“But I say to you, love your enemies,
and pray for those who persecute you,
that you may be children of your heavenly Father”
If a person follows the rule”You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy” on one occasion they are turned towards good, and the other you face towards evil. The problem though becomes that even though you are turned towards evil, that evil is not defeated. It is accepted. In a sense it hating an enemy is giving into temptation, and in giving into temptation it is letting the devil win.In refusing to submit to that devil where does one turn but to God? In loving an enemy it is not accepting their betrayal, it is refusing to grant that betrayal victory. It is gaining victory over something that both keeps you and your neighbor from God. Loving of an enemy is a prescription to restore life from a death that comes from hatred. It is destroying a disease so that a patient might live. When Jesus argues with the leaders of the day, was it out of hatred or was it to guide them back towards the Father? That devil which tempted Jesus in the desert was defeated in the desert, it gained no ground throughout Jesus ministry. “Forgive them Father for they know not what they do.”Those are the words from the cross, a prayer for those who persecuted him and a prayer out of love.