There was a preacher giving a sermon on loving your enemies. He said, "We all have enemies. If there is anyone in this room that has no enemies, please raise your hand." An old man in the front row was the only one that did so. The preacher asked him, "How old are you sir?" The man replied "94". The preacher said, "You have lived 94 years and you have managed to have no enemies? How is that so?" The old man replied, "It was easy. I outlived the scoundrels!"
We have all had enemies in our lives at one time or another. What comes to mind when the word enemy is used? The first thing that should pop into our minds is satan. He is our adversary. We find in Matthew 13 in the parable of the sower that satan is the enemy of all mankind. He is the enemy of God and all that is righteous. Yet, for today's study, I want to take a look at other enemies of God within the scriptures. Let's start by asking the obvious question: Does God really have enemies other than satan?
Let's begin today by going to:
Psalms 37:18-20 18. The Lord knoweth the days of the upright: and their inheritance shall be for ever. 19. They shall not be ashamed in the evil time: and in the days of famine they shall be satisfied. 20. But the wicked shall perish, and the enemies of the Lord shall be as the fat of lambs: they shall consume; into smoke shall they consume away.
This says God will take care of the upright, but the enemies of the Lord will be consumed. The first thing we notice is that it is better to be in the category of the upright rather than God's enemy. At this point, we should all be thinking, "What would make me an enemy of God?"
What does the word enemy mean? According to Webster's dictionary, enemy means one that hates another; a foe; one who shows hostility or ill will; an antagonist that shows itself in hatred or destructive attitude or action.
Certainly satan fits all of these attributes. There are many people who do as well. According to this definition, and it goes along well with Strong's Biblical definitions, anyone who opposes God's way, is an enemy of God. Anyone who shows hostility towards the truth or opposes truth in any way is an enemy of God.
Let's see an example of this with those who oppose God's people.
1 Samuel 30:1 1. And it came to pass, when David and his men were come to Ziklag on the third day, that the Amalekites had invaded the south, and Ziklag, and smitten Ziklag, and burned it with fire;
2. And had taken the women captives, that were therein: they slew not any, either great or small, but carried them away, and went on their way.
3. So David and his men came to the city, and, behold, it was burned with fire; and their wives, and their sons, and their daughters, were taken captives.
4. Then David and the people that were with him lifted up their voice and wept, until they had no more power to weep. Drop down to verse 9: 9. So David went, he and the six hundred men that were with him, and came to the brook Besor, where those that were left behind stayed.
10. But David pursued, he and four hundred men: for two hundred abode behind, which were so faint that they could not go over the brook Besor.
11. And they found an Egyptian in the field, and brought him to David, and gave him bread, and he did eat; and they made him drink water;
12. And they gave him a piece of a cake of figs, and two clusters of raisins: and when he had eaten, his spirit came again to him: for he had eaten no bread, nor drunk any water, three days and three nights.
13. And David said unto him, To whom belongest thou? and whence art thou? And he said, I am a young man of Egypt, servant to an Amalekite; and my master left me, because three days agone I fell sick.
14. We made an invasion upon the south of the Cherethites, and upon the coast which belongeth to Judah, and upon the south of Caleb; and we burned Ziklag with fire.
15. And David said to him, Canst thou bring me down to this company? And he said, Swear unto me by God, that thou wilt neither kill me, nor deliver me into the hands of my master, and I will bring thee down to this company. 16. And when he had brought him down, behold, they were spread abroad upon all the earth, eating and drinking, and dancing, because of all the great spoil that they had taken out of the land of the Philistines, and out of the land of Judah.
17. And David smote them from the twilight even unto the evening of the next day: and there escaped not a man of them, save four hundred young men, which rode upon camels, and fled.
18. And David recovered all that the Amalekites had carried away: and David rescued his two wives.
19. And there was nothing lacking to them, neither small nor great, neither sons nor daughters, neither spoil, nor any thing that they had taken to them: David recovered all.
Now look at verse 26:
And when David came to Ziklag, he sent of the spoil unto the elders of Judah, even to his friends, saying, Behold a present for you of the spoil of the enemies of the Lord;
Who was David speaking of here? Of course he was talking about the Amalekites. I remember back when I was growing up, I was a big Dallas Cowboys fan. At the time their rivals were the Pittsburgh Steelers. I didn't like the Steelers and didn't like anybody who did! That's the way the Amalekites felt about the children of Israel. They didn't like the Israelites and didn't like anybody who did! The Amalekites were descended from the line of Esau. Remember Esau was bitter against God for what happened with his birthright. Hate can be passed down from family to family. You've all no doubt heard of the Hatfields and the McCoys. It is said that later generations didn't even remember what the original problem was between the families, but the hatred had been passed down through the generations. So it was with the Amalekites. They were bitter enemies of Israel and constantly opposed God's people.
