Matthew 5:43-45 “You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor and hate your enemy. But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you
When Jesus gave this commandment did you ever wonder to ask yourself how we are to pray for our enemies? We know all to well the first part of this when it says, “love your neighbor and hate your enemy.”
We have that down to a science. Before we became a follower of Christ everyone of us hated someone. As Christians we still struggle with hate. Therefore, Jesus gave the commandment for us to love our enemies and pray for those who persecute you.
Our intellect speaks to us so loudly that we can’t wrap our minds around loving someone who is an enemy to us. Let alone to pray for them. I am sure the disciple’s eyebrows rise just as ours do to this day. Jesus knew what hate does to a person therefore He tells us to pray for them. It’s kind of hard to hate a person when you are praying for them. So, how does one pray for those who do them harm? There are moments when I find it difficult to pray for those who do me unjustly. But I know I have to.
When we pray for those who persecute us, we are literally asking the Lord to get a hold of their heart. When we pray for people, we don’t allow our hearts to be filled with revenge. We recognize the true enemy is Satan, not flesh and blood. Praying relinquish our rights to hold another person responsible for the wrong they have caused us. While at the same time it allows us to forgive and have the character of Jesus. I don’t have no formula on what words you are to say when you pray for your enemies. But what I can do is tell you about an experience I had.
Anytime I come face-to-face with any challenge I always tell the Lord how difficult it is for me. I tell Him that it hurts and bothers me to pray for that person who has caused me so much pain. I then tell the Lord that I am going to need Him to help me, because I don’t have it in me now to do this. And as I begin to pray for my enemies, I always tell the Lord to forgive me for how my thoughts raced concerning them.
My prayer starts out with maybe a minute praying for my enemies. But by the end of the week I noticed that it had totally changed. I saw myself praying that God would bless them and their families. That their hearts would be open to receive Christ. I also noticed that I enjoyed praying for them. Little did I know that the Lord was changing my heart towards my enemies. They were no longer my enemies. I had now seen them through the eyes that Christ sees them, with love.
Flesh and blood is never the enemy. Satan gives us an illusion like our enemies are flesh and blood.