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Worship Series - "Conflict"
Today: March 9 – Love Your Enemies
Order of Worship
Pre Service Music
Welcome, Singing & Prayer
Announcements & Offering
Message: “Love Your Enemies”
… Jamie Holtom
Scripture: Matthew 5:38-48
Special Song: “Worth It”
Prayer of Commitment
Closing Song & God Blesses Us
Scripture: Matthew 5:38-48 NIV
38 “You have heard that it was said, ‘Eye for eye, and tooth for tooth 39 But I tell you, do not resist an evil person. If anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to them the other cheek also. 40 And if anyone wants to sue you and take your shirt, hand over your coat as well. 41 If anyone forces you to go one mile, go with them two miles. 42 Give to the one who asks you, and do not turn away from the one who wants to borrow from you.
43 “You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ 44 But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, 45 that you may be children of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. 46 If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that? 47 And if you greet only your own people, what are you doing more than others? Do not even pagans do that? 48 Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.
GOING DEEPER WITH CONFLICT
“Love Your Enemies”
March 9, 2014
When you think about the idea of “enemies” what comes to mind? Who in your own life comes to mind? Do you have enemies? Who do you think Jesus might have been referring to?
- In what ways would you say “an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth” is an attitude that prevails in our culture as well? How is what Jesus is suggesting here different from that?
- To be “children of your Father” suggests seeing others as human, recognizing God’s love for them too, and being about a common purpose as God’s children. In what ways do these things help us to love our enemies?
- Below are a few quotes from Lewis Smedes. What is your reaction to these ideas?
"When we forgive evil we do not excuse it, we do not tolerate it, we do not smother it. We look the evil full in the face, call it what it is, let its horror shock and stun and enrage us, and only then do we forgive it."
"You will know forgiveness has begun when you recall those who hurt you and feel the power to wish them well."
“It takes one person to forgive, it takes two people to be reunited”.
“To forgive is to set a prisoner free and discover that the prisoner was you”
- Verse 48 says to be perfect as our heavenly Father is perfect. What if Jesus is suggesting that we can forgive and love our enemies through the power of God rather than trying to “be” perfect? How does that impact the reading of this passage and living of this out?
This week pray for someone who you struggle to love...see what God does through this prayer.