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← Love Your Enemies and Seek to Do Them Good - Tim Conway

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Showing Revision 4 created 10/25/2017 by Carrie Spradlin.

  1. This man hated God.
  2. And he just thought it
    was the greatest thing
  3. to try to provoke this godly woman.
  4. She was God fearing.
  5. She was a holy woman.
  6. And he was a wicked man.
  7. Of course, he was old.
  8. He'd be there at home with her
  9. while husband's off at work.
  10. And he would just try to provoke her
  11. and he would speak in
    foul, wicked language.
  12. He'd try to make her life hard.
  13. He tormented her.
  14. Foul, perverse language;
  15. insults, mocking...
  16. he knew she was a Christian.
  17. And he was just trying to get her
  18. to blow her testimony.
  19. He just tried to jab at her.
  20. And on the inside, she was angry.
  21. She would have to leave the room and weep.
  22. He was trying to provoke her.
  23. She was exasperated.
  24. You know how it can be,
  25. if you try to go to your husband
  26. in a situation like that
  27. and it's his dad.
  28. Well, it's not that bad.
  29. Well, whatever happened,
  30. she wasn't able to get the kind of help
  31. she was obviously looking
    for from her husband.
  32. So she went to her pastor.
  33. She said, pastor, here's this situation...
  34. you know what the pastor told her?
  35. Every time he provokes
    you, return kindness.
  36. Every time he tries to get you;
  37. every time he speaks wickedly;
  38. every time he tries to provoke;
  39. every time he's cruel;
  40. every time he's unkind;
  41. every time he acts wickedly towards you
  42. return his evil with kindness.
  43. And I'll tell you, that good woman
  44. by the help of Christ,
  45. she went back there
  46. and it wasn't easy.
  47. She felt provoked inside.
  48. There'd be tears.
    There'd be hurt.
  49. Inner turmoil.
  50. But she sought to return good to that man.
  51. And I can't remember in the story
  52. how long that went on;
  53. how much time went by,
  54. but I can tell you this,
  55. there was one day he did
  56. an especially wicked thing to her,
  57. and she went over and she
    began to cook cookies.
  58. She turned away from
    all her other chores
  59. and all her other household work.
  60. She cooked those cookies.
  61. You know what?
  62. They were the favorite
    kind of that old man.
  63. And she put them on a plate,
  64. and as graciously as she could,
  65. she came over,
  66. and she set that plate down on the table
  67. in front of him.
  68. And you know what?
  69. That old sinner couldn't take it anymore.
  70. He fell out of that chair
    on his face on the floor
  71. and he just wept.
  72. And she hadn't seen that coming.
  73. She didn't know what
    was going on inside.
  74. Every time she was returning
    that kindness to him,
  75. it was grating on his conscience.
  76. It was stabbing him.
  77. And it was hurting - it was
    like a burning coal in there.
  78. And finally, this was too much.
  79. It just broke that wicked old man.
  80. Like burning coals...
  81. And you know what?
  82. The testimony is that
    that man was converted.
  83. That man repented.
  84. That man saw in the example
  85. of his godly daughter-in-law something.
  86. He asked God to forgive him.
  87. He asked that lady to forgive him.
  88. He was broken.
  89. He's in glory now!
  90. Because she lived like that.
  91. Brethren, let me tell you something.
  92. This is the Word of God.
  93. This is for real.
  94. One of the reasons we
    don't know more of this
  95. is because we don't live more like this.
  96. That's a reality.
  97. Folks, it's not because it isn't true.
  98. It's not because it doesn't work.
  99. It's because we are far more often
  100. avenging ourselves than trying to show
  101. love and kindness when we're wronged.
  102. We tend to do what
    Jesus Christ did not do.
  103. You know what? We get offended.
  104. We get hurt.
    We get wronged.
  105. What happens?
  106. This little thing comes up in us.
  107. We want to get even.
  108. And even though we
    may not strike out
  109. in a way that is just manifestly visible,
  110. what do we do?
  111. By our words, by our actions,
  112. by our avoidance,
  113. we give these little subtle deals.
  114. Well, I just won't talk to them.
  115. I'm just going to avoid where they are.
  116. And it may not be just the outward strike,
  117. but we've been offended.
  118. We're going to respond.
  119. We're going to make it known.
  120. We're going to get back.
  121. We're going to somehow deal a blow
  122. for the blow we feel like we've received.
  123. Brethren, are you really hearing this?
  124. That's the thing.
  125. Are you hearing this?
  126. Can you imagine what it
    would be like for this church
  127. if every time somebody grieved us,
  128. offended us or hurt us,
  129. we immediately responded
    with a loving action?
