Lesson 10                              *August 28–September 3

Loving Our Enemies?

Memory Text: Romans 12:18 NIV 18 If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone.


Sabbath Afternoon

Psalms 34:14 NIV 14 Turn from evil and do good; seek peace and pursue it.

Psalms 34:14 KJV 14 Depart from evil, and do good; seek peace, and pursue it.


Jesus and His Enemies

Luke 23:34 KJV 34 Then said Jesus, Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do. And they parted his raiment, and cast lots.

Luke 23:34 KJV 34 Then said Jesus, Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do. And they parted his raiment, and cast lots.

Luke 23:1-34 KJV 1 And the whole multitude of them arose, and led him unto Pilate. 2 And they began to accuse him, saying, We found this fellow perverting the nation, and forbidding to give tribute to Caesar, saying that he himself is Christ a King. 3 And Pilate asked him, saying, Art thou the King of the Jews? And he answered him and said, Thou sayest it. 4 Then said Pilate to the chief priests and to the people, I find no fault in this man. 5 And they were the more fierce, saying, He stirreth up the people, teaching throughout all Jewry, beginning from Galilee to this place. 6 When Pilate heard of Galilee, he asked whether the man were a Galilaean. 7 And as soon as he knew that he belonged unto Herod's jurisdiction, he sent him to Herod, who himself also was at Jerusalem at that time. 8 And when Herod saw Jesus, he was exceeding glad: for he was desirous to see him of a long season, because he had heard many things of him; and he hoped to have seen some miracle done by him. 9 Then he questioned with him in many words; but he answered him nothing. 10 And the chief priests and scribes stood and vehemently accused him. 11 And Herod with his men of war set him at nought, and mocked him, and arrayed him in a gorgeous robe, and sent him again to Pilate. 12 And the same day Pilate and Herod were made friends together: for before they were at enmity between themselves. 13 And Pilate, when he had called together the chief priests and the rulers and the people,

Luke 23:14-34 14 Said unto them, Ye have brought this man unto me, as one that perverteth the people: and, behold, I, having examined him before you, have found no fault in this man touching those things whereof ye accuse him: 15 No, nor yet Herod: for I sent you to him; and, lo, nothing worthy of death is done unto him. 16 I will therefore chastise him, and release him. 17 (For of necessity he must release one unto them at the feast.) 18 And they cried out all at once, saying, Away with this man, and release unto us Barabbas: 19 (Who for a certain sedition made in the city, and for murder, was cast into prison.) 20 Pilate therefore, willing to release Jesus, spake again to them. 21 But they cried, saying, Crucify him, crucify him. 22 And he said unto them the third time, Why, what evil hath he done? I have found no cause of death in him: I will therefore chastise him, and let him go. 23 And they were instant with loud voices, requiring that he might be crucified. And the voices of them and of the chief priests prevailed. 24 And Pilate gave sentence that it should be as they required. 25 And he released unto them him that for sedition and murder was cast into prison, whom they had desired; but he delivered Jesus to their will. 26 And as they led him away, they laid hold upon one Simon, a Cyrenian, coming out of the country, and on him they laid the cross, that he might bear it after Jesus. 27 And there followed him a great company of people, and of women, which also bewailed and lamented him. 28 But Jesus turning unto them said, Daughters of Jerusalem, weep not for me, but weep for yourselves, and for your children. 29 For, behold, the days are coming, in the which they shall say, Blessed are the barren, and the wombs that never bare, and the paps which never gave suck. 30 Then shall they begin to say to the mountains, Fall on us; and to the hills, Cover us. 31 For if they do these things in a green tree, what shall be done in the dry? 32 And there were also two other, malefactors, led with him to be put to death. 33 And when they were come to the place, which is called Calvary, there they crucified him, and the malefactors, one on the right hand, and the other on the left. 34 Then said Jesus, Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do. And they parted his raiment, and cast lots.

Romans 5:10 KJV 10 For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life.


Loving Our Enemies (Matt. 5:44, Luke 6:27-36).

Matthew 5:44 KJV 44 But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you;

Luke 6:27-36 KJV 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. 29 And unto him that smiteth thee on the one cheek offer also the other; and him that taketh away thy cloke forbid not to take thy coat also. 30 Give to every man that asketh of thee; and of him that taketh away thy goods ask them not again. 31 And as ye would that men should do to you, do ye also to them likewise.

