Jesus and the curse of one’s enemies

Posted on 04/30/13 1 Comment

Those who defend the voice of the imprecatory psalmist insist that there are times when it is appropriate to curse one’s enemy. And when is that time? Presumably when you are facing grave injustice at the hands of your enemies just like the psalmist faced.

I can think of no greater injustice than an innocent individual being murdered unjustly by his enemies. So if ever there was a paradigm case to pray the imprecatory psalms it would be on an occasion such as this.

And yet when Jesus, an innocent man, was being murdered unjustly by his enemies, he did not avail himself of the imprecatory curse but instead prayed “Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do.” (Luke 23:34; KJV)

Let’s not miss the significance of this fact. If Jesus is who the Christian says he is, then the injustice he suffered was unique in history, and the warrant he had for rendering a curse against his enemies was far superior to that of the imprecatory psalmist, or indeed of any other person who has ever lived. And yet, rather than avail himself of the model presented by the imprecatory psalmist for just such an occasion, Jesus instead chose to bless for his enemies.

In light of this witness, how tragic it is that some Christians continue to believe there are occasions where it is right and proper to call down curses on one’s enemies.

  • physicsandwhiskey

    Perhaps Jesus’s situation was a bit of a special case?