Blessed, Love your Enemies!

May 2, 2021 in Today's Devotion by TGV

Bible Study Guide/ Matthew 5, (40-BSG-5Y)/ Selected Devotional Thought(s) in Matthew 5/ Theme: Blessed, Enemies.


Thought # 1: The Beatitudes! “And seeing the multitudes, He went up on a mountain, and when He was seated His disciples came to Him. Then He opened His mouth and taught them, saying:” (Matthew 5:1–2, NKJV) Blessed are —

  • The Poor in spirit: will be given the Kingdom of Heaven (v. 3).
  • Those who Mourns: will be comforted (v. 4).
  • The Meek: will inherit the earth (v. 5).
  • Those who hungers and thirsts for Righteousness: will be filled (v. 6).
  • The Merciful: will obtain mercy (v. 7).
  • The Pure in heart: will see God (v. 8).
  • The Peacemakers: will be called the children of God (v. 9).
  • The Persecuted: will be given the Kingdom of Heaven (vv. 10–12).

Blessed are you when they revile and persecute you, and say all kinds of evil against you falsely for My sake. Rejoice and be exceedingly glad, for great is your reward in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you.” (Matthew 5:11–12, NKJV)

Three modes of persecution — Reviled and insulted; Slandered and falsely accused; Abused and killed. Joy is the attitude expected amidst persecution. The two reasons for joy — Great reward; the great examples: The OT Prophets. Apostle James writes: “My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.” (James 1:2–4, NKJV)


Thought # 2: Love Your Enemies! Perhaps this is the most difficult commandment of all. God loves his enemies, He expect us to love our enemies too. Christ prayed for Peter, even though he knew that he would reject him.  Christ showed honor to Judas, knowing that he would betray him. During His arrest in Gethsemane, one of the disciples, “struck the servant of the high priest and cut off his right ear” (Lk 22:50). What did Christ do? He healed the ear of the temple servant, even as he led Jesus to His trial. On the cross, Jesus prayed for His enemies, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they do.” (Luke 23:34). As he was being stoned to death, Stephen “knelt down and cried out with a loud voice, “Lord, do not charge them with this sin.” And when he had said this, he fell asleep” (Acts 7:60)

What kind of attitudes should we have towards our enemies? Love, do Good, Bless and Pray for them (Mt 5:44-45); Forgive them (Mt 6:12; Acts 7:59-60); Help and show kindness to them (Rom 12:20); Rejoice not in their misfortunes (Pr. 24:17-18); Win them with kindness (Rom 12:21).

Why should we love our enemies according to Mt 5:43-48? [1] Because God said so – “But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you.[2] Because God does so—“He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust” [3] Because our identity (who we are in Christ) demands is – “that you may be sons of your Father in heaven.” [4] Because God loved us first — “But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” (Romans 5:8, NKJV). We were lost.  We weren’t just lost, we were workers of evil.  We weren’t neutral to God, we were his enemies, working against his good laws and good kingdom.  We were leading others astray, we were blatantly tossing to the muck the good laws of our God.  And yet, even while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Beloved, it was when we were still God’s enemies (Col. 1:21 and Rom. 5:10) that He demonstrated His love for us. Through Jesus, God’s love brought salvation to us.

Our ability to love our enemies is directly tied to our willingness to let go of our anger, and to forgive.  This is not easy unless the Spirit of God dwells in us. We can always start by praying for our enemies. We can send out “peacemakers” to try to heal the divide and restore broken relationships. Praying is an act of mercy. Praying for our enemies is loving them like our Heavenly Father does. Praying changes our hearts “to start loving them.” Loving our enemies means seeing them as sinners (or, lost human beings) in need of the Saviour and the Father’s love! Start loving your enemy today.

Have a Good Night: “If your enemy is hungry, give him bread to eat; And if he is thirsty, give him water to drink; For so you will heap coals of fire on his head, And the Lord will reward you.” (Proverbs 25:21–22, NKJV)  “Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.” (Romans 12:21, NKJV)


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