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Posts Tagged ‘love your enemies’

Jesus sword Mathew 10:34The atheist who posted this graphic online might be disappointed to find out that when I saw it, I felt flushed with gladness.

I love opportunities to reveal the truth about what Jesus of Nazareth (who many people believe is the Divine Son of God) was – and is – all about.

The “verse” referred to here is from one of the original source documents of Jesus’ physical life on earth. Not only is it dead-on accurate, it’s NOT, as the atheist supposes a Christian declaring, out of context.

But exactly what is that context?

I get the feeling the atheist believes it means Jesus came to commit violence, start wars, fuel the fires of ugly tribalism – you know, all the unpleasant deeds carried out by certain charismatic leaders (read: Osama Bin Laden).

But anyone who knows anything about the original source documents of His life will admit that nowhere does Jesus start or participate in wars. Nowhere does He kill even one person and nowhere does He even injure anyone slightly.

That’s right, not even tripping anyone (and goodness knows, there were a lot of people who intensely disliked Jesus and probably deserved to be tripped). In fact, there isn’t a single word in the original source documents about Jesus even touching a sword.

There is, however, a scene where one of Jesus’ followers cuts off the ear of a Roman soldier who was part of a nighttime posse that came to arrest Jesus on false charges. What did Jesus do? He healed the guy’s ear.

OK, so the whole atheist premise of this graphic is false.

But here’s what’s true: deciding to follow Jesus often does NOT bring peace – not at first. And following Jesus often divides, just like a sword divides.

Here’s the simplest example: when I decided to follow Jesus in 2002, it divided me from my biological family – none of whom follow Jesus.

And at the time, I felt anything but peace because they didn’t (and still don’t) understand what I’ve done and why. In fact, they don’t really want to know, because our culture tells them to never think about anything related to faith.

Jesus knew – and knows – that His way is NOT the way of the world.  Lose your life to gain it? Love your enemies and pray for them? Follow Jesus and get eternal life in Heaven?

All these concepts are poison to our culture, which insists that:

  • Enemies should be hated and trampled
  • The key to life is gaining possessions, power and multiple sexual partners
  • Wondering what happens to us when we die is stupid.

But maybe you’re at the stage of life where the trophies our culture offers seem…empty. Pointless. If that’s the case, then the way of Jesus is worth a serious investigation. Even if it divides you from family and friends.

Interested? Then post your thoughts below and let’s have a conversation.

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