Many are rejoicing over the violent death of our enemy.

They are dancing in the streets (even some who are too young to even really appreciate all this).

Some are saying things like “Rot in Hell”, even on the front page of their newspaper.

Does this sound familiar? Does it sound anything at all like the way that certain people, who are identified as our enemies, might speak and behave? In fact, does it not sound exactly like they have behaved.

I’m reminded of how, 146 years ago, Lincoln reacted when the South lost the Civil War. He asked the band to play Dixie. He understood, it seems, something that many of us USAmericans, and even those of us who might say we follow Jesus, forget. We forget about Proverbs 24:17, as I’ve already seen posted today. “Do not rejoice when your enemy falls, and when he stumbles do not let your heart rejoice,”

For those of us who follow Jesus, we have a much higher call, a much higher standard, don’t we.

From Matthew 5 “You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor’ and ‘hate your enemy.’  But I say to you, love your enemy and pray for those who persecute you, so that you may be like your Father in heaven, since he causes the sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. For if you love those who love you, what reward do you have? Even the tax collectors do the same, don’t they?  And if you only greet your brothers, what more do you do? Even the Gentiles do the same, don’t they?  So then, be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect.”

Are we even trying to do that?

Scripture quotations from the New English Translation at