Love Your Enemies
Luke 6:27-28 Lexham English Bible
27 “But to you who are listening I say: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, 28 bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you.
Listen in the Greek is akouō and it means to hear, listen, understand, pay attention. Describes the act of hearing or listening to a person with emphasis on the accurate understanding of that which is spoken. Not everyone who heard Jesus was truly listening. There were religious leaders who heard Jesus’ words, but they were not really listening. But those who would listen and pay attention, would gain understanding through the Holy Spirit. For it is Holy Spirit who leads and guides us into all truth to know and understand what the Lord has called us to do.
Here Jesus speaks of loving our enemies. Love in the Greek is agapaō and it means to love. Involves a deep level of affection and intimacy. This is the very love that Jesus displayed on the cross. There isn’t anything Jesus has called us to do that He himself didn’t do first. Everything Jesus did was by the power, might, and leading of the Holy Spirit. This is the only way we can truly love our enemies. This isn’t a love based on feeling or emotions. There are things people have done to wound or offend us that if we based our decision to love only on feelings, we would choose not to love. But the love Jesus speaks of here is the highest form of love. It is a love based on decision and will and is only possible as we abide in Christ each day.
Enemy in the Greek is echthros and it means hostile, enemy. Signifies one who is hostile toward another and thus is an enemy. To our human mind and understanding it would seem contrary to love those who hate us, curse us, or mistreat us. There are terrible things that Christians have suffered throughout the church age at the hand of unbelievers because of their allegiance to Jesus Christ. Those who would be hostile to us because of our faith in Christ are simply blinded by the devil. When we look at the book of Acts, we see that before Saul of Tarsus had his eyes open to who Jesus truly was he was doing everything in his own power to destroy the church. But the moment came when Saul had his eyes open, God used him powerfully to impact the world for God’s kingdom and write a majority of the New Testament.
Those who hate us because of the name of Jesus may stand against us, but they are not the true enemy. The true enemy is the demonic host that keeps them imprisoned through lie and deception. What we ultimately face is a spiritual battle, and we must use the weapons of our warfare to win the battle. We must pray for those who stand against us that their eyes and hearts would be open. The only proper response if we are to manifest the character and nature of Christ is to walk in love regardless of what someone does to me.
Jesus has made it clear we are called to love, do good, bless, and pray for our enemies. In a world that is divided and broken, this is essential at this hour in history. As we continue to move toward the rapture of the church, things on the earth are going to continue to escalate like labor pains. As a woman draws near the moment when she will give birth, the contractions she is experiencing will intensify. These are the times we live in and what the world needs today is simply for the church to be all that God has called her to be. May we always manifest the character and nature of Jesus. May we pray for our enemies and truly exemplify His love.
Father help me to love and pray for my enemies. Father help me to let go of any wounds or offense. Father right now reveal to me if I have any unforgiveness or bitterness in my life toward another. I pray for every person who hates or stands against me because of you and your kingdom. I pray that their hearts, minds, and eyes would be open to the truth. Father remove the veil of the enemy. Help them to see the truth of who you are and how much you love them. In the mighty name of Jesus, Amen!