Throwback Thursday ~ You Can’t Love Jesus with a Heart Full of Hate: 7 Reasons to Love and Forgive Your Enemies (2022)

Originally published March 30, 2018

Throwback Thursday ~ You Can’t Love Jesus with a Heart Full of Hate: 7 Reasons to Love and Forgive Your Enemies (1)

Human beings are capable of egregious depravity toward one another. The atrocities of war. Horrifying crimes. The cruelty of torture and persecution. All in an attempt to fill a wicked heart’s insatiable lust for evil, power, money, or the approval of a god.

And no one knew more about that than Jesus.

Jesus was born into a tumultuous and oppressive world. Long gone were the golden days of David and Solomon when Israel was a self-governing nation at the peak of power and opulence. In Jesus’ time, subjugation and sorrow were the order of the day as God’s people writhed under the iron boot of the Roman Empire.

Even from Jesus’ birth narrative, we catch a glimpse of the terrorism running roughshod over his homeland. The first event Matthew relates to us about Jesus’ life is what is often called “the massacre of the innocents.”

Herod the Great, in a yet another paranoid frenzy to protect his throne, had his soldiers march through the streets of Bethlehem and the surrounding area and slaughter every baby boy under the age of three. Infants, ripped from their mothers’ arms, only to have their skulls savagely crushed. Toddlers at play, run through with the sword.

Luke tells us that Jesus’ relatives resided in Bethlehem, so it’s probable that this heinous event directly impacted His family. Perhaps He lost a cousin he would have played with as a child, or a nephew He might have apprenticed alongside in Joseph’s workshop.

Jesus was also no stranger to crucifixion. It was a common occurrence in His day, and victims of crucifixion were made a public spectacle to serve as a warning to any that dared disturb the tenuous peace of Pax Romana.It is likely He witnessed crucifixions on occasion and might even have been acquainted with someone who was crucified.

We know Jesus was well acquainted with one casualty of brutality. Jesus’ beloved cousin John – who had baptized Him, about whom Jesus declared there was no one greater – was imprisoned by Herod Antipas to appease his ill-gotten wife, and subsequently executed, his head on a platter a present for a dancing girl.

All this misery at the hands of the Romans is to say nothing of the of the scorn, rejection, and persecution Jesus experienced from His own people. “A prophet is not without honor,” He said, “except in his hometown and among his relatives and in his own household.”

(Video) The Power of Forgiveness | Billy Graham Classic

And in the end, Jesus was personally subjected to unparalleled agony from an alliance between those in His household of Israel and His Roman enemies. Betrayed by a close friend. Slandered, falsely accused, and convicted by Jewish leaders. Flayed, mocked, and spat upon by soldiers. Scorned and reviled by the crowds. Coronated with a crown of thorns and nailed to a cross by the decree of Pilate.

Jesuslived a lifedespised and rejected by men; a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief.

Ifanyone had cause to hate someone who had hurt Him or those He loved – an individual, a people group, a religion’s adherents, a nationality, a race – it was Jesus.

And yet time and again Jesus’ example and mandate to those who would follow Him was not to hate, take revenge, or curse the enemy, but to love and forgive.

It is spiritually dishonest to claim to be a follower of Christ while nourishing and cherishing hatred in your heart against an enemy. Here are just a few of the reasons God gives us in His Word:

1.
You can’t love Jesus with a heart full of rebellion

You have heard that it was said,‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’But I say to you,Love your enemies andpray for those who persecute you,so that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven.”
Matthew 5:43-45a

“But I say to you who hear, Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who abuse you…But love your enemies, and do good, and lend, expecting nothing in return, and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High, for he is kind to the ungrateful and the evil. Be merciful, even as your Father is merciful.”
Luke 6:27,35-36

Christ instructs us love our enemies. This isn’t an option or a suggestion. It is a direct order from our Commander in Chief. Who has the right to say he is a loyal soldier of the King while knowingly standing in rebellion against His command?

Who has the right to say he is a loyal soldier of the King while knowingly standing in rebellion against His command?

Tweet

2.
You can’t love Jesus with a heart
that hates His creation

So God created man in his own image, in the image of God
he created him; male and female he created them.

Genesis 1:27

(Video) Billy Graham - Forgiveness

Your enemy was created in the image of God, and intimately and intricately formed by His handsin the womb – just like you were. To hate another image bearer is to hate what God lovingly created, blessed, and said is good.

