“Arise, go to Nineveh, that great city, and call out against it, for their evil has come up before me.” (Jonah 1:2, ESV)
Quite recently, I had the opportunity to call out on a supposedly fellow-Christian worker regarding certain false teachings. As Christians and heralds of the Gospel, we this is our prophetic duty for we are the ambassadors for Christ, as if God is making His appeal through us (2 Cor. 5:20). Some people might find it harsh and unloving, but I did not feel like it was. In fact, I felt that it was by calling a person’s attention to wrong doing or teaching that I am able to show love and concern, not only to that person but also to those whom he influences. The apostle Paul instructed the young bishop Timothy to “Watch your life and doctrine closely. Persevere in them, because if you do, you will save both yourself and your hearers” (1 Tim. 4:16, NIV).
Long ago, God called Jonah call out and warn the inhabitants of the city of Nineveh, the capital of Assyria, that God will decimate their city after forty days in order for them to repent and change their ways. However, Jonah did not want to do so and instead tried his best to escape from God, not because he was afraid of the Assyrians, but because he knew that if they repented then god would have mercy on them and withdraw His punishment. Very truly, it is quite difficult to desire salvation for our enemies, especially for those who persecute us or those who obstinately lead others astray. Just like King David, we may just want to pray those imprecatory psalms against them. Nevertheless, our Lord Jesus Christ has called us to love and pray for our enemies, not for their destruction or damnation, but for their salvation.