And walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us and given Himself for us…, (Eph 5:2, New King James Version). Love covers a multitude of sins, (Prov.10:12). The Lord said “Behold, I send you out as sheep in the midst of wolves; Therefore be wise as serpents and harmless as doves.” (Matt. 10:16).
Could these wolves represent people we refer to as our enemies? Definitely! Wolves are devouring animals that don’t show mercy on their prey while humans are known to retaliate and kill in a similar manner. Imagine a farmer with a sheep-shearing business plagued with wolves devouring his stock. What does he do? He would shoot and kill them all for affecting his business. But this is not the case in the kingdom of heaven; our Father’s business is the redemption of souls as He commanded us in His great commission. My admonition is not to shoot your enemy for harming you, but to choose a wiser course of action.
Definition according to Webster: “Enemy is a person who feels hatred for, fosters harmful designs against, or engages in antagonistic activities against another; an adversary or opponent.” My own definition as I see it in the light of the scriptures is a person (flesh and blood) having been possessed by the demonic influence of our main enemy, the devil. The Bible says in Ephesians 6:12, For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of darkness of this age, against spiritual host of wickedness in heavenly places. We can all relate to unpleasant experiences and heartbreaking relationships with people such as family members, friends, coworkers and neighbors because of an issue or due to an issue they become our enemy. How should we deal with these enemies?
Let us learn from the Master Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior. In Psalm 119:97-100, terms such as commandments, precepts, statutes, and laws refer to the WORD of God written to be carefully studied, meditated, and acted on by us with the help of His Spirit.
Verse 98 - Thou, through your commandments, make me wiser than my enemies. How?
Regarding Matthew 5:43-45, my focus is on v.44: “But I say unto 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.”
Food for thought: could the Lord be using these enemies to try or test you in order to see what kind of heart you have for those still in sin? It all comes down to the great commandment on LOVE…God is LOVE. Don’t be hasty or angry in your words towards such people and don’t be influenced by unrighteous action. Remember: the arm of flesh will fail, but the power of love through the Holy Spirit conquers. Let’s look at Jesus Christ, our perfect example, who endured accusations, painful scourging, humiliation, name-calling, false witness, mockery, and crucifixion. Despite such treatment, He said “Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do” (Luke 23:34); Who, when he was reviled, reviled not again; when he suffered, he threatened not; but committed himself to him that judgeth righteously (1 Peter 2:23).
Therefore, commit yourself to God who is able to deliver you from such demonic influence in others.
Verse 99 - I have more understanding than all my teachers; for Your testimonies are my meditations. Some of us have been wrongly taught by men who claimed to be so-called 'teachers' or we have been our own teachers operating under the wrong perception. Personally, I have gone through such a time until the Lord in His infinite mercy had to re-teach and reveal His word afresh daily in me. Let us be taught again by the Lord because it is only through Him that God speaks in these last days. As stated in Hebrews 1:2, Jesus has given us access to the Father so we can hear from heaven ourselves. Go back and learn what Jesus taught in the Gospels, learn His way of doing things. He would help you by His Spirit; just take heed to His word and be a doer.
Verse 100 - I understand more than the ancients, because I keep thy precepts (WORD). Some of us love quoting David in the Psalms railing curses on our enemies as in Psalm 59, consume them in wrath, consume them that they may not be; Psalm 70:2, let them be ashamed and confounded…; Psalm 6:10, Let all my enemies be ashamed and greatly troubled; Psalm 63:9-10, But those who seek my life to destroy it, shall go into the lower parts of the earth. They shall fall by the sword and be a portion for jackals; Psalm 82:17, Let them be confounded and dismayed forever; yes let them be put to shame and perish.
What if they don’t perish or become a portion for the sword or jackals but are like the thief on the cross who, at his last breath, gave his life to Jesus and was received into paradise?
Elijah called down fire from heaven on the false prophets and even slaughtered them because of his zeal for the Lord. Some of us still pray calling fire down on our enemies; call fire down on the forces of darkness behind the enemy’s actions rather than the enemy themselves. Elijah’s style wouldn’t work for our modern days, only Jesus’ style works! In Luke 9:54-56, we see that the Samaritans did not receive Jesus; He and the disciples were not welcomed in their village and the immediate response of the three closest disciples was to command fire from Heaven and consume them as Elijah did (don’t be like the ancients).
Jesus the all-wise God turned, rebuked them and said, “You do not know what manner of spirit you are of.” Vengeance belongs to God not us. In any situation, do not just focus on the individual’s actions but also on the spirit behind their actions for they are controlled and in bondage. It is these demonic spirits that we cast out or contend with in the powerful name of Jesus Christ and by His blood. We ought to know what spirit we are made of, (Isaiah 61:1; Luke 4:17-19). We must have the Spirit of Christ; the spirit of love, kindness, compassion, forgiveness, long-suffering, meekness, mercy, intercession, humility and delivering your enemies by proclaiming liberty to the captives and freedom to those who are bound.
Just like the people of Nineveh, they don’t know better; not knowing their right hand from the left. We were created unto good works from the foundation of the world so let us do those good works that Jesus said in Luke 6:35-36, “But love your enemies, do good, and lend, hoping for nothing in return; and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High. For He is kind to the unthankful and evil. Therefore be merciful, just as your Father also is merciful.” With these precepts you cannot fail and you’ll enter into the rest of the Lord. Amen.
Finally, Ephesians 5:15, See then that you walk circumspectly, not as fools but as wise, redeeming the time, because the days are evil. Therefore do not be unwise, but understand what the will of the Lord is. What is the will of the Lord? 2 Peter 3:9b says, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.
So, be wise; instead of railing curses on people in order to get even, just show them mercy like Jesus and walk in wisdom. Therefore be imitators of God as dear children. This means to be Christ-like, for you too are a son of God. Praise Jesus Christ the Author and Finisher of our faith.