We can easily see that the Amalekites historical records show this.
-Defeated by Joshua, (Exo.17:8,13.)
-Defeated by Gideon, (Judg.7.)
-Defeated by Saul, (1Sam.14:47-48; 1Sam.15:1-33.)
-Defeated by David, (1Sam.27:8-9; 1Sam.30:1-20.)
-Defeated by the Simeonites, (1Chr.4:42-43.)
-Defeat the Israelites, (Num.14:45; Judg.3:13.) In both cases the Israelites had turned away from God!
-Israel commanded to destroy, (Deut.25:17-19; 1Sam.28:18.)
-Prophecies against, (Exo.17:14,16; Num.24:20.] )
In Exodus 17:16 scripture says, "Because the Lord hath sworn that the Lord will have war with Amalek from generation to generation."
That is why David called the Amalekites the enemies of the Lord. They opposed God and His people time after time after time.
You might ask, how could this be? How can God consider anyone an enemy. Doesn't God love everybody no matter what they do?
Psalm 11:5 5. The Lord trieth the righteous: but the wicked and him that loveth violence His soul hateth.
Whoa! Now that is a foreign concept to people. Does the scripture really say that? Yes, it does. Need a 2nd witness to this? OK! I can do that.
Proverbs 6:16-19 16. These six things doth the Lord hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto him:
17. A proud look, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood,
18. An heart that deviseth wicked imaginations, feet that be swift in running to mischief,
19. A false witness that speaketh lies, and he that soweth discord among brethren. Notice the first 5 are attributes of the people, but the last 2 are the people themselves!
Does modern so-called christianity believe this is possible? No. The world does not know God. Go do an experiment. Ask the 1st 100 people you can find if God loves everybody and you will almost certainly find that all 100 people believe that God loves you no matter how you live.
2 Corinthians 11:4 speaks of another jesus and another gospel other than what is true. This is what modern so-called christianity has today. A false jesus and a false gospel! Catholics have another jesus. Baptists have another jesus. Pentecostals have another jesus. There are even those within our church that teach another jesus. Anyone who does not have the truth has another jesus. These other religions are not seeking the truth. Some of the individuals might be. If you want to be in the 1st resurrection you absolutely must be seeking the truth and living by it!
Come read with me something that is very powerful! James 4:1-4 1. From whence come wars and fightings among you? come they not hence, even of your lusts that war in your members?
2. Ye lust, and have not: ye kill, and desire to have, and cannot obtain: ye fight and war, yet ye have not, because ye ask not.
3. Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts.
4. Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God.
If you are a friend of this world, if you love this system, this society, you are an enemy of God.
I have heard many people justify their worldly influences by saying that it isn't all bad.
Ku Klux Klan - do they not do good things?- I saw them on the side of the road the other day picking up litter - Since they are doing something good I guess I can go get a sheet and pretend to be a cowardly bigot just for a little while. I would be helping them pick up litter.
NO! They stand for things my God is against. Why would I keep company with them? We are known by the company we keep.
Anyone who believes in things like the Trinity, Christmas, Sunday worship, etc… are deceived and God is against these things. Since God is against these things, we should be as well.
2 Corinthians 6:14-15 14. Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness?
15. And what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel?
God's people are set apart. If you are involved with this worldly system, you are not apart from it!
2 Corinthians 6:14-15 (Living Bible) 14. Don't be teamed with those who do not love the Lord, for what do the people of God have in common with the people of sin? How can light live with darkness?
15. And what harmony can there be between Christ and the devil? How can a Christian be a partner with one who doesn't believe?
Any person who stands against the truth of God is the enemy of God!
Do these groups helping the hurricane victims believe the truth? No! Show them the truth of the trinity or christmas or whatever and if they oppose it, they are the enemies of God! Don't send your money to them. If you really want to help, pray for God's kingdom to come where there will be no more suffering and send your money to someone who is preaching the truth. That is the best way you can help. You follow God and let the dead bury the dead! The world that is spiritually dead can fix New Orleans. You preach the Gospel!
God said the Sabbath is a sign between He and His people. If they don't have sign of the Sabbath, they are Not God's people!
Also, just having that sign does not make you God's people. Some go to keep up appearances or because of tradition. What about the Jews - Are they spiritual brethren? 1 John 4:1-3 1. Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world.
