What does it mean to Pray for your enemies?


Thank you very much for taking out time to ask these questions.

Let me start by affirming to the fact that I am also a strong believer of the Old and New Testament of the Bible. I believed that the Old Testament is fulfilled in the life and ministry of Jesus Christ who usher us into the era of grace.

In answering your questions, let me first of all drop the very Words of Jesus Christ who is our example and who is our Lord from Matthew 5:43-48 NKJV.

43 "You have heard that it was said, 'You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.'
44 "But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you,
45 "that you may be sons of your Father in heaven; for He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust.
46 "For if you love those who love you, what reward have you? Do not even the tax collectors do the same?
47 "And if you greet your brethren only, what do you do more than others? Do not even the tax collectors do so?
48 "Therefore you shall be perfect, just as your Father in heaven is perfect.

When Jesus asked us to pray for our enemies, what was the prayer point?

I think Matthew 5:43-48 and the Lord ’s Prayer is a good pattern given to us by Jesus Christ to follow to achieve praying the right prayer.

What does it mean to PRAY FOR your enemies?

The English dictionary and the Bible dictionary all defined the word “FOR” the same way. That is: On behalf, in service of, aimed at, toward, because of etc.

From this definition, you will agree with me that there is nothing in this definition nor from Jesus’s word in Matthew 5:43-48 that suggest that it’s a prayer that is “not in favour of a subject”. On the other hand, PRAYING AGAINST simply implies that you make a prayer that is hostile and not favorable against a person.

So, how should we pray for our enemies?

I give full details in my article titled, “HOW TO PRAY FOR YOUR HUMAN ENEMIES. To give you a summary; to pray for your enemies is to:
1. Pray for their salvation.
2. Pray that God will restrain them from the evil they do.
3. Pray for their deliverance from the grip of the devil that has possess them.
4. Pray for divine Justice.

I hope I helped you? I am always to open to answer any question you might have or a contrary opinion.

Shalom.


-Pst. Gavin Aleogho

How to deal with known human enemies


You will agree with me that the enemy is not powerful than your God.

When your relationship with God is intact... There is no way the devil can overcome or overpower you.

1. Ensure that you are standing right with God. The devil can only strike when the edge is broken.
2. Be more conscious of the presence and power of your God than the limited power and presence of your enemy.
3. Resist the devil (James 4:7). This is down by standing on the authority of Christ to halt every satanic manipulation.

I hope this is clear?

I am open to help with any other question.

Shalom.

Question on Exodus 22:18 and Proverbs 11:21


The scripture you quoted in your question are Exodus 22:18 and Proverbs 11:21a.

It reads
“Thou shalt not suffer a witch to live.” Exodus 22:18.
“Though hand join in hand, the wicked shall not be unpunished:” Proverbs 11:21a

Let me start by stating that the Bible is divided into two aspect, which is the Old Testament and the New Testament. The Old Testament was primarily for the Jews who where under the Laws and the Prophets like Moses, Elijah and the rest.

The coming of Christ Jesus gave rise to the New Testament where we belong. We as believers are not under the old Jewish religion which was govern by the Old Testament. We are believers, under the New Testament which is under the authority and the finished work of Christ on the cross. Thus, Christ is our Master, Lord and Examples.

So, because we are under the authority of Jesus Christ, we take direct instruction from Him, not Moses or Elijah. So, if Moses says something and Jesus counter that instruction with a new instruction, we has followers of Christ (not Moses) will have to follow the new Instruction form Jesus. Except you are under the lordship of Moses.

Moses through God’s leading gave the instruction that “suffer not a witch to live”. Who is a witch? Is a human being who is possessed with an evil spirit to do havoc. Right? And a witch is an enemy of every good thing and everybody.

So, Jesus’ new instruction is not to kill your enemy the witch, but to love them and pray for their salvation.

Matthew 5:38-48.
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.
43 Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt love thy neighbour, and hate thine enemy.
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;
45 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.
46 For if ye love them which love you, what reward have ye? do not even the publicans the same?
47 And if ye salute your brethren only, what do ye more than others? do not even the publicans so?
48 Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.

If anyone insist on praying against and kill witches, then you should do it physically, because that was how they were doing it then.

