To Love An Enemy


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Love Your Enemy

The Work Of The People - Love Your Enemy - The Work Of The People

But it is a commandment to love innocent neighbors, not unrepentant enemies. To this day, love your enemies is a teaching that is outside my heart.


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It is easy, they say, to love those who love you, but how can one love those who openly and insidiously seek to defeat you? Others, like the philosopher Nietzsche, contend that Jesus' exhortation to love one's enemies is testimony to the fact that the Christian ethic is designed for the weak and cowardly, and not for the strong and courageous. Jesus, they say, was an impractical idealist. In spite of these insistent questions and persistent objections, this command of Jesus challenges us with new urgency. Upheaval after upheaval has reminded us that modern man is traveling along a road called hate, in a journey that will bring us to destruction and damnation.

Far from being the pious injunction of a Utopian dreamer, the command to love one's enemy is an absolute necessity for our survival. Love even for enemies is the key to the solution of the problems of our world. Jesus is not an impractical idealist: he is the practical realist. I am deeply moved but still deeply unconvinced by either Jesus or King. Love is affirmation and acceptance, and the hostile acts of an enemy defy both. To be commanded to love what cannot be loved just cheapens love and deprives us of the right to be outraged at an immoral and unjust assault on our life and freedom.

I do agree that hate is a spiritually corrosive emotion. Hate, it has been said, is like drinking poison and expecting someone else to die. I get that but I cannot make the leap into loving my attacker. Perhaps I can diminish my hate by pursuing just punishment for my enemy, but love is a bridge too far.

Jesus and King preached unconditional love and, from afar, I admire both the purity and the human impossibility of their remote human teaching. Tom Hartman. Acts Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.

It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails. Doug Britton, Bible-based Marriage and Family Therapist, has helped hundreds of thousands of people as a therapist, clinical director of a treatment center, seminar speaker, radio cohost, and author of over twenty books that show how to apply God's truths in your daily life. Visit www. Permission granted to print for personal use.

See reprint policy. First Name. Last Name. Sign Up. Grow in love and patience Read More. Escape hurt feelings Read More.

God Says to Love Your Enemies

Learning how to trust God Read More. See yourself as God sees you Read More. Sign up to get newsletters a month announcing new online Bible studies and more. Your confidentiality is assured. We will never sell or share your name or email address. Don't miss out on new Bible studies! Sign up for Doug Britton's newsletter today. Summary: Bible study and self-test — How to love your enemy and pray for those who mistreat you.

Introduction to loving your enemies This Bible study on loving your enemies and self-test is part of a series of free online studies on anger. God commands us to love everyone—including our enemies. Here are some key Scriptures Bible verses on loving your enemies: A new command I give you: Love one another. John But I tell you who hear me: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you.

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Luke Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. Romans We work hard with our own hands. Romans Do not repay evil with evil or insult with insult, but with blessing, because to this you were called so that you may inherit a blessing. John But what does it matter? Philippians Jesus loved his enemies.

Make him your example. He or she may be distracted. He or she may be busy. He or she may be going through a personal crisis.


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  7. He or she may be sick or exhausted. Realize that you may be right: The other person may be your enemy. Determine what part you played in the problem.

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    Matthew See problems as opportunities to grow in Christ. Romans Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds. Acts Love and pray for your enemies. Pray that God will help you forgive. Pray that God will help you love your enemy. Evaluate your love for your enemies How well do you practice the following verses? Doug Britton, MFT Doug Britton, Bible-based Marriage and Family Therapist, has helped hundreds of thousands of people as a therapist, clinical director of a treatment center, seminar speaker, radio cohost, and author of over twenty books that show how to apply God's truths in your daily life.

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