2. Hereby know ye the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesseth that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is of God:
3. And every spirit that confesseth not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God: and this is that spirit of antichrist, whereof ye have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the world.
The Jews do not believe Christ has come in the flesh. That is the spirit of antichrist!
Could you be an enemy of Christ? Philippians 3:15-21 15. Let us therefore, as many as be perfect, be thus minded: and if in any thing ye be otherwise minded, God shall reveal even this unto you.
16. Nevertheless, whereto we have already attained, let us walk by the same rule, let us mind the same thing.
17. Brethren, be followers together of me, and mark them which walk so as ye have us for an ensample.
(For many walk, of whom I have told you often, and now tell you even weeping, that they are the enemies of the cross of Christ:
Verse 19 gives us 4 attributes of these enemies: 19. Whose end is destruction, whose God is their belly, and whose glory is in their shame, who mind earthly things.)
20. For our conversation is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ:
21. Who shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body, according to the working whereby he is able even to subdue all things unto himself.
How do you keep from becoming an enemy of God? Seek the truth daily! Make sure what you believe is the truth! Live it! Stand against ALL those who oppose it!
1 Thessalonians 5:22 says to Abstain from all appearance of evil. Why is this so important to anyone who represents God?
We know the story here in 2 Samuel 12. David had sinned by lusting for Bathsheba, by following through with that lust and committing adultery with a married woman, and by committing the pre-meditated murder of Uriah. What made all of this worse is that he tried to hide it. God did not let it stay hidden. Bathsheba became pregnant. You cannot hide your sin from God and David found this out. We'll pick this story up in verse 12 where God told Nathan to confront David. Nathan gave a summation of the sin and here tells David: 2 Samuel 12:12-14 12. For thou didst it secretly: but I will do this thing before all Israel, and before the sun. 13. And David said unto Nathan, I have sinned against the Lord. And Nathan said unto David, The Lord also hath put away thy sin; thou shalt not die. 14. Howbeit, because by this deed thou hast given great occasion to the enemies of the Lord to blaspheme, the child also that is born unto thee shall surely die.
There are a couple of things we must realize here. When confronted with the sin, David admitted it and we also know from reading this account that David repented. Because of this God inspired Nathan to tell David that his sin was put away. However, the consequence of the sin remained. When we sin, even when we repent and are forgiven, the consequences are not always removed. The child that was the fruit of the sin had to die. Another vital point that we must not overlook is that David was the King and the representative of God to this people. Those who represent God are held to a higher standard and are even more accountable because of this. All of the people who knew anything about their king knew David followed God and thus, represented God. Here, David made God look bad. Let's read verse 14 again:
14. Howbeit, becauseby this deed thou hast given great occasion to the enemies of the Lord to blaspheme, the child also that is born unto thee shall surely die.
Does God really feel His name is that important? Absolutely! Ezekiel 36:16-28 16. Moreover the word of the Lord came unto me, saying,
17. Son of man, when the house of Israel dwelt in their own land, they defiled it by their own way and by their doings: their way was before me as the uncleanness of a removed woman.
18. Wherefore I poured my fury upon them for the blood that they had shed upon the land, and for their idols wherewith they had polluted it:
19. And I scattered them among the heathen, and they were dispersed through the countries: according to their way and according to their doings I judged them.
20. And when they entered unto the heathen, whither they went, they profaned my holy name, when they said to them, These are the people of the Lord, and are gone forth out of his land.
21. But I had pity for mine holy name, which the house of Israel had profaned among the heathen, whither they went.
22. Therefore say unto the house of Israel, Thus saith the Lord God; I do not this for your sakes, O house of Israel, but for mine holy name's sake, which ye have profaned among the heathen, whither ye went.
23. And I will sanctify my great name, which was profaned among the heathen, which ye have profaned in the midst of them; and the heathen shall know that I am the Lord, saith the Lord God, when I shall be sanctified in you before their eyes. 24. For I will take you from among the heathen, and gather you out of all countries, and will bring you into your own land.
25. Then will I sprinkle clean water upon you, and ye shall be clean: from all your filthiness, and from all your idols, will I cleanse you.
26. A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh.
27. And I will put my spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes, and ye shall keep my judgments, and do them.
