4 Things You Need to Know About Your Enemies

No matter who you are, everyone has people who come against them, create conflict or do things to set themselves up as enemies. We can all admit these kinds of conflicts arise in our life regularly, but we need to have the mind of God when it comes to how to deal with them.

Here are four biblical things you need to know about “your enemies.”

1. Your Enemies Are People Who Hate and Curse You

But I say to you who hear:Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you…(Luke 6:27–28)

Enemies will rise up and release hate, either through withdrawing love towards you or by intense animosity. They can even manifest a detest of you. I find this very common in the social media world. Without any intimate knowledge of who you are, rocks can begin flying immediately when the name of Jesus is attached to your beliefs.

Jesus told us, “Go ahead and love those people. The worse they get, the more gracious and loving you become.”

2. Your enemies will persecute you for following Christ.

Blessed are you when they revile and persecute you, and say all kinds of evil against you falsely for My sake. Rejoice and be exceedingly glad, for great is your reward in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you. (Matthew 5:11–12)

Modern Christianity can often make a mistake of trying to hard to get people to like us. We can work overtime in an unhealthy way to get approval or a likability.

Jesus told us to love. Loving someone is a whole lot different than trying to get someone to like you. One releases the power of God, the other depends on someone’s approval or affirmation for power.

[bctt tweet=”Loving someone is a whole lot different than trying to get someone to like you.”]

We have to understand that they hated Jesus, so therefore we will have hate released to us, no matter how kind we act. This gives no license to life as a victims; acting like everyone is against us. There is a real martyr, but many act like false-martyrs. “Woe is me. The world against me cause I’m a Christian.” Stop it.

Lets stop and think about this for a second. Many times we get upset at a world system that opposes us, when in reality, Jesus called it. He said this would happen, so don’t take it personal. They hated our Lord–they will hate you too. You don’t have to live as a victim about it. Just return good for evil. The haters don’t just hate you, they hate the One who lives inside you.

[bctt tweet=”The haters don’t just hate you, they hate the One who lives inside you.”]

Most Americans expecially are not prepared for hostility against their faith. We have lived in a country that honors the Word of God and Christian values. This is rapidly changing. So instead of picketing, debating politics and trying to argue with people of differing opinions, why don’t we rejoice when persecutiion comes, knowing that we get the chance to let the glory of God shine through us. Can we demonstrate His love and grace in that kind of opposition?

3. Your enemies will use you or exploit you selfishly.

Bless those who curse you, and pray for those who spitefully use you. (Luke 6:28)

This is not saying we should live every day as a doormat. I believe that Jesus is pointing to two things:

Number 1, I think humans hate being taken advantage of. We do everything we can to try and self protect, using our various relational walls–all to keep anyone from hurting us or taking advantage of us. Jesus is helping us to let that go. “So what if someone took advantage of you. Bless them, rather than try to get even.” Plus, you don’t need to carry that baggage.

[bctt tweet=”Why not bless that person who took advantage of you. You don’t need the baggage.”]

Secondly, Jesus is helping us to respond differently than we have been trained. Instead of using energy to get even with our enemies or litigate our way into recompense, why don’t we learn to pray for them? Could it be so many people are so drained, because they used so much energy fussing with enemies, when really they should use that energy to release them, bless them and pray for them?

[bctt tweet=”Instead of using energy to get even with our enemies why don’t we learn to pray for them?”]

4. Your “enemies” are not your enemy.

We wrestle not against flesh and blood… Ephesians 6:12

This last one may surprise you, because I spent all of this writing talking about human beings that come against you. Yet there will be little long term spiritual fruit if you don’t realize that no human being is ever your enemy. Is the Bible contradicting itself? No. God’s Word is teaching us how to deal with people who come against us, but Ephesians 6 is showing us how we should SEE any person that would set themselves up as an enemy.

Its not the person that is your enemy, it is satan’s kingdom operating through them that is your enemy.

[bctt tweet=”No person is every really your enemy.”]

When we see this picture, we can realize that most of the time, people are simply puppets on strings; listening to wicked thoughts from the enemy and then acting on them.

