• Jenna

Love My Enemy

Updated: Mar 31

To the contrary, "if your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink; for by so doing you will heap burning coals on his head.” Romans 12:20


Dear Lord,

I praise You for sending Your Son Jesus to die for sinners like me. You are a God of love, and You loved your enemies so much that You died for me in the single most horrific way mankind has ever known. If You loved Your enemies to that degree, I can’t even imagine the degree to which you love Your children! I am incredibly blessed to be chosen and loved by You, Lord.

The root origin of how to love my enemies is to first experience being loved as an enemy of God Himself; by being saved by grace through faith in Christ. If God forgave me by dying for me while I was still His enemy, how could I not also forgive my enemies? We are never more like God than when we forgive others.

Vengeance is for the Lord


One of the reasons it’s so hard to love our enemies (to show them grace and kindness, pray for them, even bless them), is because it feels like they are getting away with murder at times. And the feeling of injustice can stir up so much anger and outrage in us to the point that it creates such bitterness and resentment. These feelings are things that make it hard for us to be kind to our enemies, to pray for them, or to bless them; things that Satan uses to continue stealing from us. Well, nobody gets away with murder, or for that matter, anything else in this life. Not one single soul escapes unrepentant sin. For the ones who refuse to repent they will inevitably stand before God one day and have to give an account for every evil thought they had, every idle word they said, and every sinful deed they did. And they will be without excuse. It is a terrifying thing to fall into the hands of the living God (Hebrews 10:31). I wouldn't wish even a second of that encounter on my worst enemy.


Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave it to the wrath of God, for it is written, “Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord” (Romans 12:19). Hand over to God the vengeance, and don’t think justice won’t be done. Oh, it will be done. The truth always comes out, and most always, the truth comes out in this life. And if the truth doesn't come out in this life for whatever good reason God has, it most certainly will in the next. Nothing is covered up that will not be revealed, or hidden that will not be known. Therefore whatever you have said in the dark shall be heard in the light, and what you have whispered in private rooms shall be proclaimed on the housetops (Luke 12:2-4). All sins will be punished, either on the cross for those who repent, (and you can’t improve upon that punishment), or in hell for those who don’t repent, (and you can’t improve upon that punishment either). Don’t ever worry that you have to take vengeance into your hands so that justice is done. Leave that for God and for God alone. Rest in Jesus and trust Him.


Love My Enemy


Jesus commands me to love my enemies. Although difficult, I trust the goodness of His commands, and I know He will help me to do so because He has given me His Holy Spirit. “But I say to you who hear, love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who abuse you” (Luke 6:27). Jesus commands me to go the extra mile, turn the other cheek, give to everyone who begs from me, and from the one who takes away my goods, do not demand them back, nor seek revenge. (*This is not meant to be taken as a command to stay in any abusive situation where someone is actively harming you physically. Retreating from violence or avoiding a physical abuser is not being discouraged in this text, at all. If you can take steps to avoid future injury, that is the right and wise thing God wants you to do. God is not commanding you to welcome any kind of abuse).

Display the Surpassing Worth of Christ For My Enemy


What Jesus means is that loving my enemy is to be an illustration to the rest of the world that Jesus is my ultimate satisfaction; my supreme comfort, joy, and peace. See, when I have Jesus, I don’t need to chase after money or material things that He has ordained to be taken from me. Neither do I need to chase after security or seek revenge. I have Jesus. He will supply all that I need on His time. And I am to bring Him glory by displaying the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord to the entire world - through loving my enemies. I am to exalt the glory of Christ to others by demonstrating love to my enemies through my forgiveness, blessings, and prayers over their lives. It’s all about Jesus and pointing others to Him; it’s not about me.

Heap Burning Coals On My Enemy


In Romans, Paul writes, “To the contrary,“if your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink; for by so doing you will heap burning coals on his head.” (Rom 12:20) This means that if I do these loving things for my enemy, I am bringing glory to God; either glory that is very beautiful or very dangerous for my enemy. If my enemy is broken by my lovingkindness to the point of repentance, the coals of my love will prove to be a burning contrition over their own sins. I am demonstrating an act of love that may soften them and ultimately help them come to repentance and be saved. On the contrary, if my enemy doesn’t repent after receiving my lovingkindness, the coals of my love will multiply the heat of their hell where justice will ultimately be served by God Himself. God is going to use me as a vessel for His purposes, whether it’s for His glory towards life or death, heaven or hell.

Pray For My Enemy to See the Light of the Gospel


Lord, help me to love my enemies. Help me to rejoice when people insult me, persecute me, or say all kinds of evil things about me on Your account, for great is my reward in heaven. (Mat 5:11-12). Lord, no matter what anyone has ever said or done to me in this short life, if it is for Your glory, I beg you to have mercy on them. Or, if it is for Your glory, I pray that justice is served. Whether it’s for the glory of Your mercy or for the glory of Your wrath, I pray for Your will to be done. And I know Your will is for people to come to repentance and be saved. I pray that my enemies repent and see the glorious light of the gospel before it’s too late and justice is served for all of eternity. I pray that my enemies come and join me in Your kingdom and become my brothers and sisters in Christ so that we may rejoice together! Lord, please soften their hearts, have mercy on them, call them to repentance, and by Your amazing grace, bless them with the greatest blessing of all – Jesus Christ. That is my prayer for my enemies.

All glory belongs to my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.


In Jesus’ Name I pray amen.


 

If you love those who love you, what benefit is that to you? For even sinners love those who love them. And if you do good to those who do good to you, what benefit is that to you? For even sinners do the same. And if you lend to those from whom you expect to receive, what credit is that to you? Even sinners lend to sinners, to get back the same amount. But love your enemies, and do good, and lend, expecting nothing in return, and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High, for he is kind to the ungrateful and the evil. Be merciful, even as your Father is merciful. Luke 6:32-36


For while we were still weak, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. For one will scarcely die for a righteous person—though perhaps for a good person one would dare even to die—but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us (Romans 5:6-8).