Besides, if we must apply Exodus 22:18, then we should also kill idol worshipers as stated in verse 20, and also apply all the ceremonial and judicial laws in that same Exodus 22. Because there is no room for selective application of the scripture.

The wicked will definitely not go unpublished either in this life or in the life to come. Because in this life the law and justice will catch up with the wicked. Take for example, when an arm robber is caught, he is punished (in whatever way) for it by the law of the land. And in the life to come, if the wicked did not repent, he or she will spend eternity in hell.

I hope I helped you.

I am still open to any clarity you might have either on this subject or on another biblical subject.

Shalom.

THE TREASURE IN OLD GOSPEL SONGS

-By Gavin Aleogho
 

After giving my life to Christ, while growing up in faith, I was exposed to divert gospel songs that were sang by different artist especially foreign artists. Today, I may refer to such songs as old songs and to the artist as old-time gospel Artists.

In the process of time, I have come to realize that some old songs have stood out for me, out of my many old collections. They stood out because I found that today, by simply listening to such old songs, beside the memories it brings and the lessons I was taught from them, I am reconnected to my “first love” for Christ.  I don’t think this is peculiar to me alone.

For me, some old-time gospel Artists whose old songs keep ministering to me are: Bob Fitts, Don Moen, Maranatha singers, Michael Smith, Cece Winans songs, Women of Faith, Juanita Bynum. From my country men; I have two people, which are Panam Percy Paul and Wale Adenuga.

Thanks to our contemporary gospel Artists, otherwise known as gospel musicians. I am a fan of most of the present Nigeria contemporary gospel Artist. Some of my favourites are: Sinach, Nathaniel Bassey, David G, Victoria Orenze, Rev. Igho. I must state that beyond the names mentioned here, I have many others, and I believe there are other great “Holy Ghost” filled artist which I don’t know. Thus, I am not saying these are the only best Artists in Nigeria, because even me, I have a credit to an album which you can download for free by clicking on this link.

What informs my choice of artists or gospel songs I listen to?

I look beyond voice, sound production, lyrics or the physical peripherals. Although, this cannot be ignored in making a choice. Beyond these features, I try to look at the level of God a gospel Artist carries. To put it another way, I look at how connected to God he or she is. Does the Artist have a closer walk with the Holy Ghost? I believe, you can only give what you have. Thus, every Artist is inspired based on the level of God he or she carries. One that is full of God will produce a song “out of his belly”, thereby helping me to flow in the presence of God.

Lest I divert your attention to something else, the essence of this article is to help you reconnect back to your “first love” for Jesus by simply listening to they old gospel songs that ministered to you greatly, when you began your walk with God.

It is time to go back to some of your old gospel music collections.

REFRESHED BY MUSIC

-By Gavin Aleogho

 “Music is one of the fairest and most glorious gifts of God, to which Satan is a bitter enemy, for it removes from the heart the weight of sorrow, and the fascination of evil thoughts.”  -Martin Luther 

There is something about “Holy Spirit inspired music” which I discovered from my early walk with the Lord that has made me to remain glued to them. And that is the spiritual refreshing I get from it. This is besides the worship experience I am drawn into. I guess, I am not the only one that has such testimony.

King Saul experienced deliverance from the evil spirit of depression that was tormenting him whenever David the lad played music for him. And never forget that David played under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. This implies that, a Spirit inspired music can wade-off evil and demonic presence. You can try it also. Whenever you are depressed, sad, fearful or in doubt, switch on a good gospel music and see the great deliverance you will experience.

Another lesson from the story shows that a Holy Spirit inspired song changes the atmosphere of the place where it is being played. It charges the atmosphere with the presence of God. And you should know that the presence of God comes with peace, glory, freedom and rest.

You can enjoy the presence of the Holy Ghost in your house by consciously changing the atmosphere of your house with good gospel songs; I do this a lot and can tell you for real that it works.

“And so it was, whenever the spirit from God was upon Saul, that David would take a harp and play it with his hand. Then Saul would become refreshed and well, and the distressing spirit would depart from him”. 1 Samuel 16:23.

Get rid of secular songs that invoke demonic presence around you, which influences you with the spirit of sexual seduction, lust, violence, greed, selfishness etc.

