Pray for those who persecute you

There are a number of folks in our Church that move in the area of prophetic visions, dreams and the suchlike. As such, I thought I might share with you one of those dreams. The preface is from 2 Peter 2, the text for our current sermon series, which formed the backdrop to the dream.

2 Peter 2 (English Standard Version)
12 But these, like irrational animals, creatures of instinct, born to be caught and destroyed, blaspheming about matters of which they are ignorant, will also be destroyed in their destruction, 13 suffering wrong as the wage for their wrongdoing.

I was riding a horse on a high plain, and as I looked down away off in the far distance there were small fires burning brightly. An small animal acting rabied or possessed was leaping at the flames, it seemed like he was trying to put them out, one by one.

When he appeared to be having trouble putting them out, he moved on up the hill rapidly. The horse I was on was afraid as the animal came up the hill, I thought if we were quiet he would not bother us, so I steered the horse gently, hoping not to attract the animals attention. I saw a place to take cover and we moved into it, he could not have seen us, but it was like he could smell us and was close and raring to attack. As I peeked out of where we were taking cover, there was a huge animal, seemingly gentle and lay asleep. I had not seen the large sleeping animal lying there when we went in!

The large animal seemed like it had already been badly hurt, but his face and body had clean white bandages. The large animal arose , and we were safe.

I then was moved into a different place safely. And now for some reason I was preparing to lead the prayers. The names that I started to pray for were John Spong and Michael Ingham, and the words of the prayer that came forth were those words we prayed the other day at prayer time: BCP page 39 For the Universal Church. (It was amazing, because in daylight, I could have not repeated that prayer as I do not know it that well!)

This was my perception: The fires are lit by God, and the devil / principalities / powers are seeking to put them out (compare with the vision for the lighthouse, again light in a dark place, guiding beacon is a theme). Failing to do so, he will seek to attack the brethren; the place of safety to be found will be guarded by Him whose wounds have healed us.

Then we see from a different perspective that we are called to pray for our enemies, for those who would seek to persecute us, for that is our Fathers will.

What do you think? I’d be interested to know……

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10 Responses to Pray for those who persecute you

  1. Pauline Bettney says:

    Hi Peter – I am up early ready to go and help at the Church yard sale. I believe your interpretation is accurate and I have been praying for Bishop Ingham, but for his destruction, which would bring him to repentance. Somedays, I must admit I am not so kind but I know the Lord does not want anyone to perish. We have been praying Prayers for the Church, 1 and 2, in Church and in our prayer times and I think they are pretty wonderful. Direct and compassionate.

    As for a safe place, people seem to be looking to Canterbury, but I don’t think this is the safe place. The Lord seems to be guiding us to the Global South, etc; take note of the Common Cause Meeting and CANA. His centre for the Anglican Communion is moving but it will happen in a quiet way, gradually and over time, not with huge fanfare.

  2. faithwalk says:

    I agree with your interpretation Peter,I have seen the fires many times and know they represent that which is lit in the hearts of men by God in this day. The enemy is relentless in trying to extinguish and abort that which the Lord is bringing forth.
    Church systems will fall, it’s our personal walk and faith in Jesus Christ alone that will stand in the final hour.
    Believers will need each other as things accelerate and we need to be aware of the connections the Lord is making and the visions set before us.
    Are you feeling any closer to moving forward with what God has placed on your heart? I’d love to hear what’s going on ( hint, hint )…

    Blessings to you, clarity and peace in the decisions beforee you and those soon to come. He is Faithful and True!

  3. Peter says:

    Hi Pauline, Thanks for your comments. I do beleive there is only one safe place, and that will be Christ alone. That’s kind of pat to say really, but it’s truth. And, inasmuch as the Gloabal South abide in Him, they will be a good resting place!

    Hello Susan – we sent a long long long email (well, long for us), so see what you make of that. I would certainly value your input!

