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Loving Your Enemy

Our Daily Bread Ministries / Various Hosts
The Truth Network Radio
August 22, 2021 8:00 pm

Loving Your Enemy

Our Daily Bread Ministries / Various Hosts

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August 22, 2021 8:00 pm

I ducked into a room before she saw me. I was ashamed of hiding, but I didn’t want to deal with her right then—or ever. I longed to tell her off, to put her in her place. Though I was annoyed by her behavior, it’s likely I had irritated her even more!

The Jews and Samaritans also shared a mutually irritating relationship.  Being a people of mixed origin and worshiping their own gods, the Samaritans—in the eyes of the Jews—had spoiled the Jewish bloodline and faith, erecting a rival religion on Mount Gerazim (John 4:20). In fact, the Jews so despised Samaritans they walked the long way around rather than take the direct route through their country.

Jesus revealed a better way. He brought salvation for all people, including Samaritans. So He ventured into the heart of Samaria to bring living water to a sinful woman and her town (John 4:4-42). His last words to His disciples were to follow His example. They must share His good news with everyone, beginning in Jerusalem and dispersing through Samaria until they reached “the ends of the earth” (Acts 1:8). Samaria was more than the next geographical sequence. It was the most painful part of the mission. The disciples must overcome lifetimes of prejudice to love people they didn’t like.

Does Jesus matter more than our grievances? There’s only one way to be sure. Love your “Samaritan.”

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Hi, and welcome to today's encouragement from the Our Daily Bread devotional.

My name is Mike Whitmer, and I wrote today's reading, Loving Your Enemy. I ducked into her room before she saw me. I was ashamed of hiding, but I didn't want to deal with her right then, or ever.

I longed to tell her off, to put her in her place, though I'd been annoyed by her past behavior, it's likely I had irritated her even more. The Jews and Samaritans also shared a mutually irritating relationship. Being a people of mixed origin and worshipping their own gods, the Samaritans, in the eyes of the Jews, had spoiled the Jewish bloodline and faith, erecting a rival religion on Mount Gerizim.

In fact, the Jews so despised Samaritans, they would walk the long way around, rather than take the direct route through their country. Jesus revealed a better way. He brought salvation for all people, including Samaritans, so he ventured into the heart of Samaria, to bring living water to a sinful woman and her town. His last words to his disciples were to follow his example. They must share his good news with everyone, beginning in Jerusalem and dispersing through Samaria until they reach the ends of the earth. Samaria was more than the next geographical sequence.

It was the most painful part of the mission. The disciples had to overcome lifetimes of prejudice to love people they didn't like. Does Jesus matter more to us than our grievances?

There's only one way to be sure. Love your Samaritan. Today's Our Daily Bread devotional scripture reading is from Acts chapter 1 verses 1-8. In my former book Theophilus, I wrote about all that Jesus began to do and to teach until the day he was taken up to heaven, after giving instructions through the Holy Spirit to the apostles he had chosen. After his suffering, he presented himself to them and gave many convincing proofs that he was alive. He appeared to them over a period of forty days and spoke about the kingdom of God. On one occasion, while he was eating with them, he gave them this command, Do not leave Jerusalem, but wait for the gift my Father promised, which you have heard me speak about. For John baptized with water, but in a few days you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit. Then they gathered around him and asked him, Lord, are you at this time going to restore the kingdom to Israel?

He said to them, It is not for you to know the times or dates the Father has set by his own authority. But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria and to the ends of the earth. Let us pray. Father, may the waves of your love crash over us, producing a torrent that streams to others through us. In Jesus' name we pray, amen.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-09-14 01:12:31 / 2023-09-14 01:14:11 / 2

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