Jesus defined the word “enemy” as “anyone who is not for us.” In light of that definition, we all have folks we work and cross paths with, and sometimes even live with, who are not for us. They can make life miserable, yet incredibly, Jesus Christ said, “You have heard it said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy. But I say to you, Love your enemies.’” To love our friends is easy, but to love our enemies is unique.
At the end of the Civil War, many Northerners were demanding that the South be punished for the devastation the war had caused the United States. In the midst of this issue, a group visited President Lincoln in the White House, feeling he was being too soft on the South. One man became so incensed that he pounded on Mr. Lincoln’s desk and he said, “Mr. President, I believe in destroying my enemies!”
President Lincoln sat and reflected a moment, and then he slowly stood and this, “Do we not destroy our enemies when we make them our friends?” This is what Jesus meant, and that type of love can literally change the world.
Can you? Will you? If you will, then through Jesus, you can!