Love Your Enemies
My name is Kristen and I’m a student on the Bible Core Course, here in San Pedro Belize. As a class we are starting off our 9th week of classes and it’s funny because we are just now studying Genesis. Something we do in this course is read the Bible cover to cover and as we do so we are looking for a timeless truth about God, or in other words something that was true when the Bible was written that is also true for us today.
In my study so far, I have found countless truths about God, humanity, and our relationship with each other. I wish I could list all of them here for you but I think God would want to personally show you the truths Himself. But the one that I just can’t get away from and one that I think all people struggle to believe is that God loves everyone, even those considered to be the enemy… Of all the things I came here to learn about, I didn’t expect it to be the elementary idea that “Jesus loves.”
I desperately wanted to understand the controversial and complicated parts of the Scriptures, and while I am learning some of those things too, mostly I’m learning that the inhabitants of this world are deeply and incredibly understood and loved by God. And not just in Psalms 139 but in Romans, Philemon, and yes even Revelation. Every bit of it is either a story or a reminder of the mercy God has on us doubtful and fickle bunch. The whole idea of having mercy or love for everyone feels like a big pill to swallow. And while I look at the harm that we cause each other…I see it’s also difficult for the rest of us. Maybe this elementary idea requires a lot more than what we all thought.
Whether it’s nation against nation or brother against brother, Jesus just isn’t like us in the sense that He would rather die than harm His enemies. Jesus just won’t be enticed to anything other than to love, which in His case ended in death on a cross for all. As much as I have tried to move past such a simple idea of love, I just haven’t been able to move fast enough. God is love. God is love to those some consider enemies just as much as God is love to me. If God took me over halfway cross the world just so that I would understand this timeless truth, than it must be important for my daily life. This has changed for me the way I see the rest of the world. The way I see other countries, other religions, old friends, and even at times my own brother. So I guess the elementary idea that “Jesus loves” turns out to be one that we are not to live without, justify because “it’s too hard”, or ignore.
Can you imagine what would happen if you decided to love your enemy or brother again? If this is really what Jesus did, than it would probably change everything. And how good would that change be for our world?