Theological Reflection

Love is Not a Warm Feeling
From: Msgr. Rossetti’s best seller: “Diary of an American Exorcist” 

It is hard for people to understand Jesus' command to love one's enemies. His example on the Cross should inspire us. Jesus loved those who put Him to death. He gave his life for everyone, including the ones who killed Him.

This does not mean that Jesus had "warm feelings" about those who did evil. At times, Jesus was angry at those who rejected Him. As Scripture tells us, He looked "around at them with anger and grieved at their hardness of heart" (Mark 3:5). Moreover, Jesus was filled with a righteous anger when He saw how people defamed God's Temple. So He fashioned a whip of cords and drove them out, overturning the money changers' tables (see Matt. 21:12).

As noted previously, loving and forgiving do not necessarily mean having warm feelings toward everyone. In our baptismal promises, we reject Satan and his works. At times, we will be filled with a righteous anger toward these works and the works of all who do evil.

But cursing others, harboring hatred, wishing others evil--all these come from Satan. If we engage in such, we are promoting Satan's agenda, not God's. God is infinite love and compassion. Does loving our enemies including demons, open us up to letting evil into our lives? Not at all. Rather, it is rage, hatred, and unforgiveness that are doors to the demonic.

Some time ago, I let go of my anger toward the demons. I no longer hate them. There is a great inner freedom and peace in letting go of all such hatred and judgmentalism, even toward demons.

I feel bad for the damned and for all who reject God. They will endure everlasting torment, not by the will of God, but by their own sinful choice. For God "wills everyone to be saved and come to knowledge of the truth" (1 Tim. 2:4).