This is why Jesus said, “Father forgive them. They do not know what they are doing.” He was helping us to see that the thoughts those soldiers had were not their own, but from a demonic source. If they had known where those thoughts had come from, they probably would not have acted on them and crucified our Lord. Yet Jesus forgave them because He saw them with spiritual eyes.

[bctt tweet=”Jesus forgave because He saw people with spiritual eyes.”]

So how about you? When people come against you, do you see them with spiritual eyes or do you get lost in the physical, person to person battle that is being presented? Seeing with spiritual eyes shows that its just the enemy working through people when all this relational garbage arises. This gives us a position to have more graciousness towards the person and a greater perspective to release love towards them.

Get Two Free Chapters!

God loves me and i love myself book cover slant small

Join our mailing list and get a free download of the Introduction and Chapter 1 of God Loves Me and I Love Myself!

Powered by ConvertKit

Mark DeJesus has served as an experienced communicator since the 1990s. As a teacher, author, transformational consultant and radio host, Mark is deeply passionate about awakening hearts and equipping people towards personal transformation. He is gifted in helping people address the core issues that become limitations to their God given identity and destiny. He is the author of numerous books and hundreds of teachings. Mark and his wife host a weekly online show called Transformed You and he writes at markdejesus.com. His articles have been featured on sites like CharismaMag.com and Patheos.com. Mark and his wife Melissa enjoy each other and their precious children Maximus and Abigail.

Some of the links in the post above are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive, accusatory or off-topic.

  • Carol Rodd

    How we guard our hearts as others openly show hatred or seem to love us, This article gives me help with hatred but otherwise have trouble with others when openly or misleadingly seem to love us. Discerning others intentions can be a start but I’m not able to do that. How do we guard our hearts when others seemly love us?

    • Hi Carol! Great question. I think its something we should discuss on an upcoming episode. Good stuff!

  • Webbgurl2000

    Great article. I have a season where I am being really tested in this. I know satan is the true enemy. I’m just struggling with the pain of multiple betrayal in my marriage and two women in particular who profess Christ, but still knowingly helped my husband in his sexual addiction. He’s not innocent. But, many things have been breaking down in his life because he chose to break his vows for years. He’s only been faithful 3 years out of 28. 😓
    Our family is in ruins thanks to them.
    It’s hard enough to pray for strength for me and my kids.
    My prayers for them is that God touch their circumstances that they may see the harm they caused, and feel the pain they gave to us. Break their hearts and show them what He sees about what they have been doing that they may turn and repent.

    • My heart goes out to you. It challenges us to the core when betrayal happens this close to you. I am praying this morning that the God of peace would lead you beside the still waters and give you healing over these circumstances. I am sorry that men are not representing the Father to you, but I know our Father through Christ Jesus, is able to heal your heart and set you on a new foundation. I recommend my book, “Bitter Free!” and “Exposing the Rejection Mindset.” These two works will speak to the situations you mentioned. Blessings

  • JL3

    Mark, you said: Loving someone is a whole lot different than trying to get someone to like you. I could go on and on about that truth, but I won’t. Let’s just say that I finally understand why I am having so much enemy opposition in my life from people. As a person in general, I am more inclined to offer genuine love than striving to get people to like me, and I’ve been deeply misunderstood by many when I’ve spoken the truth. It seems to many people, that approving of them is the sign of real love, but giving love and truth without going overboard to be a people pleaser is not love to them. I’m just not a people pleaser, so I can’t do that. For example, if you tell a person, “Watch out! You are about to step in a ditch!”, but you didn’t compliment them on something you like about them before they step into that ditch, then you must not love them. Good Golly! If I have the courage to tell you that you are about to step into a ditch because I love you, but I didn’t compliment you on what a nice person you are before you step in that ditch, it doesn’t mean I don’t love you! Oh Lord have mercy on me! Lord help me to speak the truth in love, with wisdom and discernment! Lord give me grace! As for the article, I’ve experienced all of these things and it is par for the course to know these things and expect these things. Especially if you are going to be hot for Jesus and truth. I’m not backing down just because they real enemy, Satan, is always looking to operate through people who can and will hurt you. Forgive and move on and do everything you can to learn how to do this, forgive, and do it well. JL3