God spares Nineveh, and Jonah is
angry. He said: God, I knew you'd do that. That's why I didn't go, because I know
you're gracious and forgiving, and you forgive sins. I knew it, and you did it.
Now let me die.
Think of the one person or family
or group of people in the world or the land that you hate the most. Think of
your ultimate enemy at this moment in your life.
"Ah," you say,
"but I'm a Christian. I don't hate anybody!" God bless you. If you
don't hate anybody, I'll give you a second choice. Think of the person you love
the least. Some of you say, "I'm a Christian. I love everybody."
Okay, that's pretty neat. Number three then: Think of the person you like
the least. You've got to answer that one. Or if you can't answer that one, who
is the person or group you fear the most?
The point is, I want you to think
of the person you know is your enemy, the person who does not mean you well,
the person who has no done you well. Think of that person right nowâ€”your enemy.
Suppose you had it in your power
to help that person or that group of people to prosper enormously, spiritually
and materially. If it were in your power, would you do it? Or if without your
help they prospered, how would you feel right now if this enemyâ€”this group of
people or this personâ€”suddenly flourished spiritually, were healed, were
abundantly blessed financially?
Now you understand Jonah's situation.
He did bless those people, and they did prosper and respond.
"Love your enemies" is
so clear all through the New Testament. We see it here in the Old, but also in
the New Testamentâ€”in the fulfillment of God's gracious plan for our lives
through Jesus ...
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