LivingTruth.cc — The Preaching and Teaching Ministry of Kevin A. Pierpont

Loving God, Loving People – Part 9, Loving Your Enemies – Matthew 5:43-48

Kevin A. Pierpont
Higgins Lake Baptist Church
5/23/04

In August 1983, Russell Stendal was taken hostage into the jungle of Columbia, South America, by a band of guerrilla soldiers. For nearly 5 months he learned what it really means to love one’s enemies. He wrote a letter home, saying, “I am in danger only of losing my life; they are in danger of losing their souls.” Through kindness, Russell befriended his guards. One day the commander told him, “We can’t kill you face to face; we like you. So we will have to kill you in your sleep.” God enabled Russell to forgive, but for the next 10 days and nights he couldn’t sleep. A submachine gun was repeatedly thrust in his face under his mosquito net, but the guards couldn’t bring themselves to pull the trigger. On January 3, 1984, Russell was released. When he said goodbye, tears filled the eyes of some of his captors. (Our Daily Bread)

If Russell were here today I think he’d have a thing or two to teach us about loving our enemies.

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Loving God, Loving People, Part 4 – Loving Yourself – Matthew 22:34-40

You’ve heard the saying, “in order to love others you first have to love yourself.” We’re often told that we need to “look out for number one.” We’re bombarded with messages from our society that you have to put our own interests first. Advertising campaigns are driven by the message that you ought to put yourself first. Slogans like, “you deserve a break today.” “Have it your way.” “Because I’m worth it.” “Be all that you can be.” All of these are pleas for you to do what’s best for you and in so doing to buy the product that will make you feel better. The message is clearly sent to us that we need to love ourselves.

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Loving God, Loving People, Part 2 – Matthew 22:34-40

Kevin A. Pierpont
Higgins Lake Baptist Church
3/28/04

Richard Wurmbrand, who spent fourteen years suffering in a Communist prison, recalled the following true story:

“A Christian was sentenced to death. Before being executed, he was allowed to see his wife. His last words to his wife were, ‘You must know that I die loving those who kill me. They don’t know what they do and my last request of you is to love them, too. Don’t have bitterness in your heart because they kill your beloved one. We will meet in heaven.’ These words impressed the officer of the secret police who attended the discussion between the two. After he told me the story in prison, where he had been put for becoming a Christian.” (Michael G. Moriarty, The Perfect 10: The Blessings of Following God’s Commandments in a Post Modern World, pp. 141-142)

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Loving God, Loving People, Part 1 – Matthew 22:34-40

Kevin A. Pierpont
Higgins Lake Baptist Church
3/21/04

We’re beginning a new series of studies today called “Loving God, Loving People.”

We’re going to discover that real Christianity drives a believer to love God with everything—with his whole life.

An understanding of Matthew 22:34-40 will help us see that at the root of our effectiveness as Christ’s Church is our level of faithfulness in Loving God and Loving People.

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