For the next two weeks we’ll explore what I like to think of as “Graduate Level Christianity.” Some of Jesus’s toughest teachings for His disciples were relational commands.
Let’s take a look at these commands one by one, most of them found in Luke 6, starting with verse 27.
Jesus first commanded His disciples tolovetheir enemies. Ouch. It requires little effort to love those who return our love. But if we are to be obedient to Christ, we must also love those who don’t.
How is it humanly possible to love our enemies? Especially when we want to despise them – not love them.
It’s not possible in our own strength. But when a person receives Christ, he also possesses His supernatural strength within, now making it possible to love our own enemies in the same way that Jesus loved His. And us.
Think about this: We were all once enemies of God. We rebelled against Him and His perfect will. Yet while we were still sinners, Christ died for us (Roman 5:8). Jesus didn’t withhold His love while we were entangled in enmity against Him. Instead, He loved us before we ever repented. Before we ever gave Him a first thought. While we were still rebels.
The key to forgiving our enemies is believing that Jesus forgave us when we were His enemy. We deserved eternal separation from Him because of our treachery. Yet He still came to earth to pardon our sins and make us His friend (John 15:14).
What amazing grace!
And if we want to completely and totally exasperate our enemies, let’s do this: Love them. Unconditionally. As Jesus has loved us - once His enemy and now His friend.
Our enemies will never be more confused.
They have no more power over us.