This post is Day 21 in a series of studies about “A Living Sacrifice”. I strongly suggest you begin with the introduction to this study, please click here to read it.
Feel free to comment below with your own thoughts about each verse and how you will be acting on each thought. Also, if you haven’t yet signed up to receive the notifications of new studies, you can do that today (the form is at the bottom of the page).
A Living Sacrifice – Day 21
Paul was speaking from personal experience as one who had persecuted others and had also been persecuted. He knew both sides of that fence, and had eventually recognised that the only thing to do in the end is do what Jesus said, recorded for us in two of the gospels.
Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse.
Paul was speaking from personal experience as one who had persecuted others and had also been persecuted. He knew both sides of that fence. He had eventually recognised that the only thing to do in the end is do what Jesus said, recorded for us in two of the gospels.
Matthew 5:44 But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you.
Luke 6:27 To you who are listening I say: Love your enemies and do good to those who hate you.
This is a really important lesson to learn in our efforts to become “Living Sacrifices”.
It is never easy to be criticised, and most of us need to discipline ourselves to not fight back. But loving those who criticise is another whole aspect of that situation.
What does it mean to love our enemies? Do we even realise that we have enemies?
In this time of covid, vaccines and masks, many of us are tempted to think that the governments of the world are the enemy. Much nearer to home it can be a person we just don’t get along with, or a competitor in our field of work or education.
In the past, I have recognised enemies in my life and have managed to do as Matthew says and pray for them. But doing what Luke suggests and doing good to them is a very different challenge!
Any battle of this sort begins with the last part of the verse above. We must avoid cursing anyone who doesn’t think the same way we do.
Ask yourself today who your enemy really is. Pray that God will help you deal with that person. Remember God’s instruction to “resist the devil and He will flee”.