He Truly Loved His Enemies (I Samuel 1-4)

11 How much more, when wicked men have killed a righteous man in his own house on his bed, shall I not now require his blood at your hand and destroy you from the earth? II Samuel 4:11

If I have been asked this question once I have been asked it a thousand times. Here is the question: How is it possible for one to love his or her enemies? The question usually comes when a Christian either reads Matthew 5:43-48 or the Holy Spirit deeply convicts the Christian of their hardness of heart toward one they now consider their enemies.

Before we move forward, lets read Matthew 5:43-48 together:

43 “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ 44 But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, 45 so 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. 46 For if you love those who love you, what reward do you have? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? 47 And if you greet only your brothers,[a] what more are you doing than others? Do not even the Gentiles do the same? 48 You therefore must be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect

In context, Jesus in Matthew 5 was correcting the false teachings of the religious leaders. Those who were listening to Jesus teaching had been taught to love those who loved them and to hate their enemies. Wow, this teaching would be embraced by anyone who had revenge and hate in their heart. But this is not what God said.

Jesus taught just the opposite. In His teaching Jesus pointed the people to understand the mindset of God the Father. God the Father offered mercy to the good and evil. He provided for the needs of both the good and evil. The true Christ-follower will love all people, even his or her enemies.

Now this does not mean that one approves of their deeds. It means that one keeps themselves pure in heart as Kingdom citizens when he or she loves as God loves. Yes, this means even ones enemies.

Brothers and sisters, this was David’s heart in II Samuel 1-4. He loved Saul and wept for him when he died. He loved Abner and wept for him when he died. He loved Saul’s son and wept for him when he died. The Bible said, “He won the hearts of all Israel.”

Brothers and sisters, do you love the way David did? Do you love the way Jesus taught in Matthew 5? I think that most of us would say, this is what I want to do. But to do it is a great mystery.

Brothers and sisters, this call of God is not so hard if you are willing to live a transformed life! When Christ saved you, you were called to surrender everything to Him including your mind and heart. When this happens, Romans 12:1-2, your heart will be filled with love for all people.

Take time today and consider how you can lean into a transformed life. Check out Romans 12:1-2:

 I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship.Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.

  1. What is God saying to you personally out of todays readings?
  2. What happens when we refuse to love our enemies?

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