3.
You can’t love Jesus with a heart
that denies the sin He saved you from

Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. And such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.
1 Corinthians 6:9-11

The dirt you were saved out of wasn’t any cleaner than the dirt your enemy currently wallows in. You used to be just like him. And it wasonlythe grace and mercy of God that snatched you up out of that dirt, washed you off, and saved you. You don’t have any bragging rights. You’re not any better than he is. You’re just a sinner God rescued.

4.
You can’t love Jesus with a heart full of unforgiveness

…and forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors…For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you, but if you do not forgive others their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.
Matthew 6:12,14-15

‘You wicked servant! I forgave you all that debt because you pleaded with me. And should not you have had mercy on your fellow servant, as I had mercy on you?’ And in anger his master delivered him to the jailers, until he should pay all his debt.
So also my heavenly Father will do to every one of you,
if you do not forgive your brother from your heart
.”
Matthew 18:32b-35

Your enemy – that person you hate and refuse to forgive because he hurt you – has sinned infinitely more against a holy and righteous God than he could ever sin against you. And yet God is still willing to forgive him. Who do you think you are to deny him your forgiveness if your Master is willing to forgive him? Are you above God?

5.
You can’t love Jesus with a heart full of rotten fruit

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.
Galatians 5:22-23

The things in this list characterize the person who is indwelt by the Holy Spirit, a.k.a., a Christian. Hatred isn’t on the list. The heart that is full of love, joy,peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control leaves no room for hatred, and indeed is antithetical to hatred.

6.
You can’t love Jesus with a
heart full of lies and murder

Whoever says he is in the light and hates his brother is still in darkness…But whoever hates his brother is in the darkness and walks in the darkness, and does not know where he is going, because the darkness has blinded his eyes.

Everyone who hates his brother is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life abiding in him.

(Video) "LOVE: The Way To Victory" (Pt. 1/3) | Rev. Kenneth E. Hagin | * (Copyright Protected)

If anyone says, “I love God,” and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen cannot love God whom he has not seen.
1 John 2:9,11; 3:15; 4:20

Hatred is so out of place in the heart of a Christian that God says you’re still lost if hatred characterizes your life. Hating shows the world a picture of an unsaved person, not a saved person. It is not a truthful testimony that you are a new creation in Christ.

7.
You can’t love Jesus with a heart
that won’t follow His example

And Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.”
Luke 23:34

For while we were still weak, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. For one will scarcely die for a righteous person—though perhaps for a good person one would dare even to die— but God shows his love for us in that
while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
Romans 5:6-8

Jesus didn’t just tell us to love, forgive, and extend mercy to our enemies. He practiced what He preached. In the middle of His agony and suffering, He forgave. Jesus gave every drop of His blood, every beat of His heart, and absorbed every ounce of God’s wrath for people who hated Him. His enemies. People He had every human and divine right to annihilate for what they had done to him. Including you and me. If we aren’t willing to follow His example and lay down our lives that our enemies might be saved, we have no part in Christ.

Jesus gave every drop of His blood, every beat of His heart, and absorbed every ounce of God’s wrath for people who hated Him.

Tweet

There are some things Jesus never said about loving and forgiving your enemies.

He never said it would be easy.

He never said you could do it in your own strength.

He never said you’d have to do it alone.

(Video) Day of Triumph (1954)

Forgiving someone who has wounded and scarred you in unimaginable ways might be the hardest thing you ever attempt in this lifetime.Do it anyway.

Yes, youcan.

Forgiving someone who has wounded and scarred you in unimaginable ways might be the hardest thing you ever attempt in this lifetime.Do it anyway.

Tweet

You can do it with the strength of the One who endured the cross to forgive you.

You can do it with the peace He purchased for you with His blood.

You can do it through the love with which He first loved you.

You can do it as the God of all comfort wraps His everlasting arms around you.

You can do it as Christ’s nail-scarred hands draw you close to His riven side and carry you from the bondage of hatred to the freedom of forgiving.

Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.
Ephesians 4:31-32

Because you can’t love Jesus with a heart full of hate.

(Video) Throwback Thursday/Oldie But Goodie

FAQs

What were the last words Jesus cried out on the cross John 19 30? ›

And at the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani? which is, being interpreted, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me? And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? that is to say, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?

What Bible verse says love your enemies? ›

This is the second verse of the final antithesis, that on the commandment to "Love thy neighbour as thyself". In the chapter, Jesus refutes the teaching of some that one should "hate [one's] enemies".
...
Matthew 5:44
BookGospel of Matthew
Christian Bible partNew Testament
2 more rows

How did Jesus express love? ›

Throughout His earthly ministry, Jesus showed His love for others by blessing and serving the poor, the sick, and the distressed. He told His disciples, “This is my commandment, That ye love one another, as I have loved you” (John 15:12; see also John 13:34–35; Moroni 7:46–48).

