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Listening

“But to you who are listening I say: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you." Luke 6:27‭-‬28 NIV


For the last few Sundays, we talked about the parables of Jesus in Matthew 13. Though he spoke the same message to everyone gathered, only those with ears to hear–those earnestly seeking the kin-dom–understood the message. We hear a similar invitation to listen in today's verse.


The invitation makes no sense to those who don't understand the meaning, those without ears to listen and hearts to obey. To love, do good, and bless and pray for our enemies, is counterintuitive. "Really God, you can't seriously mean it! What about my feelings?"


But for those who have accepted Christ, we understand that is precisely what God desires. In taking the name of Christians, we seek to live like Jesus. Like him, we counter with compassion, forgiveness, and love when faced with opposition, oppression, and persecution.


Our response doesn't mean we endorse their bad behavior. And we don't need to like it. It is sinful, and we should hate evil. But if we respond in any way other than love, that, too, is a sin.


Father, thank you for your sinless Son, Jesus, our Lord and example. We confess we find loving our enemies challenging. Our human tendency is to respond to evil with evil. Forgive us for those times we have sinned. Help us become more like Jesus, meeting evil with love. May others witness this difference so we may serve as a witness to your glory. Amen.


Blessings,

Pastor Tim



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