ROUGH CUTS| Love for enemies

TODAY is Holy Tuesday, the third day of the commemoration of the passion, the sufferings and the death of Jesus Christ, God the Father’s way of saving humanity from the wages of sin – the Holy Week.

     In deference to this week’s holiness and sanctity our normal scheme of tackling social and political issues in our city as well as of the nation, will give way to discourses on topics more relevant to the season of Lent.

     We believe that not too many of us are in possession of the Holy Bible, or perhaps only a few of those who have the Holy Book have the time to read it in utmost seriousness. Thus, we find it appropriate to pick up some excerpts and make these the primary items in our column starting today until Easter Sunday, the culmination of the Holy Week. And as much as possible we would endeavor to relate it with today’s burning issues in our country and government.

     Luke 6.27-36 talks of love for the enemies.

     27 “But I tell you who hear me: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you;

     28 “bless those who curse you, and pray for those who mistreat you.

     29 “If anyone hits you on one cheek, let him hit the other one too; if someone takes your coat, let him have your shirt as well.

     30 “Give to everyone who asks you for something, and when someone takes what is yours, do not ask for it back.

     31 “Do for others just what you want them to do for you.

     32 “If you love only the people who love you, why should you receive a blessing? Even sinners love those who love them!

     33 “And if you do good only to those who do good to you, why should you receive a blessing? Even sinners do that!

     34 “And if you lend only to those from whom you hope to get it back, why should you receive a blessing? Even sinners lend to sinners to get back the same amount!

     35 “No! Love your enemies and do good to them; lend and expect nothing back. You will then have a great reward, and you will be children of the Most High God. For He is good to the ungrateful and the wicked.

     36 Be merciful just as your Father is merciful”.

     Taken in today’s context it is safe to interpret the whole length of the gospel with this modern quote: “Get your friends close, but get your enemies even closer ”.

     Yes, in the wake of the Mamasapano incident some people are trying to distance the government from what they think is the country’s worst enemy, the revolutionary Moro Islamic Liberation Front or MILF.

     It is clear that when the government and the MILF agreed to sit down and talk about peace over a year ago, both were longing for it. When the agreement was forged and signed a year ago it was an indication that the government and the Moro people who have been waging several decades of bloody secessionist campaign are capable of loving and understanding each other.

     The revolutionaries too, think that it is not hard for them to love the government because after all, the latter’s intention is to stop the bloodbath in Moro land so the people will be able to live together harmoniously and peacefully.

     In the process though, it asks of every Filipino the widest latitude of understanding and sacrificing.

     Yes, like what the Gospel teaches us we, the government and the Moro revolutionary group, need to hold back our anger against those who we perceived have caused the Mamasapano clash. This is the only way – God’s way – to take away the animosity of the protagonists against each other. This is the only way that God has made available for us to find the long desired Mindanao Shangrila.

                                                                             -30-

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