28. And ye shall dwell in the land that I gave to your fathers; and ye shall be My people, and I will be your God.
Romans 2 tells what the church as a whole is guilty of in this day and time. Romans 2:17-24 17. Behold, thou art called a Jew, and restest in the law, and makest thy boast of God,
18. And knowest his will, and approvest the things that are more excellent, being instructed out of the law;
19. And art confident that thou thyself art a guide of the blind, a light of them which are in darkness,
20. An instructor of the foolish, a teacher of babes, which hast the form of knowledge and of the truth in the law.
21. Thou therefore which teachest another, teachest thou not thyself? thou that preachest a man should not steal, dost thou steal?
22. Thou that sayest a man should not commit adultery, dost thou commit adultery? thou that abhorrest idols, dost thou commit sacrilege?
23. Thou that makest thy boast of the law, through breaking the law dishonourest thou God?
24. For the name of God is blasphemed among the Gentiles through you, as it is written.
Far too often, God is blasphemed because of our actions. What are YOU doing that is blaspheming God? What sin are YOU living with that is trashing God's name? I plead with you to stop whatever it is, because judgment IS coming!
We don't often want to think of it, but our sins could be turning others away from the truth and away from God. Acts 13:1-12 1. Now there were in the church that was at Antioch certain prophets and teachers; as Barnabas, and Simeon that was called Niger, and Lucius of Cyrene, and Manaen, which had been brought up with Herod the tetrarch, and Saul. 2. As they ministered to the Lord, and fasted, the Holy Ghost said, Separate me Barnabas and Saul for the work whereunto I have called them.
3. And when they had fasted and prayed, and laid their hands on them, they sent them away. 4. So they, being sent forth by the Holy Ghost, departed unto Seleucia; and from thence they sailed to Cyprus.
5. And when they were at Salamis, they preached the word of God in the synagogues of the Jews: and they had also John to their minister.
6. And when they had gone through the isle unto Paphos, they found a certain sorcerer, a false prophet, a Jew, whose name was Barjesus:
7. Which was with the deputy of the country, Sergius Paulus, a prudent man; who called for Barnabas and Saul, and desired to hear the word of God. 8. But Elymas the sorcerer (for so is his name by interpretation) withstood them, seeking to turn away the deputy from the faith.
9. Then Saul, (who also is called Paul,) filled with the Holy Spirit, set his eyes on him, 10. And said, O full of all subtilty and all mischief, thou child of the devil, thou enemy of all righteousness, wilt thou not cease to pervert the right ways of the Lord? 11. And now, behold, the hand of the Lord is upon thee, and thou shalt be blind, not seeing the sun for a season. And immediately there fell on him a mist and a darkness; and he went about seeking some to lead him by the hand. 12. Then the deputy, when he saw what was done, believed, being astonished at the doctrine of the Lord.
Elymas the sorcerer was seeking to turn this man away from the faith. In this case, God did not allow it to continue. God not only blinded the enemy of the truth, He used it to show the deputy His power. Yet again, God overcame His enemy. There is coming a time when He will overcome all enemies! The burning question is: Will God have to overcome you?
I also want you to see that not all sin makes you an enemy of God. 2 Thessalonians 3:6-15 6. Now we command you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye withdraw yourselves from every brother that walketh disorderly, and not after the tradition which he received of us.
7. For yourselves know how ye ought to follow us: for we behaved not ourselves disorderly among you;
8. Neither did we eat any man's bread for nought; but wrought with labour and travail night and day, that we might not be chargeable to any of you:
9. Not because we have not power, but to make ourselves an ensample unto you to follow us.
10. For even when we were with you, this we commanded you, that if any would not work, neither should eat.
11. For we hear that there are some which walk among you disorderly, working not at all, but are busybodies.
12. Now them that are such we command and exhort by our Lord Jesus Christ, that with quietness they work, and eat their own bread.
13. But ye, brethren, be not weary in well doing.
14. And if any man obey not our word by this epistle, note that man, and have no company with him, that he may be ashamed.
15. Yet count him not as an enemy, but admonish him as a brother.
Being a lazy busybody does not make you an enemy of God. It does make you a sinner and you are told to repent of it. Those in the body of Christ are to have no company with this type of person, yet count them not as an enemy. Rather, admonish him or her to repent and be restored to God.
Why is he or she not an enemy? Because he or she is not standing against the truth.
In Conclusion: Not all sin makes you an enemy of God. Some sins do. If your sin causes someone to stumble, or to turn away from the truth, you are an enemy of God! If you are standing against or opposing the truth in any way, you are an enemy of God! We have a job to do and it isn't to clean up New Orleans. Our job is to preach the gospel and to support those who do. Let the dead bury their dead. Always remember, wemust be about our Father's business.