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“But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God— having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with such people.”
Be very, very, very careful how you apply this scripture.
Jesus was kind to the unkind and even to the condemned.
Think of how kind he was to Judas Iscariot, even knowing all along that Judas would betray him and was therefore condemned for all eternity.
And think that he let Judas kiss him, even knowing that the kiss was a signal to arrest him.
Most people are messed up these days, and we know from scripture that most are condemned, having chosen the broad way. But we, as born-again believers, are still to love these people and be kind to them. Jesus’ directive to love and bless our enemies and to pray for them has the same weight as a Commandment, meaning that it’s non-negotiable.
Non-negotiable means there are no exceptions and no exemptions. It has to be done.
Let me be brutally frank: being unkind to people solely because they are unkind to you or are your spiritual enemy is a sin. Violating any of the Commandments is a sin, and being kind to the unkind has the same weight as a Commandment. If you purposely and persistently sin and refuse to repent, you will lose your grace and join those on the broad way.
Don’t do that.
You can love your enemies and be kind to them from a distance. You can keep your distance from them, if that’s what you prefer and if that’s how God guides you. But you still need be kind to them according to Jesus’ directive, which he told us outright was another Commandment.
Your kindness may help diffuse a situation they’re going through. Your kindness may be the only kindness they’ve been shown in a long time. Your kindness may even inspire them to be kind to someone else.
Ultimately, your kindness may keep them from a worse eternal condemnation. This is the purpose of being kind to the unkind, of loving your enemies.
The spiritual directive to be kind in the face of unkindness is the highest calling of a born-again believer. It is ultimately what will separate the wheat from the chaff, the sheep from the goats.
When your enemy hungers, feed him.
When he thirsts, give him something to drink.
When he is naked, clothe him.
When he curses you, bless him.
You know the drill.
Being kind to the unkind is a non-negotiable Commandment and probably the most difficult of all to keep.
But keep it you must.
As with everything, ask God for help with this.
You cannot be kind to the unkind on your own steam.
Ask God for help.
And if you mess up, don’t beat yourself up about it. Make your amends, and do better next time.