Love your enemies…

This is a truly radical and potentially world-changing statement. It comes, of course, from the highest authority. From Matthew 5, Jesus instructs us as follows:

43You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ 44But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, 45so that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven. For he makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust.

Even many who don’t confess Christ as Lord should agree that this is how God would have us be. Two things bring this to mind.

The first is the recent bin Laden missive, offering us a “truce” if we but cease and desist from kicking terrorist butt in Afghanistan and Iraq. The second is the bloviating gasbags on the Senate Judiciary Committee as they tell us, ad infinitum, how bad Joe Alito is. A man, to paraphrase, whose garbage they are not fit to carry out.

Hold up, he says…am I making a direct comparison between the world’s number one terrorist and Ted Kennedy? Is this a trick question…no. The problem is how does one love such patently unlovable creatures as bin Laden and the likes of Ted Kennedy? Both are moral ciphers; both have been working for years to destroy our republic. Of the two, Kennedy is perhaps the graver threat, because he works from within the system.

Regardless of my politics or patriotism, we must love both. God loves them both, although He may have a rather serious q&a session for them when they die. My opinion is that both are destined to hell, to total separation from God at the end. But that’s just my opinion. God knows.

How does one love an evil man like bin Laden? Or a slimy unrepentant killer (of Mary Jo Kopeche) like Kennedy? Easy. We pray for their full conversion and repentance. There is no wordly evil so foul that God can’t forgive it*. At the same time, we, as realists, do our best to stop them from further heinous acts.

As we say in explosive ordnance disposal, first we render them safe. While we pray for their eternal souls.

*Excluding the possibility that bin Laden and Kennedy may also have blasphemed against the Holy Spirit

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  1. Mark Hunsaker · · Reply

    John Luke, your strong words are excellent and convicting. It is quite interesting how truth tends to punch one in the face rather that tip toe through the tulips?

    Recently my home church was involved in a political dispute that is far too boring to share here. Nonetheless there was a particular politician (who would quickly ally himself with Ted Kennedy) that literally said our church (and any other church for that matter) should not be allowed to do any sort of outreach of any kind in our community.

    As a result, he used every ounce of his political and social power to prevent our activities, which were well within the bounds of our local laws.

    Sadly, he prevailed. We were denied our request for a permit to have a preschool simply because he hates churches. It is that simple. Quite sad too.

    My reason for sharing this story is that while this politician is not necessarily a killer or destroyer of our republic, he is my enemy and your post reminded me, and convicted me…to love him. Not just forgive him (which I had been doing daily), but I must love him.

    Truth punches you in the face.


    And, so, I will love him. Thank you brother.

  2. John Luke · · Reply

    Mark, thank you for the comment.

    I’m no longer surprised by politicians who view the church of Christ as something to keep out of sight, out of mind. In love, I sometimes think that such men and women are embarrassed by the Gospel, and that this is their way of showing it.

    My post, by the way, was prompted at least in part by this week’s cover story in World Magazine on the martyred missionaries in Ecuador of 50 years ago.

    1 corinthians 13:13 says it all, and theirs was truly Christian love. We can but only hope to be a faint glimmer in emulating them.

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