Last night we hosted a gathering of about 30 of our friends from the Denver area. We wanted them to meet Safi and Eman, our dear friends from Lebanon who live and work in Saudi Arabia. They are Muslims who are following Jesus.
There were several poignant moments in the evening. With tear-filled eyes, Safi asked for forgiveness from us for the Muslims who perpetrated the 9/11 attacks and for Al Qaeda in general.
One of my local Denver businessman friends asked Safi why there are any terrorists at all who are Muslim? As the conversation started to turn toward politics, Safi kept asking that we stay focused on Jesus but my American businessman wanted to know why shouldn’t we (America) be free to attack the terrorists in Iraq and Afghanistan. And surely Jesus doesn’t want us to sit back and do nothing we should defend ourselves. Safi kept coming back to Jesus’ command to “Love (even) our enemies.” And Paul’s invocation to “do good to our enemies.”
I’ve asked this before but what do you think is the answer politically? Is there a viable way to “love our enemies” as a state? Can/should America (or any nation) try to “love” an enemy? And if so, how?
Most of us would agree that we, as followers of Jesus, try to love our enemies personally. But when the question turns political or inter-national, we’re not so sure. I’d love to hear your thoughts on this.