Luke 6:32-36 32 For if ye love them which love you, what thank have ye? for sinners also love those that love them. 33 And if ye do good to them which do good to you, what thank have ye? for sinners also do even the same. 34 And if ye lend to them of whom ye hope to receive, what thank have ye? for sinners also lend to sinners, to receive as much again. 35 But love ye your enemies, and do good, and lend, hoping for nothing again; and your reward shall be great, and ye shall be the children of the Highest: for he is kind unto the unthankful and to the evil. 36 Be ye therefore merciful, as your Father also is merciful.

Luke 23:34 KJV 34 Then said Jesus, Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do. And they parted his raiment, and cast lots.

Proverbs 24:17 KJV 17 Rejoice not when thine enemy falleth, and let not thine heart be glad when he stumbleth:

Proverbs 25:21 KJV 21 If thine enemy be hungry, give him bread to eat; and if he be thirsty, give him water to drink:

Matthew 5:38-42 KJV 38 Ye have heard that it hath been said, An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth: 39 But I say unto you, That ye resist not evil: but whosoever shall smite thee on thy right cheek, turn to him the other also. 40 And if any man will sue thee at the law, and take away thy coat, let him have thy cloke also. 41 And whosoever shall compel thee to go a mile, go with him twain. 42 Give to him that asketh thee, and from him that would borrow of thee turn not thou away.

Ephesians 4:26 KJV 26 Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath:

Ellen G. White, Medical Ministry, pp. 253-254

The minister will often be called upon to act the part of a physician. He should have a training that will enable him to administer the simpler remedies for the relief of suffering. Ministers and Bible workers should prepare themselves for this line of work, for in doing it they are following the example of Christ. They should be as well prepared by education and practice to combat disease of the body as they are to heal the sin-sick soul by pointing to the Great Physician. They are fulfilling the commission Christ gave to the Twelve and afterward to the Seventy, "Into whatsoever city ye enter, . . . heal the sick that are therein, and say unto them, The kingdom of God is come nigh unto you." Christ stands by their side, as ready to heal the sick as when He was on this earth in person.--MS. 88, 1902. {MM 253.1}

     As He Is Perfect Our work is to strive to attain in our sphere of action the perfection that Christ in His life on the earth attained in every phase of character. He is our example. In all things we are to strive to honor God in character. In falling day by day so far short of the divine requirements, we are endangering our soul's salvation. We need to understand and appreciate the privilege with which Christ invests us, and to show our determination to reach the highest standard. We are to be wholly dependent on the power that He has promised to give us. {MM 253.2}

     Just before making this requirement, the Saviour said to His disciples: "Love your enemies, bless them that curse you." We are to love our enemies with the same love that Christ manifested toward His enemies by giving His life to save them. Many may say, "This is a hard commandment; for I want to keep just as far as I can from my enemies." But acting in accordance with your own inclination would not be carrying out the principles (p. 254) that our Saviour has given. "Do good," He says, "to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you; that ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for He maketh His sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust." This scripture illustrates one phase of Christian perfection. While we were yet enemies of God, Christ gave His life for us. We are to follow His example. {MM 253.3}

     Love Your Enemies I must write still more of the scripture, "Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you; that ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for He maketh His sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust. . . . Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect." I have been deeply impressed by these words. We must understand their real meaning. If we would represent Christ's character by obeying this requirement, there would be a great change in evildoers. Many souls would be convicted of their sinfulness and converted through the impressions made upon them by our refusal to resent the evil actions of those controlled by satanic agencies. We must prayerfully and determinedly work on the Lord's side. In all the issues that provoke the soul we should resist the evil and refuse to abuse the evildoer. {MM 254.1}

     Let us daily represent Christ's great love by loving our enemies as Christ loves them. If we would thus represent the grace of Christ, strong feelings of hatred would be broken down and into many hearts genuine love would be brought. Many more conversions than are now seen would follow. True, it will cost us something to do this. If the ministers who preach the word, and those who occupy prominent positions in the medical missionary work, would regard it as their special duty to practice the teachings of the word in the daily life, bringing themselves under the discipline of the requirements of Christ and working under His authority, their consistent course would lead many to break away from the tyranny of Satan's service and to take their stand under the bloodstained banner of Prince Immanuel. (p. 255) {MM 254.2}


Increase Our Faith

Matthew 18:21-22 KJV 21 Then came Peter to him, and said, Lord, how oft shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? till seven times? 22 Jesus saith unto him, I say not unto thee, Until seven times: but, Until seventy times seven.

Luke 17:3-5 KJV 3 Take heed to yourselves: If thy brother trespass against thee, rebuke him; and if he repent, forgive him. 4 And if he trespass against thee seven times in a day, and seven times in a day turn again to thee, saying, I repent; thou shalt forgive him. 5 And the apostles said unto the Lord, Increase our faith.

