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Summary: Looking at Jesus’ teachings on how to treat our enemies - a Children’s service

What Would Jesus Have Us Do To Our Enemies – Luke 6:27-36

Gladstone Baptist Church – 13/2/05 am – Children’s Service

Invite children down the front & give them worksheets for the service.

Question : I want you to think of someone that you don’t like. Maybe it is someone who teases you. Maybe it is someone who is nasty to you. Maybe it is someone who won’t let you play with them.

We all have people in our lives that we don’t like. People who we think are our enemies. If you had the chance – what would you like to do to your enemies.

While I continue to talk Boys and Girls I want you to write down on your piece of paper their name – or draw a picture of them on your sheet of paper.

Mums & Dads we also have people that we don’t like also. People who press our buttons and just make our blood boil. Often they are people who are different to us. They have different political views or they are from a different religion (the JW’s, Muslims, New Agers, Atheists). They might be those who express their sexuality in a different way or someone at work who has such a different personality to us that we can’t bear it. What names would you write down on your paper if I asked you to name your enemies. – People who rub you up the wrong way

Late one summer evening a weary truck driver pulled his rig into an all-night service station to get some food. The waitress had just served him when three tough looking, leather jacketed motorcyclists - of the Hell’s Angels type - decided to give him a hard time. Not only did they verbally abuse him, one grabbed the hamburger off his plate, another took a handful of his chips, and the third picked up his coffee and began to drink it.

How would you respond? Well, this trucker did not respond as one might expect. Instead, he calmly rose, picked up his bill and walked to the front of the restaurant, paid his bill and went out the door. The waitress followed him to put the money in the cash register and stood watching out the door as the big truck drove away into the night.

When she returned, one of the bikers said to her, "Well, he’s not much of a man, is he?" She replied, "I don’t know about that, but he sure ain’t much of a truck driver. He just ran over three motorcycles on his way out of the parking lot."

You laugh at that because that is what we’d like to do to those who make life difficult for us. When someone does something to us, our first instinct is to get back at them! Our first instinct is to make them pay and to hurt as much as they hurt us.

But that is not what Jesus would have us do. In Luke 6, Jesus gives us a different response to have. What would Jesus have us do to our enemies? He tells us we are to LOVE THEM.

What does that mean? Does it mean that we are to go put a big sloppy kiss on their cheek, give them a big hug and say – “I love you.” No. Does it mean we are to become best friends? That might happen, but it might not either. Then what does it mean.

The Bible has several words for love.

- There is the type of love that some Mums and Dads have for each other. Their eyes flutter and their heart races. They think that the other person is so beautiful or handsome. They love them. That’s not the love Jesus is speaking about here. That is Eros love.

- There is the type of love that we have for friends. We love friends because we have things in common with them. We love hanging out with them. They look after us and we look after them. That’s not the love Jesus is speaking about here. That is Phileo love.

- The love that Jesus is talking about here is love that is not deserved. It is a love that you decide to give. I will love that person even though they tease me. Even though they push me around. Even when they take advantage of me. I will choose to love them. That is the love Jesus is talking about here. That is Agape love.

Is it hard to love the person whose name you have written down on your pieces of paper. It sure is, but God says – love is a decision. Does that person who gives you a hard time deserve your love? No. They don’t deserve any kindness at all. But Jesus says “that doesn’t matter.” Real love is love that isn’t earned or deserved. You can love a person whether they deserve it or not.

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