“You treat me to a feast, while my enemies watch. You honor me as your guest.”  (Psalm 23:5).

 

Dear readers,

 

David had many enemies. Among them was King Saul. He became jealous vs. the young David. He wanted to kill him. David is playing his harp. Filled with hate, Saul throws the spear at him. He wants to spear David brutally against the wall (1.Sam. 18, 11). David can only barely escape.

 

His own son Absalom also attacked David later. And he became his enemy. Absalom fought against his father (2nd Sam. 15 ff). A rather deadly family tragedy.

 

Jesus Christ told His disciples that there would be hostilities within their own families. (Mathew 10, 35). He, Jesus, will become the reason for this. Whoever decides to live with the Lord Jesus Christ will also be attacked. He will not be greeted with understanding for this decision. Rather he must expect rejection. Sometimes even with violence.

 

Despite of his troubles which David had to go through, he experienced how the good shepherd prepares and sets the table for him. He is invited to the table of the good shepherd. His enemies had to stay away and were forced to watch from a distance. They remain outside the table with the God of love.

 

How is the table being prepared and set-up with? For us Christians, it is all the blessings that Jesus Christ acquired for us through his suffering and death which are spread out on this table. We are invited to receive bread and wine. We are invited to receive God's consolation. And furthermore, there is no lack of peace and hope on the table which the Good Shepherd Jesus has prepared for us.

 

The only role which one of God´s enemies has left for himself is to look on as a spectator. Whoever considers Jesus Christ as his enemy has no part in his blessings. But that shouldn´t be the case to remain! Jesus Christ told us to love our enemies (Mathew 5, 44): “But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be children of your Father in heaven.”

 

We are to love those people who do not yet know God's love. We should meet these men and women with the love of God. This does not only mean to treat others in a friendly and loving way, but to pray for them. Jesus has shown us the way. On the cross of Golgotha he prays for his enemies: Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.” (Luke 23, 34).

 

Job too, the man full of sorrow and grief, prayed for his friends who had become strangers to him (Job 42:10).

 

We may rejoice at the laid table! But we are not allowed to hand out place tickets and determine who may or may not come to the Lord's table. We have no right to decide who may come to the Good Shepherd's table. Any invitation is mercy! It is a gift. And therefore I am also privileged to pray for other people and to ask the host Jesus to invite my "enemies" to his table as well. So that enemies may become true friends, sisters and brothers, reconciled through the Lord Jesus Christ.

 

God bless your intercession!

 

(Translated with www.DeepL.com/Translator (free version), edited by R. Jordan

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