“Love your enemies! Do good to them. Lend to them without expecting to be repaid. Then your reward from heaven will be very great, and you will truly be acting as children of the Most High, for he is kind to those who are unthankful and wicked.” Luke 6:35
Take a look at the verse again. Read it slowly and think about what it is saying. Then think about what we see, hear and read from Fundamentalist and many Evangelical organizations, churches, and even leaders within those movements when it comes to how we should treat our enemies. Who are our enemies you might ask? Here is a little list, not meant to be all-inclusive.
Abortionists, Muslims, liberals, Democrats, President Obama, gay, lesbian, and transgender people, atheists, evolutionists, Wiccans, and in general anyone that does not agree with our narrow, limited point of view. We have MADE them our enemies, and some of them return the favor. I will not delve into why they hate us in this post, but let’s be clear here that many in the church hate them as well. And we are talking about here is what Jesus told US to do in regard to our enemies. And most times we choose not to do it.
The love that Jesus is saying that we need to have toward the above individuals is the highest form of love. It is AGAPE love. We are to welcome them into our homes and lives, and we are to entertain them, serve them dinner, or take them out to dinner/a movie/the coffee shop, and to express deep fondness and love for them. But that is not enough according to Jesus.
He then says that we are to do good to them. We are to do them favors and to see them benefit from our help. We are to seek their good. He even said to give them your money if they ask without any expectation of being repaid. Hey, I didn’t say this stuff, Jesus did!
Why? As we mentioned in the last post, we do it so that God’s glory and goodness is reflected in our lives. God wants us to be His witnesses by reaching out to individuals, that may not like us, with tangible and real examples of love, grace, and mercy. Because that is what God is doing toward us and them
When people see us loving, then perhaps they may want to know why we are so unlike the rest of the world. And then we can tell them it is because of Jesus. But even if they don’t ask, we still love them unconditionally anyway.