What does Jesus say about being in love? ›

Owe no one anything, except to love each other, for the one who loves another has fulfilled the law." “Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs."

What was Jesus real name? ›

Jesus' name in Hebrew was “Yeshua” which translates to English as Joshua.

What is the 7 Last Word of God? ›

To the “good thief”: “Truly, I say to you, today you will be with me in paradise.” To Mary, his mother: “Woman, behold your son”... and to John: “Behold your mother.” To God, his Father: “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” To all: “I thirst.”

How do you pray for someone who mistreats you? ›

Prayer for Faith to Trust God's Loving Purpose

I know I can find the strength to heal if I can first find the faith to trust You. I need faith in Your loving purpose for allowing this hurtful person to inflict damage in my life. May Your will be done in me, and in the life of the person who hurt me. Amen.

What does God say about how do you treat your enemies? ›

You have heard that it was said, 'Love your neighbor and hate your enemy. ' But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you ..." (Matthew 5:39 and 5:43-44) Christians are called to love those who despise us and persecute us. To follow in Christ's footsteps is to walk in the way of love.

Who is your enemy Bible? ›

In the Bible, my enemy is someone who does not like me, someone who wants to do me harm, never someone I don't like or to whom I want to do harm. Jesus doesn't allow us to be that way. In fact, He said we are to love our enemies and pray for those who persecute us (Mt 5:44).

What God says about true love? ›

1 Corinthians 13:4-5: Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.

How does God want us to love? ›

He wants us to experience incredible, life-changing love, mercy, and compassion not only from him, but from those around us. And he wants us to show that love to others. The call to love and help others in tangible ways — especially those weaker than ourselves — runs throughout the Bible.

How did Jesus want us love? ›

When it comes to love, Jesus raised the bar astronomically. He teaches us to love our enemies, turn the other cheek, and walk the extra mile. To our human minds, that sounds completely outrageous–but that's the point. If we want to love like Jesus, we have to open our hearts and our minds.

How do you know if God is calling you out of a relationship? ›

Here are 7 signs God is telling you to end that relationship:
  • The relationship is against God's word. ...
  • The person encourages you to disobey God. ...
  • You have no control when you're with them. ...
  • You are being treated poorly. ...
  • The person is more important to you than God. ...
  • The relationship has become toxic and overbearing.
Oct 24, 2019

What is God's purpose for marriage? ›

God instituted the husband-wife relationship as an equal partnership with Adam and Eve (see Genesis 2:24). Marriage is central to God's plan for our happiness during this life and our eternal happiness in the life hereafter.

Is romance a sin? ›

Of course romance IS NOT a sin in a relationship,provided the two people aren't married or attached to a partner! Romance is about love,affect tion,tenderness,and caring for someone…. love IS NOT a sin. Romance between two people is Christ like,and is the same essence as God's love for us.

What is Jesus phone number? ›

In some Christian numerology, the number 888 represents Jesus, or sometimes more specifically Christ the Redeemer. This representation may be justified either through gematria, by counting the letter values of the Greek transliteration of Jesus' name, or as an opposing value to 666, the number of the beast.

Did Jesus have a wife? ›

"Christian tradition has long held that Jesus was not married, even though no reliable historical evidence exists to support that claim," King said in a press release.

What was Jesus last name? ›

What was Jesus's Real Name? - YouTube

What was Jesus last words before he died? ›

Luke 23:46

Here Jesus closes with the words of Psalm 31:5, speaking to God the Father. We see his complete trust in his heavenly Father. Jesus entered death in the same way he lived each day of his life, offering up his life as the perfect sacrifice and placing himself in God's hands. Fairchild, Mary.

What did Jesus looks like? ›

For many scholars, Revelation 1:14-15 offers a clue that Jesus's skin was a darker hue and that his hair was woolly in texture. The hairs of his head, it says, "were white as white wool, white as snow. His eyes were like a flame of fire, his feet were like burnished bronze, refined as in a furnace.”

What language did the Jesus speak? ›

Most religious scholars and historians agree with Pope Francis that the historical Jesus principally spoke a Galilean dialect of Aramaic. Through trade, invasions and conquest, the Aramaic language had spread far afield by the 7th century B.C., and would become the lingua franca in much of the Middle East.

