Love Those Who Persecute You

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Daily God Walk for Thursday, January 24, 2013

Love Those Who Persecute You
I tell you: Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be sons of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? – Matthew 5:44

An order like this cannot be taken seriously if the one who gave it didn’t apply it to his own life. Luke 23:33-35 records, “When they came to the place called the Skull, there they crucified him… Jesus said, ‘Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.’ And they divided up his clothes by casting lots.”
Jesus loved when loving didn’t make sense. He forgave when justice would demand retaliation and revenge. How could he? He could because he was the very embodiment of God. The God who inhabits heaven is the God who was in Christ.
The only way we can truly love those who persecute us and who hurl unmerited insults at us is to be immersed the love of God. It is the God in us who loves those who are not lovely toward us.
Jesus could endure suffering at the hands of his tormentors because he saw beyond himself and saw the kingdom of God.
We must have the same kingdom perspective. When persecuted we must have a kingdom perspective in our response.

Prayer: Lord, help me to have a kingdom perspective and not to respond according to my need but according to the needs of others and according to the effect in the kingdom. Amen.

Do you find it hard to love those who persecute you?It is hard for most of us. Let us know how you handle this command to love those who persecute you. Do you have an interesting story – tell us about it in the comments section.

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Paul ”Hope Preacher” Smith

Messages of inspiration for the journey of faith

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