Your music selection should pass the Philippians 4:8 and the Colossians 3:2-5 tests. They should be songs that are promoting truth, noble, just by God’s standard, pure, lovely and good report. They should be songs that promote godly virtues and are praiseworthy. It should be songs that help you to foster your relationship with your Father-God.

Don’t waste your time listening to the songs of fools (Ecclesiastes 7:5). Keep your heart clean. Stay refreshed in the spirit and be inspired.

It is better to heed the rebuke of a wise person than to listen to the song of fools.” Ecclesiastes 7:5.

YOU ARE IDENTIFIED BY YOUR FRUIT

- By Gavin Aleogho

The production of fruit is what differentiates a fruitful tree and an unfruitful one. The fruit of a tree is what makes it visible to all what kind of tree it is. So, when you are in doubt about what tree you are looking at, check out for its fruits.

In the same vein, what shows that we are in Christ and that we are His Disciples is when we produce fruit after His manner. We cannot say we are of the light and are producing fruits of unrighteousness. That is contrary to the nature of Christ, our Saviour.

You are not identified by your activities or by what you say or what you claim to be. The saying that “action speaks louder that voice” applies here. When an individual gets to a new environment, people begin to watch that person for a period of time, maybe for some couple of months or years. After which, they begin to form an opinion about this individual based on the fruit of his character he has manifested over the period of time.

You can’t fool anybody, just like Jesus spoke about the false prophets, that, “by their fruit we shall know them”, so also does that saying applies to you. By your fruit people gets to know what kind of person you are. You may fool them initially, but after some period of time, your true character will begin to manifest.

Thus, as Disciples of Jesus Christ, you are expected to exhibit the same character trait of Jesus. You are expected to speak, act and do things like Jesus. Anything contrary to this only points to the fact that you are never a Christian but only a wolves in Christian (sheep) clothing. You are only an imposter.

The only major sign of a true Christian to the people of the world, as a proof of his followership of Jesus is simply by the kind of fruit that he manifests. And by fruit, it implies character traits as spelt out in Galatians 5:22-23.

The sign of our Christianity to the world is not by the long and loud prayers we make in our apartments, nor the big size of our Bible or the saintly way we dress, but by our godly character. We should strive to produce godly fruits; it is by this people will know that we are Jesus’ Disciples.

“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law”. Galatians 5:22-23.

GROW SPIRITUALLY OR DIE

-By Gavin Aleogho

No man is born a full-grown overnight. Growth to any living organism comes with the passage of time and as a result of having the right nutrients. When any plant or animal does not take in the right nutrients or when it is not exposed to the right environment, it is bound to die. Our walk of faith is similar to this.

When an individual gets born again, although he or she might be an adult, but he is considered a spiritual babe in Christ, thus the term “born again” or “born anew”. He needs to intentionally “work out his salvation” to ensure that he grows up to become a matured Christian, this is solely an individual responsibility. Although, God has made the provisions available to all that wants to attain spiritual maturity; an enabling environment of the Church and the fellowship of Believers. He has also made available the spiritual nutrients needed which is the Word of God (1 Peter 2:2).

Today, besides the Bible, there are countless numbers of spiritual (Christian) books available to help you grow.  There are innumerable numbers of articles written, both on the web and on hardcopy which are written by inspired Christian authors to help you grow spiritually.

Thank God for the internet; there are countless numbers of audio and video messages online readily available for you to take advantage of. Thus, “oh man thou art inexcusable”.

I will quickly want to put a caution here, just as I will not recommend just any gathering in the name of a Church for you to fellowship with, I will also warn you not to consume anyhow material whether written, audio or video. For some are never inspired by the Holy Spirit to bless you.

The whole essence of this short piece is to wake you up to take responsibility for your spiritual growth. You don’t have excuse why you should not be growing spiritually. If you are not growing, it is your fault. You can never take advantage of the full package of salvation, until you grow spiritually. If you are not growing spiritually, you are dying gradually.

“Now I say that the heir, as long as he is a child, does not differ at all from a slave, though he is master of all, but is under guardians and stewards until the time appointed by the father. Even so we, when we were children, were in bondage under the elements of the world”. Galatians 4:1-3.

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