Will God punish those who hurt me? ›

Here is what the Scripture says: God is just. He will punish through everlasting destruction and those who are so punished will be shut out from the presence of the Lord, forever. This will happen when Jesus Christ is revealed. This is one of the hardest truths in the Bible.

What happens when you pray for those who hurt you? ›

Prayer changes things

Finally, as we pray for those who've hurt us, our hearts change. We grow stronger, wiser, and free. Additionally, and most wonderfully, the ones we're praying for may also change. Prayer changes things!

How do I pray for revenge? ›

Pray them aloud and pray them boldly as they take us into the brokenness, disorder, and mess of our humanity. Embrace the dissonance of God's word when it strikes you as uncomfortable, disagreeable, or flat out wrong.

What the Bible says about those who hurt you? ›

Luke 6:27-28

27 But I say unto you which hear, Love your enemies, do good to them which hate you, 28 Bless them that curse you, and pray for them which despitefully use you.

Does God protect me from my enemies? ›

2 Timothy 4:18. 18 The Lord will rescue me from every evil deed and bring me safely into his heavenly kingdom. To him be the glory forever and ever. Amen.

What happens when you pray for your enemies? ›

Prayer for your enemies is one of the most profound forms of love because it requires you to truly desire that something good happens to them. You may do nice things for your enemies without a genuine desire for them to succeed. Prayer for them, on the other hand, is interceding with God on their behalf.

How do you fight against your enemies? ›

How to Beat Your Enemies
  1. Do right, so you can be in the right. Enemies take full advantage of your weaknesses. ...
  2. Know when to fight. ...
  3. Give 'em rope. ...
  4. Know what they're saying about you, and make sure you address it. ...
  5. Don't live life in permanent battle mode.
Dec 1, 2013

How do I pray for my enemies? ›

Jesus admonishes us to “love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you.” (Lk 6:27-28). Paul does the same by saying, “If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink.” (Rm 12:20).

Is kissing a sin? ›

No. The Bible doesn't explicitly forbid kissing between two unmarried people. A Christian couple that is dating with the consideration of marriage or is engaged doesn't necessarily sin because they share a kiss in a manner that retains their purity.

Is it a sin to live together before marriage? ›

The Church's teaching on cohabitation is not an “arbitrary” rule. Living together before marriage is a sin because it violates God's commandments and the law of the Church.

What does the Bible say living together before marriage? ›

We see in the Bible that God intended for couples to live together only after they were married. The emphasis in this Bible verse is the fact that a man leaves his father and mother, indicating that the man and woman lived with their families, not each other, before they got married.

Does God force us to love him? ›

For those who are interested in the life after this one, there is no doubt some curiosity about where we are going and how to get there. The followers of Christ place their faith in his promises and believe he has the power to save and secure a place in heaven for them.

What is the best way to love God? ›

How to love God more than money: 8 practical ways
  1. Have a Regular Prayer Time. I am not talking about praying over a meal or even talking to God as you drive to work. ...
  2. Serve Others. The second greatest commandment (after loving God) is to love others. ...
  3. Be a Giver. ...
  4. 10 examples of generosity in the Bible and how to follow them.
Nov 2, 2021

Does God love everyone the same? ›

Does God truly love all persons? Most Christians think the obvious answer to this question is, "Yes, of course he does!" Indeed, many Christians would agree that the very heart of the gospel is that God so loved the whole world that he gave his Son to make salvation available for every single person.

What did Jesus value most? ›

He valued Life. He is Life and he came to give it. He did not take the life of anyone. He preserved it and when people lost it, he restored it.

How can I love Jesus more? ›

Love Jesus More Than You Love Anything - YouTube

How can we love one another as Jesus has loved us? ›

By serving and forgiving others with real love, we can be healed and receive the strength to overcome our own challenges. During the Last Supper, the Savior gave a new commandment to His disciples, saying: “A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another.

How do you know if God sent your mate? ›

One of the ways to know if God has sent you the one, is if they are leading you straight back to Christ. The person God is leading you to will be constantly seeking your best interest and never ask you to compromise on your beliefs or standards.

How do I know if God sent me my husband? ›

To guide you in recognizing the man sent by God for you, here are some signs from the Bible that you should watch out for.
  1. He speaks the words of God. ...
  2. He practices what he speaks. ...
  3. He doesn't lie. ...
  4. He doesn't corrupt your good character. ...
  5. He honors and respects you. ...
  6. He is just and merciful. ...
  7. He makes sacrifices.
Jun 27, 2022

Who was God married to? ›

God had a wife, Asherah, whom the Book of Kings suggests was worshiped alongside Yahweh in his temple in Israel, according to an Oxford scholar. God had a wife, Asherah, whom the Book of Kings suggests was worshipped alongside Yahweh in his temple in Israel, according to an Oxford scholar.

