“You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I tell you: Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you…”
“While they were stoning him, Stephen prayed, ‘Lord Jesus, receive my spirit.’ Then he fell on his knees and cried out, ‘Lord, do not hold this sin against them.’ When he had said this, he fell asleep. And Saul was there, giving approval to his death.”
1 Timothy 1:16-17
“But for that very reason I [Paul] was shown mercy so that in me, the worst of sinners, Christ Jesus might display his unlimited patience as an example for those who would believe on him and receive eternal life. Now to the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only God, be honor and glory for ever and ever. Amen.”
Eternal God, you love without end and Christ patiently intercedes even for your enemies.
Countless times we have persecuted you, appointing ourselves as master and judge. We hurl stones of rejection when we are confronted by the truth of the only King.
Forgive us, and by your Spirit help us forgive those who oppose us. As in death Stephen prayed for the oppresser who would become an apostle, take our small martyrdoms and advance your kingdom.
For the sake of Christ, the best of men, we come as the worst of sinners and receive the prayer of forgiveness from his dying lips.
Listen to ‘Jesus I My Cross Have Taken‘ by Dave Hunt