Ephesians 2:8 KJV 8 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:

Romans 6:10-11 KJV 10 For in that he died, he died unto sin once: but in that he liveth, he liveth unto God. 11 Likewise reckon ye also yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Romans 6:4 KJV 4 Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.


The Grace of Forgiving (Jer. 31:31-34, Matt 6:12).

Jeremiah 31:31-34 KJV 31 Behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel, and with the house of Judah: 32 Not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day that I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt; which my covenant they brake, although I was an husband unto them, saith the LORD: 33 But this shall be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel; After those days, saith the LORD, I will put my law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and will be their God, and they shall be my people. 34 And they shall teach no more every man his neighbour, and every man his brother, saying, Know the LORD: for they shall all know me, from the least of them unto the greatest of them, saith the LORD: for I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more.

Matthew 6:12 KJV 12 And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.

Hebrews 8:12 KJV 12 For I will be merciful to their unrighteousness, and their sins and their iniquities will I remember no more.

Isaiah 53:4-6 KJV 4 Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted. 5 But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed. 6 All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the LORD hath laid on him the iniquity of us all.

Philippians 2:5-8 KJV 5 Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: 6 Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: 7 But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: 8 And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.


Why Should We Love Our Enemies?

Proverbs 15:1 KJV 1 A soft answer turneth away wrath: but grievous words stir up anger.

Deuteronomy 10:13 KJV 13 To keep the commandments of the LORD, and his statutes, which I command thee this day for thy good?

Romans 12:20-21 KJV 20 Therefore if thine enemy hunger, feed him; if he thirst, give him drink: for in so doing thou shalt heap coals of fire on his head. 21 Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good.

1 Thessalonians 5:15 KJV 15 See that none render evil for evil unto any man; but ever follow that which is good, both among yourselves, and to all men.

Friday September 3

Ellen G. White, Christ’s Object Lessons, pp. 243-251 (not included with lesson help)

Ellen G. White, Christ’s Object Lessons, pp. 248-249

The Holy Spirit through the apostle Paul charges us: "If there be therefore any consolation in Christ, if any comfort of love, if any fellowship of the Spirit, if any bowels and mercies, fulfil ye my joy, that ye be like-minded, having the same love, being of one accord, of one mind. Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves. Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others. Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus." Phil. 2:1-5. {COL 248.1}

     But sin is not to be lightly regarded. The Lord has commanded us not to suffer wrong upon our brother. He says, "If thy brother trespass against thee, rebuke him." Luke 17:3. Sin is to be called by its right name, and is to be plainly laid out before the wrongdoer. {COL 248.2}

     In his charge to Timothy, Paul, writing by the Holy Spirit, says, "Be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine." 2 Tim. 4:2. And to Titus he writes, "There are many unruly and vain talkers and deceivers. . . . Wherefore rebuke them sharply, that they may be sound in the faith." Titus 1:10-13. {COL 248.3}

     "If thy brother shall trespass against thee," Christ said, "go and tell him his fault between thee and him alone: if he shall hear thee, thou hast gained thy brother. But if he will not hear thee, then take with thee one or two more, that in the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may be established. And if he shall neglect to hear them, tell it unto the church: but if he neglect to hear the church, let him be unto thee as an heathen man and a publican." Matt. 18:15-17. {COL 248.4}

     Our Lord teaches that matters of difficulty between Christians are to be settled within the church. They should (p. 249)

not be opened before those who do not fear God. If a Christian is wronged by his brother, let him not appeal to unbelievers in a court of justice. Let him follow out the instruction Christ has given. Instead of trying to avenge himself, let him seek to save his brother. God will guard the interests of those who love and fear Him, and with confidence we may commit our case to Him who judges righteously. {COL 248.5}

     Too often when wrongs are committed again and again, and the wrongdoer confesses his fault, the injured one becomes weary, and thinks he has forgiven quite enough. But the Saviour has plainly told us how to deal with the erring: "If thy brother trespass against thee, rebuke him; and if he repent, forgive him." Luke 17:3. Do not hold him off as unworthy of your confidence. Consider "thyself, lest thou also be tempted." Gal. 6:1. {COL 249.1}

     If your brethren err, you are to forgive them. When they come to you with confession, you should not say, I (p. 250) do not think they are humble enough. I do not think they feel their confession. What right have you to judge them, as if you could read the heart? The word of God says, "If he repent, forgive him. And if he trespasses against thee seven times in a day, and seven times in a day turn again to thee, saying, I repent; thou shalt forgive him." Luke 17:3, 4. And not only seven times, but seventy times seven--just as often as God forgives you. {COL 249.2}