Why do humans marry? ›

Individuals may marry for several reasons, including legal, social, libidinal, emotional, financial, spiritual, and religious purposes. Whom they marry may be influenced by gender, socially determined rules of incest, prescriptive marriage rules, parental choice, and individual desire.

What are the 3 most important things in a marriage? ›

What Are the Three Most Important Things in a Relationship?
  • Intimacy. You may think of the sexual aspect of relationship when you hear the word intimacy, but this relational building block covers so much more. ...
  • Commitment. ...
  • Communication.
May 28, 2021

Is it OK to kiss before marriage? ›

Ultimately, deciding to kiss before marriage is a personal decision between you, God, and the person you are dating. If there are any doubts, convictions, or temptation to do more, it's best to follow where God is guiding you and wait to kiss until you are married.

Is it a sin to kiss your girlfriend? ›

Mutual affection between loving partners is not considered sinful by most Christian denominations. It does mean, however, that we should be careful about what is in our hearts and to make sure we maintain self-control when kissing.

What does the Bible say about women's breasts? ›

But after the recreation of my human spirit, I came across Proverbs chapter 5:18 and 19. Proverbs 5:18b says “…and rejoice with the wife of your youth.” Verse 19b says, “… Let her breast satisfy you at all times.” This scripture does not say that it is the breasts of only a young girl that gives a man satisfaction.

What was finished on the cross? ›

The complete work of his atonement

Jesus came to seek and save the lost. He came to give his life as a ransom for many, and on the cross he says, “It is finished.” He has borne the guilt of our sins. He has endured the punishment of our hell. The divine wrath has been spent on him.

What is the meaning of tetelestai? ›

Background. The title comes from the Greek word τετέλεσται (tetelestai) meaning "it is completed", which according to St. John, is the last word of Jesus on the cross.

Who was on the foot of Jesus Cross? ›

This very well-known text is one of the most important Marian passages in Scripture. Mary is present at the foot the Cross, not only as a loving mother, but also as a disciple who follows her Master unto the hour of His exaltation by the Father. He is the obedient Son unto death, and death on the cross.

What was Jesus's wife's name? ›

Saint Mary Magdalene

What language did the Jesus speak? ›

Most religious scholars and historians agree with Pope Francis that the historical Jesus principally spoke a Galilean dialect of Aramaic. Through trade, invasions and conquest, the Aramaic language had spread far afield by the 7th century B.C., and would become the lingua franca in much of the Middle East.

What is the shortest Bible verse? ›

"Jesus wept" (Koinē Greek: ἐδάκρυσεν ὁ Ἰησοῦς, romanized: edákrusen ho Iēsoûs, pronounced [ɛˈdakrysɛn (h)o i. eˈsus]) is a phrase famous for being the shortest verse in the King James Version of the Bible, as well as many other versions.

Videos

1. John MacArthur: Why Does God Allow So Much Suffering and Evil?
(Ligonier Ministries)
2. Message | The Grudge | Week 2 - Faith to Forgive
(Family Worship Center)
3. You have a right to be forgiven, part 4
(Promised Land Ministries, Incorporated)
4. Who Do You Want to Be? 'More Than Conquerors' (Archive 10/6/13)
(BOND: Rebuilding the Man)
5. VeggieTales | God Wants Me To Forgive Them | Full Episode | 25th Anniversary | Kids Cartoon
(VeggieTales Official)
6. The Chase Begins | Critical Role | Campaign 2, Episode 112
(Critical Role)

You might also like

Latest Posts

Article information

Author: Rev. Leonie Wyman

Last Updated: 09/07/2022

Views: 5714

Rating: 4.9 / 5 (59 voted)

Reviews: 90% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Rev. Leonie Wyman

Birthday: 1993-07-01

Address: Suite 763 6272 Lang Bypass, New Xochitlport, VT 72704-3308

Phone: +22014484519944

Job: Banking Officer

Hobby: Sailing, Gaming, Basketball, Calligraphy, Mycology, Astronomy, Juggling

Introduction: My name is Rev. Leonie Wyman, I am a colorful, tasty, splendid, fair, witty, gorgeous, splendid person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.