Read: Luke 6:27-36

In the previous two posts I have been telling you that the resurrection of Jesus has changed EVERYTHING. It changes the way we live and the way we think. In addition, faith in Christ and His resurrection actually changes WHERE we live! The Apostle Paul tells us that God has “rescued us from the domain of darkness and transferred us into the kingdom of the Son He loves (COL 1:13 CSB).” We are no longer citizens of Satan’s kingdom. We are (by faith in Christ) full-fledged citizens of the Kingdom of God. His resurrection has changed…EVERYTHING!

This leads me to ask, “How should your new citizenship impact the way you do evangelism?”

Quite honestly I feel uncomfortable bringing up the subject, because I don’t feel I’m a very good evangelist. I stumble over what I should say and when I should say it. For these reasons and hundreds more I have purchased many books over the years that were designed to equip me to be a better evangelist. I have memorized catchy phrases and counter-arguments to what my pagan friends may raise by way of objection. I have used restaurant napkins and bracelets—all with the good intention of “sharing my faith.” After using all of these “tools,” I’m still not very good at telling others about why they need to know King Jesus.

So how should we live on this side of Easter? How should we live as citizens of the Kingdom of Jesus? Consider what the Savior Himself said in Luke 6:27-36. But be careful! If you thought verbal evangelism was hard, this text raises the bar even higher. Jesus teaches us that IF YOU WANT TO BE EFFECTIVE AT EVANGELISM, BE SURE TO LOVE YOUR ENEMIES. He goes so far as to say that if our enemies come to us, instead of hating them, we are to love them! We are to bless them instead of cursing them. We are to subject ourselves to physical affliction instead of defending ourselves against physical attack. We are to give them what they need from our possessions instead of holding on to what we think is ours (Luke 6:27-31). His list keeps growing in surprising ways.

Why would we do these things? Why would any rational Christian love an enemy? I see at least three reasons in our text. First, loving an enemy is an extremely effective evangelistic strategy. It gets attention. It has a long-lasting effect of causing people to ponder who we are and who is our Master. That’s what Jesus is implying in verses 32-34. Second, when we love our enemies, we are promised a great reward when the Kingdom of Jesus is manifested in its complete form (Luke 6:35). [This is what I referred to as the "great reversal" in my last post.] And third, when we love our enemies, we will be revealing the very character of God Himself, who loves our enemies more than they realize (Luke 6:35b-36).

My friend, Bruce Kokko, has written a wonderful book about the power of love when it is shared with others in the Name of Jesus. You can access his book at www.highroadkokko@blogspot.com. But don’t simply read about love. Put it into practice. After all, Jesus is alive, and our faith in the risen Savior makes us citizens of His Kingdom. And the most powerful, effective way of calling people out of enslavement to sin is by loving them as Jesus would love them. Yes…LOVE—sacrificial love—is the way to do evangelism in the Kingdom of Jesus. And if you say you are a Christ-follower, loving others is the most effective evangelistic strategy you will ever find.

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