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Love Your Enemies - Luke 6:27-36
Written by John Tsang   
Monday, 25 April 2016 13:50

 

To wrap up our study of the Gospel of Luke, this past Sunday, we had the opportunity to reflect on what Dr. Greenman called, “Jesus’ hardest command”, namely, love your enemies. It is one of the most difficult ethical teachings but Jesus’ life exemplified this very principle of loving one's enemies. It is important to note at the outset that the context of loving your enemies come from Luke 6:22,

Blessed are you when people hate you, when they exclude you

and insult you and reject your name as evil, because of the Son of Man.

In other words, the enemies or adversaries that we encounter are because of our allegiance to Jesus and not because we are rude, abrasive, or not a very nice person to be around.

 

This command is hard because we are not to just tolerate or put up with those who are our adversaries but we are to love them and do something good towards them. We are also called to bless them and this has to do with our speech. The implication is that we do not curse with our words but instead, we respectfully and calmly respond to those who curse and speak harshly towards us. Another reason why we are to love our enemies is because it is the only way that breaks the endless downward spiral of evil and violence. Martin Luther King Jr., said: "Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that." When we love our enemies, we break the cycle of darkness and hatred. Finally, this is not simply a motivational catchphrase to make us try harder but we are to do this with prayer, inviting God and the Spirit to give us the grace to love our enemies.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 26 April 2016 17:01
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When Your Saviour and Spiritual Friend Leaves - Luke 24:36-53
Written by John Tsang   
Monday, 18 April 2016 19:23

 

We have reached the conclusion of our journey through Luke and in this last portion of the Gospel, we see Jesus' post-resurrection appearance to the disciples, Luke's version of the Great Commission, and the ascension.

 

In the appearance to the eleven (Luke 24:36-43), we see that Jesus' resurrected body had the ability to appear suddenly but it also retained some of the properties of a physical body. Both Luke and Paul was emphatic that the resurrection was a physical resurrection and not just some sort of a spiritual vision of Jesus. The disciples were invited to touch the hands and feet of Jesus, the Lord affirmed that he had flesh and bones (v39), and he ate something in their presence (v42). For those who are curious about what our resurrected bodies will be like, the resurrected Christ gives us a hint of what we can expect. Paul said that Christ is the 'firstborn' from among the dead (Col 1:18) and so one day, those who accept the gift of salvation, will also experience a bodily resurrection.

 

Last Updated on Tuesday, 19 April 2016 17:19
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When Your Neighbour Becomes Your Spiritual Friend – Luke 24:13-35
Written by John Tsang   
Monday, 11 April 2016 21:51

 

One of the greatest blessings and gifts from God is a spiritual friend. Although we might have many ‘friends’ who are Christian through church or small groups, not all friends who are Christians are “spiritual friends”.

 

Luke recorded the story of two disciples, Cleopas (and the other one unnamed), who were on a journey from Jerusalem to Emmaus. As they were thinking, discussing Scripture, reflecting on the meaning of the empty tomb, the resurrected Jesus mysteriously appeared to them as a stranger. Jesus continued to journey with them and when they arrived at Emmaus, the two urged Jesus to stay with them. And then,

30 When he (Jesus) was at the table with them, he took bread, gave thanks, broke it and began to give it to them. 31 Then their eyes were opened and they recognized him, and he disappeared from their sight. 32 They asked each other, “Were not our hearts burning within us while he talked with us on the road and opened the Scriptures to us?” (Luke 24:30-32)

This endearing story has always been seen as a metaphor for our spiritual journey. We also journey through life and when we do so with other spiritual companions, we can help one another recognize Christ in the ordinary moments and events of our lives.

 

Last Updated on Monday, 11 April 2016 22:03
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