Loving Your Enemies – Matthew 5:43-48

Today is Saturday, June 6, 2020, and I am Pastor Kim Alexander and you are listening to COVID-19 Connection Series # 64

Welcome and so glad that you have joined me.

How are you today?

Announcements:

Birthday: My Grandson Derrek turned 8-years-old yesterday, June 5th.

Church this week – June 7th – 8:30; and 11:00 A.M. Sunday school at 9:45 A.M. No Children’s Church until July – We need volunteers.

VBS in June – We need your help. Please contact Annette Ward

AWANA in September needs volunteers

H.E.L.P Ministries – school work/teachers salaries – $ 2,000 month

Mission Compound – $ 20,000 by the end of May

Today in the News: No News is Good News

Bible Quiz Time:

 

Q: How many sling-throws did it take David to hit Goliath?
A: One

Q: Who was Saul’s son that David befriended?
A: Jonathan

Q: What did Saul throw to try to kill David?
A: A javelin/spear

Q: What did Jonathan do to save David’s life from Saul?
A: Warned him that Saul would try to kill him

Q: What foreign country did David run away to?
A: Land of the Philistines/Philistia

Q: Did Saul give up on chasing David when David went into the wilderness?
A: No

Pause for Prayer:

  • Riots and Protests throughout the U.S.
  • Bob Ahsmuhs – Cancer
  • Tom Spann – Cancer
  • Terry Robinson
  • New COVID-19 case at KH in Coeur d’ Alene
  • Lowana LaBolle
  • Men’s Bible Study – Friday nights
  • Cup of Grace Ministry
  • E.L.P Ministries
  • Heal our nation/guide our president

Today our WORD from the Lord comes from Matthew 5:43-48,

 43 “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ 44 But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you, 45 that you may be sons of your Father in heaven; for He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust. 46 For if you love those who love you, what reward have you? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? 47 And if you greet your brethren only, what do you do more than others? Do not even the tax collectors do so? 48 Therefore you shall be perfect, just as your Father in heaven is perfect.

   I want to have a Word with you about Loving Your Enemies

   Wow! All of this teaching from Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount is so relevant for where we find ourselves in these past few weeks.

   This idea of loving our neighbor is taken from Leviticus 19:18,

   18 You shall not take vengeance, nor bear any grudge against the children of your people, but you shall love your neighbor as yourself: I am the Lord.

   Can you tell who spoke those words? The LORD was speaking to Moses.

 

    I. Love your neighbors and hate your enemies – 5:43

43 “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’

   Most people think it alright to hate those who are your enemies. I had a neighbor once who told me in no uncertain terms that he hated the Japanese for what they did at Peral Harbor. When he spoke to me, he called them “Japs”. He told me that he would never ever like the dirty “Japs”.

   The Jews believed that they didn’t have to love their enemies either. Well, as we come to this section of His sermon, He turns this thinking on its head. Take a look with me at what Jesus taught.

   II. Love your enemies – 5:44

44 But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you,

How can we, or are we to love our enemies? Three practical steps:
  1. Bless those who curse you
  2. Do good to those who hate you
  3. Pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you

   Which of these things have you put into practice with someone you found hard to love?

   Someone in the church recently shared with me about a neighbor that threatened to kill her son if he stepped foot on her property. How do you love someone who says something like that to you?

  • You are the sons of your Father – 5:45

45 that you may be sons of your Father in heaven; for He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust.

   Your behavior when it comes to loving your enemies shows that you actually belong to God, your Father in heaven.

  • Sun rise – on the evil and the good
  • Rain – on the just and the unjust

   Tony Evans writes, “It’s a reminder that God doesn’t show kindness only to believers. He extends common grace to all, meaning that there are certain blessings that he gives to all people.”

   III. Take love to another level – 5:46-47

46 For if you love those who love you, what reward have you? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? 47 And if you greet your brethren only, what do you do more than others? Do not even the tax collectors do so?

   It’s easy to love those who love you back. There is no reward for loving those who love you. However, it is a different story when it comes to those who are your enemy and you seek to love them.

  • Tax collectors love tax collectors
  • Sinner love other sinners
  • Rioters love other rioters

  And what about greeting your brethren only – you know, the people that you know and love. Other people do that. Drug dealers and prostitutes greet each other. Do we do anything more than what others do? Are we different as kingdom citizens? Isn’t that the behavior of tax collectors? Sure it is.

   Christian people must stand out from the rest of the crowd.

   IV. Be more mature – 5:48

   48 Therefore you shall be perfect, just as your Father in heaven is perfect.

   What is your idea of the word “perfect” as it is being used here? Are you as perfect as God? Am I? No – just ask my wife!

   The Greek word here carries the idea of mental and moral completeness, full of age, “be a” man. The idea is that we must do what God would do when it comes to enemies. What did Jesus do? He actually asked His Father to forgive those who crucified Him. That’s love for one’s enemies. 

Lessons for Learners:

  1. We are to love our neighbors.
  2. We are to love our enemies. Can you think of any enemies you might have that you need to love?
  3. We are to bless, do good, and pray for our enemies.
  4. We love because He first loved us – it shows our true faith in Christ.
  5. We are to take love to the next level – our love is to be different than what we see in the world.
  6. We are to present a mature (perfect) love – a mature grown up love.

Remember, I’m in touch so you be in touch.

And as Dr. Robert Cook from the King’s College used to say, “Walk with the King today and be a blessing.