I wrote the following in January 2016. I never finished it and am not sure where I was going with it. Most likely it started with the terrorist attacks in Turkey. It definitely preceded the attempted coup. It may have had something to do with 45 (aka – his highness Trump.) But seeing how our world has become a very screwy place, I’ve decided to post it as is, with the addition of a couple of quotes at the end.
Love Thy Enemy
Although I successfully mastered 16 years of Catholic schooling, I am not a particular religious person. Still “Catholic”, yes. I have family who are Catholic, Seventh Day Adventist, Baptist, Muslim, Agnostic, and Atheist. I have countless Jewish friends, friends many other religions, as well as Atheist friends.
For those of you who practice any religion, or claim to be of any faith, I have a question for you. What happened to “Love they enemy”?
Most if not all versions of the Christian New Testament preach:
Matthew 5:43-48 (New International Version)
43 “You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor[a] and hate your enemy.’ 44 But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, 45 that you may be children of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. 46 If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that? 47 And if you greet only your own people, what are you doing more than others? Do not even pagans do that? 48 Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.
Luke 6:27-36 (New International Version)
27 “But to you who are listening I say: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, 28 bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you. 29 If someone slaps you on one cheek, turn to them the other also. If someone takes your coat, do not withhold your shirt from them. 30 Give to everyone who asks you, and if anyone takes what belongs to you, do not demand it back. 31 Do to others as you would have them do to you.
32 “If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners love those who love them. 33 And if you do good to those who are good to you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners do that. 34 And if you lend to those from whom you expect repayment, what credit is that to you? Even sinners lend to sinners, expecting to be repaid in full. 35 But love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back. Then your reward will be great, and you will be children of the Most High, because he is kind to the ungrateful and wicked. 36 Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful.
The first 5 books of the Bible’s Old Testament (the Pentateuch) are also the Jewish Torah. They teach:
When you encounter your enemy’s ox or ass wandering, you must take it back to him. When you see the ass of your enemy lying under its burden and would refrain from raising it, you must, nevertheless, raise it with him. (Exodus 23:4–5; Mishpatim.)
“The word ‘Torah’ is a tricky one, because it can mean different things in different contexts. In its most limited sense, “Torah” refers to the Five Books of Moses: Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy. But the word “Torah” can also be used to refer to the entire Jewish bible (the body of scripture known to non-Jews as the Old Testament and to Jews as the Tanakh or Written Torah), or in its broadest sense, to the whole body of Jewish law and teachings.” http://www.jewfaq.org/torah.htm.
So from the body of Jewish law and teachings, we get this from Mishlei, known as the Book of Proverbs in the Christian Bible:
If your enemy is hungry, give him bread to eat; and if he is thirsty, give him water to drink. (Proverbs 25:21)
Added October 2018:
And from the Quran, this:
41:33-34 And good and evil deeds are not alike. Repel evil with good. And he who is your enemy will become your dearest friend.
25:63 And the servants of the Most Merciful are those who walk upon the earth easily, and when the ignorant address them [harshly], they say [words of] peace.
What does your religion say on this?