Feb 6 (Daily reading: Exodus 22-24) Tucked away in all these laws that God gave Moses is one that indicates God’s principle for dealing with an enemy. “If you come across your enemy’s ox or donkey wandering off, be sure to return it. If you see the donkey of someone who hates you fallen down under its load, do not leave it there; be sure you help them with it” (23:4-5, NIV). This is a specific example of a Christian principle later expounded by Jesus: “Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you” (Mt. 5:44). I quote from my book: “Jesus’s words need no amplification. It is clear that He is asking us to love our enemies. I am writing this book during a difficult time in our country. We have been divided for a long time…Perhaps we need to rethink the question of enemies. Some say, “How could anyone have that political viewpoint?” Does having an opposing political position make them the enemy? Does a racist see someone as an enemy just because his skin color is different? That does not make any sense when we recognize that God made all of us!
Judy and I spent our career working in a country where we were the minority, working with people whose appearance was different from ours. I never met anyone in that delightful experience that I considered my enemy, or who saw me as the enemy, just because we were different. The truth is they became our family! I am certain that Satan is very content when we see each other as enemies, since that takes our attention away from him, the one who is our true enemy. I have an idea that when we show love to someone whom we consider our enemy, we discover that we are no longer loving the enemy. They ceased to be the enemy when we began to show love to them!” (“We Love Because God First Loved Us,” pp. 39-40).