“You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ but I say to you, “Love your enemies and pray for those that persecute you, so that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven, for He makes his sun to rise on the evil and the good and sends his rain on the just and the unjust. For if you love those who love you, what reward have you? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? And if you salute only your brother, what more are you doing than others? Do not even the Gentiles do the same? You, therefore, must be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect.” —Matthew 5:43-48
In today’s teaching, Marc introduces us to the most radical statement that Jesus ever made. When Jesus quoted Leviticus 19:18, “Love your neighbor as yourself,” in the context of the day it was understood as, “Love your neighbor who is like yourself.”
You see, you and I are more alike than either of us is like God! And in the way that I treat you, God will treat me.
Jesus's most radical call is a command to love those who hate us. If we who are followers of Jesus would simply live this out, we would solve the issues that tear apart our world today.
Question: Think for a moment about a person in your life who you have a really hard time with, maybe even they hate you! Can you pray for them right now?
Family Chat: What does it look like when kids hate you at school? What would it look like to love them even though they do that?
Take Action: What do you need to do today to be obedient to the words of Jesus and love those who hate you?