    Blessings,

    Peter

  4. Pauline Bettney says:

    Peter – Agreed. In Christ alone. Pauline

  5. white rabbit says:

    I can certainly sympathise with the small animal leaping at the flames as I often feel that way rounding up my cats at night – just one to go this night! Regarding your essay, Billington’s Fire in the Minds of Men came to mind but I am not certain if we should pray for those guys. I myself have no enemies that I know of (discounting the supervisors and managers at work) and I have no qualms about praying for those unreasonable people that don’t see things my way but as Jesus didn’t pray for his enemies I am not sure if i should pray for the enemies of the church. I don’t consider Bishop Ingham an enemy of the church. He takes the service at my wee church on occasion and for a Yorkshire man he is quite articulate – eh, by gum. True, he has a bee in his bonnet about a certain subject but apart from the West End crowd that supports his main church I don’t think anyone is listening. We are all sinners and we all fall short . Of course I am not invited to his parties so I don’t know what he really thinks but I get the impression that his advisers have led him to believe that placating a vocal minority will save the church a lot of trouble but like Captain played by Alec Guinness in Bridge Over the River Kiwi he has identified a little too much with the enemy as he contrived to keep his men busy building the bridge. While the captain realised his error and died trying to make amends I can only pray that Ingham will also see his error and come home.

  6. Rick Harris, O.P. says:

    White rabbit– I think you and I generally see eye to eye on what is going on in the churh, but I am curious as to why you say you are not sure if you should pray for your enemies or for enemies of the church. Jesus prayed for those who nailed him to the cross, and I am not sure you can say with certainty that he did not pray for his enemies at other times. Beyond that, he commanded us to pray for our enemies:

    “You have heard that it was said, ‘Eye for eye, and tooth for tooth.’ But I tell you, Do not resist an evil person. If someone strikes you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also. And if someone wants to sue you and take your tunic, let him have your cloak as well. If someone forces you to go one mile, go with him two miles. Give to the one who asks you, and do not turn away from the one who wants to borrow from you.

    “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, that you may be sons of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that? And if you greet only your brothers, what are you doing more than others? Do not even pagans do that? Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect. ” Matthew 5: 38-48.

    Try this prayer: “Lord I lift up to you ____________ [names of enemies] and I pray that thy will be done in their lives.”

  7. white rabbit says:

    Rick, I am always wiling to be corrected which is how I learn and I agree that Jesus prayed for the dumb temple soldiers that did the dirty work but a soldier is not responsible for anything that he does while under orders. Those dummies are no more responsible for the crucifixion than the kids that bombed the refugee camp better known as the city of Dresden. Pilate washed his hands and the Pharisees moved in and took control. I can’t think of any verse that even hints that Jesus prayed for the Pharisees.

    On another tact we know that Lucifer and his angels are doomed to hell (Rev 20:10). And the demons cried out in Matthew 8:29 “What have we to do with thee Jesus thous Son of God? art thous come hither to torment us before the time?” Jesus no where prayed for them. So we can tell that the enemies of Jesus are comdemned to hell and that seems to include the Pharisees. “Woe unto you pharisees.” (Like 11:43,44) and of course the lawyers in the next verse! So somewhere between the damned and the saved is a line that cannot be crossed. And I doubt if Ingham has crossed over.
    I am no expert on the Talmud or the Kabbala but to the best of my knowledge the forgiveness of Lucifer stems from the Talmud and from the same source is the idea that hell ( as in the lake of fire) is for cleansing so that God, the devil and I all live happily ever after.
    Perhaps I am being too clever to suggest that Jesus said that “You love your enemies but don’t love mine.” I just pray that I make it. But in the meantime I have to go off to work. And I really appreciate the feedback.

  8. Peter says:

    Hey, I guess I don’t need to say too much here now.

    Though, I’d not see much distinction between Jesus’s enemies and mine. He in I, and I in Him, we are His, bought with a price. Can there, really, ultimately be a distinction? What is done to us, is done to Him, what we do for others, we do for Him.

  9. code says:

    Hi Peter! šŸ™‚

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