Sunday, September 7, 2014

This is a test ...

Jesus told His disciples,

"I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you ..."
 Matthew chapter 5, verse 44

I have come to a testing: Do I, can I, love and pray for the zealots who are oppressing, killing, and enslaving people, Christian and non-Christian, worldwide?

The kind of love and prayer that Jesus commands would be for me an act of will and a choice made purely in obedience to Him, because every fiber of my being cries instead: "God, send these oppressors and killers straight to hell!" To a fate infinitely worse than the horrors they are inflicting.

Yet I can imagine why Jesus in His compassion would have me pray for these oppressors. He knows what hell is. I don't. Jesus asks all to repent and turn to Him and avoid it. He cried out on the cross, "Father forgive them for they don't know what they are doing!" Can I do less?

So I have prayed this: "Father, please turn these oppressors from evil, to You. Also, please destroy those of them who refuse to turn. May we who are blessed with freedom do our best to protect and defend their intended victims and provide them safe haven."

God may give me a better prayer, but this is the best I have right now.

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