Sunday 20 February 2022 – LOVING THE ENEMY

7th Sunday in Ordinary Time

1st Reading: 1 Samuel 26:2, 7–9, 12–13, 22–23

In those days, Saul went down to the desert of Ziph with three thousand picked men of Israel, to search for David in the desert of Ziph. So, David and Abishai went among Saul’s soldiers by night and found Saul lying asleep within the barricade, with his spear thrust into the ground at his head and Abner and his men sleeping around him. Abishai whispered to David: “God has delivered your enemy into your grasp this day. Let me nail him to the ground with one thrust of the spear; I will not need a second thrust!” But David said to Abishai, “Do not harm him, for who can lay hands on the Lord’s anointed and remain unpunished?” So, David took the spear and the water jug from their place at Saul’s head, and they got away without anyone’s seeing or knowing or awakening. All remained asleep, because the Lord had put them into a deep slumber. Going across to an opposite slope, David stood on a remote hilltop at a great distance from Abner, son of Ner, and the troops. He said: “Here is the king’s spear. Let an attendant come over to get it. The Lord will reward each man for his justice and faithfulness. Today, though the Lord delivered you into my grasp, I would not harm the Lord’s anointed.”

2nd Reading: 1 Corinthians 15:45–49

Brothers and sisters: It is written, The first man, Adam, became a living being, the last Adam a life-giving spirit. But the spiritual was not first; rather the natural and then the spiritual. The first man was from the earth, earthly; the second man, from heaven. As was the earthly one, so also are the earthly, and as is the heavenly one, so also are the heavenly. Just as we have borne the image of the earthly one, we shall also bear the image of the heavenly one.

Gospel: Luke 6:27–38

Jesus said to his disciples: “To you who hear I say, love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you. To the person who strikes you on one cheek, offer the other one as well, and from the person who takes your cloak, do not withhold even your tunic. Give to everyone who asks of you, and from the one who takes what is yours do not demand it back. Do to others as you would have them do to you. For if you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners love those who love them. And if you do good to those who do good to you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners do the same. If you lend money to those from whom you expect repayment, what credit is that to you? Even sinners lend to sinners, and get back the same amount. But rather, love your enemies and do good to them, and lend expecting nothing back; then your reward will be great and you will be children of the Most High, for he himself is kind to the ungrateful and the wicked. Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful. “Stop judging and you will not be judged. Stop condemning and you will not be condemned. Forgive and you will be forgiven. Give and gifts will be given to you; a good measure, packed together, shaken down, and ­overflowing, will be poured into your lap. For the measure with which you measure will in return be measured out to you.”

LOVING THE ENEMY: True love of the enemy means that we do not feel good when we see our enemy suffering or perishing. It also implies that we do not want something bad to happen to our enemies. True love means that we are ready to spare the life of our enemies (1 Sam 26:8-9). It makes a person to acknowledge that human life comes from God and it is only God himself who can take it back to himself. Loving the enemy means that we are ready to do to the enemies what we would like others to do to us. If we like to be blessed, then we should be ready to bless our enemies. For married people, loving the enemy, among other things means that if one does not like another person to fool around with one’s partner, then one should not fool around with other people’s partners. Fooling around with one’s partner makes one an enemy of the person whose partner one is fooling around with. We should do for an enemy what we would like them to do for us. In other words, spare the dignity of the other person as you would like him to spare yours. Protect him/her from the evil actions. Be careful not to harm others. Be considerate just as God our Father is considerate and God will reward you.

Prayer: Help your people Lord to have the courage to show true love to their enemies.


BE MERCIFUL AS YOUR FATHER IN HEAVEN IS MERCIFUL: Human beings have a tendency of paying back evil by evil. This takes people away from God because it is not an act of love. If God was to pay back to human beings for the evil, they have done against Him, who will stand? God always spares human life and God forgives. This is because our God is a merciful Father. For human beings to be like their heavenly Father, they too must forgive their enemies. They should imitate God’s merciful ways. They should not destroy the life of other human beings. They must try to behave like their heavenly Father who is compassionate and ever forgiving. A person, who is not ready to forgive, cannot expect himself asking forgiveness from God. If we truly want to receive God’s forgiveness and mercy, we must be ready to forgive others.