"Fighting back" with love

Can it possibly work to return good for evil? Can a person who returns benevolence and forgiveness for cruelty and persecution possibly avoid being a perpetual victim? There's only one way a follower of Christ Jesus can answer such questions. And that's with a firm "Yes."

The Master's words on the subject are uncompromising. In his famous Sermon on the Mount, he told his disciples, "Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you." Then Jesus went on to explain why an irrepressible, ever-resilient spiritual affection is so central to Christian discipleship. Because without it, we would not be living what we really are—as the "children" of a heavenly Father who loves all His sons and daughters impartially. A God who "maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust" (Matt. 5:44, 45).

June 19, 1995

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