RBT: Joel 1-3

Memory Verse: “But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be children of your Father in heaven…” Matthew 5:44,45a NIV

Bible Text: Matthew 5:43-48

5:43 “You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ 

5:44 But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, 

5:45 that you may be children of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. 

5:46 If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that? 

5:47 And if you greet only your own 

people, what are you doing more than others? Do not even pagans do that? 

5:48 Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.

A girl struggled and survived through thick and thin, after armed robbers entered their house, killed her parents and carted away their properties. One day, she went for a crusade and gave her life to Christ. She got married and later discovered that her sick father-in-law who they had been praying for was the armed robber who killed her father. She did not revenge, but continued to pray for the man's salvation. The man eventually recovered and she accommodated him. 

In continuation of the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus referred to Leviticus 19:18 where the Israelites were asked to love their neighbours and hate their enemies. However, He asked them to love their enemies and pray for those who persecute them. This would make them different from unbelievers. Additionally, their lives would be transformed and they would be acknowledged as the children of God.

Beloved, if the natural man or self is not yet crucified, this maybe difficult, but with the grace of God, all will be done perfectly. 

Have you been praying negatively against anyone? Kindly retrace your step.

Insight: An enemy today, can be a dear friend tomorrow.

Prayer: Help me, LORD, to be like Jesus even when I am hurt.

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