Eating With Enemies
Alex Enabnit – Research Editor
This weekend we continued our series on peace by talking about our neighbors and our enemies.
In the sermon, Jeremy read the well-known parable of the Good Samaritan. This is a story that is so familiar, some of the details have lost their original impact. For instance, the priest and the Levite, both pillars of the community and unanimously thought of as “good guys,” were made into the bad guys! Even more scandalous, the Samaritan, a person of a hated race that the Jews avoided at all costs, was made into the hero. The Samaritan saved the Jew who had been left for dead, despite the generations of animosity that existed between the two. Jesus not only gave us an example of what being neighborly truly looks like, but also that our neighbors also include people that we don’t necessarily like.
Following this, we looked at Matthew 5:43-45, a section from Jesus’ famous sermon on the mount, where Jesus said, “…love your enemies, and pray for those who persecute you…” (v.44). I don’t know about you, but this isn’t easy. In fact, it’s downright hard! But it’s a statement that we cannot disregard. This is not something that Jesus said metaphorically, as he both loved his enemies and prayed for them, even as they were nailing him to the cross.
So… Now what? If we’re sincerely trying to follow Jesus, what do with what He taught? Jeremy gave us three applications out of the message:
- We don’t get to hate our enemies.
- We don’t even get to have people as enemies.
- We have to learn to live with others in a creative way.
Verses and quotes from the sermon:
Psalm 23; Luke 10:25-37; Matthew 5:43-45; Luke 9:51-56; Ephesians 6:12; 1 Peter 5:8
“It is our responsibility to wrestle with the verses that trouble us as much as we preach the verses that inspire us.” Shane Claiborne
“The gospel ought not to be treated as we would a new brand of toothpaste that must conform to our tastes before we accept it. We are called, rather, to conform our lives to the gospel.” Robert Brimlow
“We don’t have to change the world. We just have to be the part of the world that has already been changed.” Brian Zahnd
If we won’t trust Jesus as a practical teacher, we can’t trust Him as a spiritual savior.Click to tweet
This is Living – Hillsong Music
Great I Am – Jared Anderson
This I Believe (The Creed) – Hillsong Music
I Surrender All – J.W. Van DeVenter