November 2016 2

MATTHEW 5:43-45

Jesus said, “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’  “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,  that you may be sons of your Father in heaven….”

I want to focus on “that you may be sons of your Father in heaven”.  Children typically mimic their parents.  They say we learn what we live.  Parents who curse and use bad language shouldn’t be surprised when their child repeats the same words in the grocery store to a stranger.  We, children of God, have a glorious, loving, and holy Father.  There is an expectation as well as a responsibility for us as sons and daughters to mimic our Father.  Do as He does.  Speak as He speaks.  Jesus certainly followed this example.

Recognize the significance of Jesus’ words here.  When you love your enemies, when you blessthose who curse you, when you do good to those who hate you and WHEN you pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you, you are considered a son/daughter of your Father in heaven.   Behavior contrary to Jesus’ words warrants you as illegitimate.  Jesus is preparing His bride to be without spot and wrinkle.  It’s time we give up our carnal ways.  Romans says that a carnal mind is hostile to God.  Ask the Lord to fill you to overflow with His love and His heart.  You see Jesus goes on to say in verse 45, “for He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust.”  He is merciful even to the person who walks in injustice, who is not saved, and who performs evil acts.

How much more so should we love, bless, do good, and pray for those who hate us, treat us with great disdain, and talk about us with unkind and angry words.  I want to be a son/daughter of my Father in heaven.  How about you?

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