Elements City Church
Sermon on the Mount - Week 5 - Love Your Enemy
The Sermon on the Mount is the most famous sermon Jesus ever preached. It derives its name from the place where Jesus preached it; a mountainside that acted as a natural amphitheater along the shores of Galilee. The Sermon on the Mount, preached to ordinary people, covers a wide range of topics like prayer, fasting, money, worry, forgiveness, anger, lust, judging others, and more. But the theme that unites it all is Jesus explaining the heart of God behind His given Law. It is one of the most challenging biblical texts to interpret properly because the Sermon goes far deeper than promoting external obedience to God’s moral imperatives or simple behavior modification. Every line of the Sermon goes to the heart of discipleship. The Sermon offers a clear understanding of what a blessed life that is pleasing to God looks like from the inside out. What Jesus taught often runs counter to mainstream thinking, but every lesson is brimming with heavenly wisdom and practical instruction that leads us into a flourishing life.
Locations & Times
  • Elements City Church
    1825 N Alvernon Way, Tucson, AZ 85712, USA
    星期日 5:00 下午

Thanks for joining us!

Whether you're on-site or online, we are praying that tonight will be an encouragement to your soul. May God whisper to you and help you in taking your next steps in a journey with Him. If you're new, we'd love to have you fill out our connection card.

It's here in the Sermon on the Mount -- found in Matthew 5-7 -- that King Jesus gives us a radical picture of what life in His Kingdom looks like. And it’s our hope that, as we meditate on Jesus’s words, we might become people who more closely follow His Way and experience a life that truly flourishes in the process.
The Sermon so far:
Beatitudes (Matt 5:1-12)
Salt and Light (vs. 13-16)
How to Have Kingdom Righteousness (vs. 17-48)

Key Themes in the Sermon:
1. Makarios and Human Flourishing
2. Teleios and Wholeness
What do you think of when it comes to: ENEMIES?
-what kind of enemy is Jesus talking about here?

-the word Jesus uses is ekthros and its found throughout the Bible.
Most frequently when it is used, it is referring to an impersonal, national, or civic enemy—the opposing nation or political party, (occupying Rome, in 1st century for example.)
It is also frequently used for the personal enemy, the person out to get us at every turn. Given its frequent use both ways — Jesus is incorporating both concepts of “enemy” when he tells us to love them. It is both the national enemy and civic enemy, the people that you consider out of their minds for some of their beliefs and ideologies, as well as the person who is out to get you…

==Our enemy is anyone whom we don’t really want to love.
Truth is: Jesus is calling us to a disproportionate response towards our enemies. —but instead of more violence and destruction. Jesus calls us not to reciprocate in kind, but to respond with generosity & kindness….this IS disproportionate from our emotions. Not an emotionally driven response - but a response of guided and grounded spiritual maturity

Jesus calls us to love our enemies.

We live in a world that calls us to demonize our enemies.
Jesus calls us to lovingly look in the eyes of our enemy.
A Caveat: this doesn’t mean turning a blind eye to injustices, harm and evil. This is not saying we can’t have appropriate boundaries for protection or to see justice done on behalf of those being hurt or taken advantaged of… this is not a call to stay in abusive situations, nor to overlook wrongs and not stand up for peace, health and protection…

But this challenge/command from Jesus does call for us to move out of the natural orbit and gravitational pull of The Law of RECIPROCITY
==to move beyond a natural emotional response - to a spiritual mature response.

law of reciprocity
This is basically the idea that when someone does something good for us, we have a deep-rooted desire to return the favor…
“You scratch my back and I scratch yours.”

This law of reciprocity makes HUMAN sense!

It’s natural to love those who love us & be good to those good to us.
Jesus upends the law of reciprocity here and says that, while there is nothing wrong with loving those who love us, citizens of his kingdom will take the extra step to love generously and kindly without reciprocity.
Love IS the great message and vision of Christianity.
Christians are to be known by their L O V E (see John 13:34-35)
*Jesus would give a new commandment: all will know you’re my followers, by your love for one another…

You and I who are rescued and called into God’s kingdom are challenged to love without strings attached.
Luke 6:27-29
Love for Enemies
27 “But to you who are willing to listen, I say, love your enemies! Do good to those who hate you. 28 Bless those who curse you. Pray for those who hurt you.

Do Good
Do all the good you can,
By all the means you can,
In all the ways you can,
In all the places you can,
At all the times you can,
To all the people you can,
As long as ever you can.
— John Wesley

When you love your enemy - you resemble your Heavenly Father and will be rewarded by God… God loves catches us doing things rightly; just like him.

Jesus didn’t just tell us to do this…. He modeled it!

*there is this embedded code in Matthew 5, Ephesians 1, 1 Peter 1 and
1 John 4 — a spiritual parental pattern common to early Christian moral teachings: “As God’s children, imitate him in his love.”

Thanks for partnering with us!

Thank you for enabling us to be the Church in our city! Your gifts help fuel the mission of Elements City Church, as well as our capacity to share His love with as many as we can. You help us bring the HOPE and LIGHT of Jesus to our city! You can give online at the link below or through the Elements app.

Whether you joined us on-site or online, thanks for being with us tonight!
May you have a blessed week ahead friends.

Join us next week as we continue our series in the Sermon on the Mount. (read Matthew chapters 5-7)

Check out the Elements app for upcoming events! We look forward to gathering again next weekend.