  130. A loving gesture?
  131. Folks, when someone wrongs us,
  132. we know it.
  133. Right?
  134. Folks, enemies are called enemies
  135. because they do the things
    that only enemies would do.
  136. And that doesn't mean that sometimes
  137. that enemy isn't another Christian.
  138. Basically, we can size
    up an enemy this way:
  139. It's not just a lost person
    that does this evil.
  140. It's anybody that
    strikes out against us.
  141. And the fact is, that even when
  142. it's an enemy that
    strikes out against us,
  143. we can leave that
    vengeance to the Lord.
  144. The Lord will repay.
  145. You say what? He's going to repay them?
  146. Not if there a child of God,
  147. but there's going to be payment.
  148. Christ will take that payment.
  149. Which you should be glad of that
  150. because He's taken yours too,
  151. and you've offended other people.
  152. But I'll tell you what,
  153. an enemy is anybody
    that comes against us.
  154. It's anybody that mistreats us.
  155. And I mean it's a true mistreatment.
  156. It's a true offensive deal to us.
  157. It's a true persecution to us.
  158. It can come from any quarter.
  159. And bottom line, enemies
    do what enemies do.
  160. And we feel what enemies do.
  161. This isn't a mystery to us.
  162. If anything in our
    life gets our attention,
  163. I mean really gets it,
  164. it's the actions of enemies against us.
  165. We feel it.
  166. And you know what Paul says?
  167. He comes in right there
  168. and he says, OK, I can say this to you:
  169. It isn't something you have to
    wonder whether it happened.
  170. When you feel offended,
    when you feel hurt,
  171. you know you do.
  172. And what he's saying is,
  173. right at that point,
  174. take that hurt,
  175. and return in love.
  176. It takes the grace of God.
  177. Natural man cannot do this.
  178. What did God say?
  179. What is the promise?
  180. He says we are
    predestinated to be conformed
  181. to the image of Christ.
  182. If you're a true child
    of God, I guarantee you,
  183. this will be conformed
    into your very image.
  184. It will be stamped in there.
  185. By the grace of God,
  186. by the power of the Holy Spirit,
  187. you can do this.
  188. Folks, take every offense, every hurt;
  189. let their wrongdoing to you
  190. be an immediate prompt in your life
  191. to love them.
  192. Are you really hearing what I'm saying?
  193. Look, if you're not hurt right now,
  194. you're thinking, I can do that.
  195. But when you've been
    hurt, it's not so easy.
  196. And I can imagine in a church like this,
  197. as the church grows...
  198. OK, let me give you an example.
  199. OK, we've got a sister.
  200. Sister hears some ladies
    got together for coffee.
  201. How come I wasn't invited?
  202. And by the way,
  203. who was it that planned that thing?
  204. Who was it that did the inviting?
  205. They didn't invite me?
  206. I'm hurt.
  207. Well, you know what?
  208. Next time I have a gathering,
  209. I'm not going to invite her.
  210. You know what?
  211. You'll laugh,
  212. but I know the way people think.
  213. And I know what hurts people.
  214. And you know what?
  215. In a church where a lot of sinners,
  216. saved though many of them may be,
  217. try to live together
    and function together,
  218. we hurt each other.
  219. And look, we could be talking
    about enemies out there,
  220. but there are things that
    people do in here as well.
  221. And the thing that I'm saying is,
  222. whether it's an enemy out there
  223. or whether it's somebody in here,
  224. you hear down through the grapevine,
  225. so and so said such and such about you.
  226. Well, that hurts me.
  227. Well, you know what?
  228. Rather than saying by
    my retaliatory words,
  229. or by my avoidance or by my silence
  230. to that person I'm going to get them back,
  231. you know what you do?
  232. You say, "that hurt."
  233. Now, Father, show me
    specifically how to do and act
  234. a specific manifest act
    of love toward that person.
  235. If we have a church
    that's functioning like that,
  236. guess what?
  237. We don't have people like
    I've heard some people
  238. that have left the church
    because they didn't feel like
  239. they were being given enough attention.
  240. You know what you
    do when you get hurt
  241. because you don't feel like
    you're getting enough attention?
  242. You specifically according
    to this don't retaliate
  243. by I'm going to show them - I'm leaving!
  244. That's exactly the opposite of this.
  245. What this is is saying if somebody does
  246. strike out against me like that,
  247. then I'm going to return love.
  248. If somebody offends me,
    somebody comes against me
  249. I'm going to do this.
  250. Folks, take every hurt, every wrong,
  251. every unkindness, every attack,
  252. every provocation, every offense,
  253. every criticism, every crushing, mauling,
  254. biting, wounding thing,
  255. and make it specifically an occasion for
  256. doing that person good.