Saturday, December 06, 2008

What Does it Mean to Love My Enemy?

I have not been privy to the TV talking heads in the last couple weeks, or even those on the radio that I used to enjoy listening to, but have gotten away from in recent years.  So I don't have any first hand exposure to what has been said regarding the recent terrorist attacks in India...

However, apparently there is still a lot of talking going on regardless of whether or not I am listening, which is why I am grateful to those who are listening and writing about it... which brings me to the content of this post.

Go and Read this post by Greg Gilbert on the 9Marks blog.

It is reacting to some of the response on TV and radio by a prominent Orthodox Jewish Rabbi, and how some Christian's have taken it up and embraced it.  It's good stuff, and I think extremely important to think over and reflect on in our current global-political atmosphere, and particularly in light of how terrorism has become a main stream part of our everyday lives.

Here are the concluding thoughts if that trigger finger ain't so itchy:

Not many of us will ever have the opportunity to sit face to face with a terrorist and have to decide what loving that person might look like. But we do have to decide whether we’ll take pleasure in the thought of that person being in hell—or whether we’ll pray and genuinely hope for that person’s salvation and forgiveness. Putting it all together, I think the best and most Christian response is probably this: to be glad when a terrorist is brought to justice and punished, even executed, by the state, but at the same time to pray that someone, somehow, in those final moments is telling him the Gospel of Jesus, and to hope that one day you’ll stand next to him praising Christ as two forgiven sinners who, if it weren’t for him, would both be in hell.

What you simply can’t do, though, is decide that you’re worthy of God’s grace but that other guy is not.

Even if you don't read the whole thing - take that last line to the bank... all day long.

1 comment:

Aron said...

Have you ever read Richard Wurmbrand's Tortured for Christ? It's very short, and a very good read. In light of this post, I'm certain you would enjoy it. I've often thought whether I could love someone who was in the middle of persecuting me-verbally or physically. Our perspective on grace--as you've so thankfully brought to my mind again in this post--must be so over-ruling and all-encompassing that we can, aided by grace, love even those who are torturing us. Yet, most (many? some?) of us can barely keep from swearing out loud when we stub our toe or are slighted by our spouses...Father, help us. Make us more like Jesus.

Thanks for this. Good stuff.