ST. PAUL AFRICAN METHODIST EPISCOPAL CHURCH
P.O. Box 619 - 98 W. Cedar St. Cedarville, Ohio 45314 email@example.com
Rev. Kristie Charleston-High, Pastor
Welcome, and thank you for visiting St. Paul A.M.E.- Cedarville Church online. We hope that our website highlights the variety of worship, fellowship and service opportunities available. Please feel free to read more about our church on this site, or come in for a visit. We would love to greet you and share with you our love for Jesus Christ and for you, our neighbor.
We believe that the door to salvation is always open and so are the doors to our church. Our mission is to be fully devoted to Jesus by opening our arms to those in search of the truth. We show God’s love and concern for our fellow man at every opportunity. Through works of charity and opening our doors to listen and love, we feel that we are walking in the footsteps of Jesus Christ.
We Have Returned to In-person
Worship and Meetings!
(Vaccination Status Verified)
Join us weekly for Sunday Services via Facebook Live at:
Any additional services will be announced on our notice board and on our website.
Sunday Morning Worship begins at 11:00 a.m.
We invite you to join our mailing list and receive emails we send out about upcoming church/community news and or event schedules.
Food for Thought
“Love your enemies, and do good,
and lend, expecting nothing in return,
and your reward will be great, and
you will be sons of the Most High,
for he is kind to the ungrateful and
the evil. Be merciful, even as your
Father is merciful”
Jesus’ command in today’s passage
to love our enemies (Luke 6:27) is nearly impossible to practice. Anyone can love those who love them (v. 33), but men rarely love their foes. Such individuals must be extraordinarily patient and kind; in fact, their characters must mirror God’s nature (vv. 35–36). This is only possible for those who walk in the Spirit because our flesh seeks revenge on those who do us ill.
Christ’s call for us to love our enemies is not naïve. We are not to read one portion of Scripture in isolation from another. Consequently, what Jesus demands here does not contradict texts regarding punishment for criminals and self-defense (Ex. 22:1–4). Jesus exhorts us to be as “wise as serpents” when we deal with others (Matt. 10:16). Seeking retribution against those who oppress the weak and defenseless is not unloving. Sometimes, the only way we can love our enemies is to put them in a place (such as prison) where they will be hindered from doing more damage and incurring greater consequences for their sins.
Such situations are, of course, rare for us. More often, we face individuals who insult us with words (this is what Jesus means in Luke 6:29) or take advantage of us in relatively minor ways (v. 30). We must not seek vengeance upon such people (v. 35). Of course it is hard for us to feel love toward an enemy, but Christian love “is not something primarily that happens to us. Love, rather, is a duty, a requirement. Love has more to do with activity than it has to do with feeling” (R.C. Sproul, A Walk with God: Luke, p. 115).
This involves forgiving those who do not deserve our pardon. We imitate our Father in this, but not because He forgives those who deny Christ like He commands us to do. Our imitation lies in our willingness to forgive the undeserving, just as He also showed His willingness to do the same when He sent Jesus into the world to save His people (John 3:16; 6:40).
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