It has come to me many times as I read the instruction in the Sermon on the Mount to ‘love your enemies’ that it is of course concerning others… but it also includes us… the individual… the self doing the loving. So if we take the instruction and break it out some and make application to the enemies that are inside our minds, emotions, souls, memories, bodies, choices, and experiences that have caused us pain, grief and dysfunction… this loving enemies thing may take on a whole new meaning. This is not some goofy self-love; but loving the enemy self enough to make friends and get rid of unwanted baggage and the unwanted enemies.
In Matthew’s gospel we read:
“You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor’ and ‘hate your enemy.’ This was the Law.
Jesus said: “But I say to you, love your enemy pray for those who persecute you, so that you may be like your Father in heaven.”
Luke’s gospel adds:
“Love your enemies!
Do good to those who hate you. Bless those who curse you. Pray for those who hurt you.”
It is difficult for me to love my own internal enemies enough to turn the cursing, hurt and pain into freedom but that is what must happen to not have any enemies.
“You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor’ and ‘hate your enemy.’ But I say to you, love your enemy and pray for those who persecute you, so that you may be like your Father in heaven.” Jesus