Friday, October 30th, 2009
"Keep on blessing those who persecute." (Romans 12:14)
How do we carry out Paul’s exhortation as stated in today’s text? Jesus told his followers: “Continue to love your enemies and to pray for those persecuting you.” (Matthew 5:44; Luke 6:27, 28) Hence, one way in which we bless persecutors is by praying for them, petitioning God that if any are opposing us because of ignorance, Jehovah may open their eyes to the truth. (2 Corinthians 4:4) Granted, it may seem strange to ask God to bless a persecutor. However, the more our mind-set resembles Christ’s way of thinking, the more we will be able to extend love to our enemies. (Luke 23:34) Stephen was one who prayed for his persecutors, and his prayer was not in vain. Not long after Pentecost 33 C.E., Stephen was arrested by opposers of the Christian congregation, dragged outside Jerusalem, and stoned. Before he died, he cried out: “Jehovah, do not charge this sin against them.”—Acts 7:58–8:1.
(Watchtower issue: 07/1/07, 1:10, 11)