Jesus said to pray for your enemies, so you better start praying for yourself!
When you start talking torture, when you withhold justice, when you withhold food for the hungry, drink to the thirsty, money for the poor, medicine and medical care to the sick, when you hate, when you spend billions on a jet designed to kill, but you complain about every penny designed to save a life — and when you somehow justify all this as “righteousness” or you do these things in the name of Christ…
Then you have become your own worst enemy, and you are on the wrong side of God’s grace.
The first sermon Jesus preached was “Change the way you think and act accordingly.” That is the meaning of the word “repent.” “Change the way you think and act accordingly because the Kingdom of God is coming, and it’s getting closer every day.” And the law of the Kingdom is love, and if you cannot love, then you cannot live in the Kingdom.
Jesus Christ is the clearest revelation of God. That is what Christians have claimed. In Jesus, we see God most clearly.
Jesus taught non-violence. Therefore, non-violence is Divine Revelation at its clearest.
But someone will retort: “But the Bible says ‘an eye for an eye.'”
Yes, the Bible does say that, but Jesus, the clearest revelation of God, rejected that. That was an imperfect revelation, and the perfect revelation — Jesus Christ — corrected it.
If the Bible is the Constitution of the Kingdom of God, then Jesus is the Amendment process.
An imperfect revelation of God is still a revelation of God, and would be useful, even necessary, until a clearer, more perfect revelation had come. There, “an eye for an eye” was the best we could do at one time. But even then, “an eye for an eye” was a limit, not a requirement. It meant that if you must have revenge, you can only seek it to the extent of the wrong. You cannot chop off a head for the loss of an eye. Jesus, the clearest revelation of God, rejects “an eye for an eye.”
If we still cling to the imperfect revelation instead of the perfect one, then it can only be because we do not like what we see when we see God clearly. We reject the perfect revelation of God — Jesus Christ — for the imperfect; we replace God’s will for us to love with our will to seek revenge and to hate. We create an idol of suffering for others and call it God, and we serve it with the fervor that should be reserved for Christ alone.
They replaced God’s truth with a lie. They worshiped the creature instead of the Creator, who is worthy to be praised forever. (Romans 1:25, The New Peace Treaty)
We are no different that those who hung Jesus on the cross. No, that is not true. We are WORSE than those who hung Jesus on the cross because we claim to be his friends as we do it. We are Judas the betrayer. Enemies cannot betray you, only your friends, only those you love, only those who claim to love you. Judas was paid in silver — a lot of silver. Over and over, we do it for free. And then we entomb him in our hearts, refusing to let the stone ever be rolled away by our love and by our forgiveness.
They have been filled with every form of injustice, evil, greed, and hatred. They’re full of envy, murderous intentions, petty rivalries, deceit, and they’re just plain mean. They gossip. They slander each other. They’re hateful toward God. They’re snotty. They’re arrogant. They brag about themselves. They’re ingenious at coming up with new ways to do horrible things to each other. They ignore their parents. They’re stupid, dishonest, heartless, and they don’t care about anyone else.(Romans 1:29-31, The New Peace Treaty)
Forgive us, Lord, for we do not know what we are doing…