice and Healing: When you respond to harm with love, it disrupts the cycle of hurt and revenge. It can serve as a powerful catalyst for justice and healing, a theme central to God’s Kingdom.
- Eternal Rewards: Jesus assures us that our loving actions, particularly towards those who are difficult to love, do not go unnoticed by God. He promises in Matthew 5:46-48 that the rewards for such love are not just in this life but in the eternal life of the Kingdom of Heaven.
In essence, loving your enemies brings the Kingdom of God into your everyday life, fostering spiritual maturity, peace, reconciliation, and a Christlike character. It’s a testament to the transformative power of God’s love, extending His Kingdom of peace and justice in a world often riddled with conflict and hate.
Here are some questions that could help your examine your attitudes towards loving your enemies. Answer them honestly and openly. Learning to love your enemies is a continuous process of growth and learning, guided by the love and grace of Jesus.
- Can you identify anyone in your life whom you consider an ‘enemy’? Why do you consider them so?
- How do you generally react when someone hurts or offends you? How does your reaction align with Jesus’ command to love your enemies?
- Can you recall an instance where you chose to respond with love and kindness towards someone who wronged you? How did it feel and what was the outcome?
- Do you find it difficult to forgive those who have wronged you? If so, why? What steps can you take to foster a spirit of forgiveness?
- Have you ever prayed for your enemies? If not, what are the barriers that prevent you from doing so? If yes, how has it impacted you and your feelings towards them
- How does holding onto resentment or anger towards someone impact your life and your relationship with God?
- Can you think of a situation where you could actively do good to someone who dislikes or hates you? What might that look like?
- How does the idea of loving your enemies challenge your current understanding of love?
- Can you identify any biases or prejudices that might hinder you from loving certain people? How can you address these biases?
- What practical steps can you take in the coming week to better love your enemies as Jesus taught?