Loving Those Who Are Hard to Love (Through the Gospels)
"For if you love those who love you, what reward do you have? Do not even the tax collectors do the same?” ^Matthew 5:46 (Click to read entire passage)
The goal of the Christian life is to become love. Maturity in Christianity can be measured by how much you love. Jesus Himself says, “the world will know you are my disciples by your love for one another" (John 13:35). Apostle Paul picks up on this and says, “If I have the faith to move mountains but do not have love, I am nothing” (1 Corinthians 13:2). Apostle John takes it even further and says, “Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love” (1 John 4:8).
It is our love for God and love for people that makes our faith distinct from all other religions. But what is real biblical love? How is Kingdom love measured? It is measured by loving those that are hard to love. It is one thing to love your friends and family, it is something entirely else to love your enemies. In fact, I would say it is impossible to love your enemies.
Our natural selves will hate and harbor bitterness towards our enemies and those who have wronged us. But Jesus says, “Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you” (Matthew 5:44). Wow. How is this even possible? It is only possible for the one who has tasted the love of God. The love of God transcends all earthly loves. A person who has truly tasted and experienced God’s love receives a supernatural ability to not only forgive, but even love those who have wronged them. How?
Because they know how deeply they have wronged God; yet God has poured His love out on them. When you realize how utterly sinful and wicked your heart is but yet how God has completely embraced you in His love, you cannot help but show the same to others. Jesus’ love is a supernatural love.