Monday, August 02, 2010

Prayer Against Our Enemies

I have long been confused about how "praying against our enemies" fits with loving our enemies and forgiving those who spitefully use us. The psalms are full of prayers against our enemies, calling down God's wrath. While David, king-to-be, is hiding in the desert from King Saul, David prays that God would destroy his enemies. And yet, David has compassion on Saul, and refuses to lift his hand against God's anointed king even when he twice has the opportunity to reach out and easily kill Saul.

Finally, Pastor gave me the missing piece of the puzzle: "We do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of darkness in this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places" (Ephesians 6). Oh, so it's the demons and the anti-God forces we pray against. Oh. Of course. It is okay to love those who are filled with hatred and destruction; it is okay to pray for them; they are souls for whom Jesus died. (This may sound like a no-brainer to you, and I suppose it was for me too. But when people tell you to hate God's enemies and pray against them, and use Bible passages as back-up, I was unable to respond coherently. It was nice for Pastor to clarify how it all fits together.)

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