This section deals with how we are to interact with people, whether they are saved or unsaved. Some of the verses definitely relate to interaction with the unsaved (such as v. 14); but most are applicable to our interactions with all people.
[This section is in the process of being written.]
Blessing one's enemies (v. 14)
"Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse."
God requires us to bless those who persecute (or willfully harm) us. This is something we cannot do without the power of the Holy Spirit enabling us to do so.
According to Romans 8:28, God uses all things to accomplish good for those who love him. This includes the things that our persecutors do to us!
If you are following Jesus, you can expect the world to mistreat (persecute) you... just as they did to Jesus.
We are to treat those who harm us the same way Jesus treated us - with blessing.
There are two New Testament Greek word groups that are often translated as "blessing" in the English Bible. This article looks at both of them and examines some principles that can guide us in knowing how to "bless" those who harm us.
There are some legitimate instances of cursing found in the Bible; but the type of cursing mentioned in Romans 12:14 is prohibited. This article looks at the various ways this concept is used in the New Testament.
Rejoicing and mourning (v. 15)
"Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn."
We are to rejoice and mourn with others, but not the way the world does. The world has has distorted values (having rejected God's values); so the way it rejoices and mourns is often incomplete, distorted or just plain wrong.
We must rejoice in ways that will honor God. This means we will sometimes not rejoice when the world does, and often rejoice when the world doesn't.
We must mourn in ways that will honor God. This means we will sometimes not mourn when the world does, and often mourn when the world doesn't.
[To be continued]