This week for Geek Devotions… Dallas and Celeste are sick as our friend Josh over at Victims and Villains has stepped in to help us out! This week he takes a look at an issue of “Birds of Prey” and talks about who we are supposed to love and domestic violence.
In Birds of Prey #15, we meet a woman named Olivia Crichton. Olivia is a neighbor to Dinah Lance aka Black Canary. After a mission, Dinah is downstairs of her apartment complex getting the mail she received while she was away. In walks Olivia with a pretty severe black eye. Dinah asks the doormen her story, and after she gets the information she desires, so she goes up to talk to Olivia.
This is the exchange between the two characters:
Olivia: What do you care? Are you some kind of hero?
Dinah: Just a neighbor. I could be a friend.
Really allow what Dinah says here to really sink in. Within the perimeters of the DC Universe and mythology, she is just as Olivia calls her, a hero. For this very moment in time, all she wants to be is a neighbor.
35 And one of them, a lawyer, asked him a question to test him. 36 “Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?” 37 And he said to him, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. 38 This is the great and first commandment. 39 And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself.
–Matthew 22: 35-39
At this moment, Jesus took the 10 commandments and shrank them down to locations. As we read here in verse 35, this lawyer approached Jesus as a test. What truly is the greatest commandment? Jesus boils it down to love. Love towards the father for first and your neighbor as second. Catch that, what he says: neighbor. Even when Jesus talks about enemies – look what he says:
43 “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ 44 But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you,
This world will tell you exactly what Jesus says here in verse 43 – hate your enemy. Within these first two verses, Jesus says to love your neighbor and enemies. He even dares to go as far as telling us to pray for those that persecute us. The enemies or bullies that we have within our path; they are the one in need of God’s love the most. After all, when was the last time you loved or prayed for an enemy?
Look what Jesus says as he continues:
For he makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good and sends rain on the just and on the unjust. 46 For if you love those who love you, what reward do you have? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? 47 And if you greet only your brothers,[a] what more are you doing than others? Do not even the Gentiles do the same?
–Matthew 5:45b – 47
If you hear nothing else from this video, please listen to what Jesus is saying in verses 46 & 47 – if you love those who love you what reward do you have? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? If you greet only your brothers, what more are you doing than others? Do not even the Gentiles do the same? Jesus is comparing the actions of the religious rulers and sinners of his day to the actions of the Kingdom. Are you daring to love your enemies? Pray for them? Greeting those who’ve wronged us? Even daring to serve them?
Dinah doesn’t have to step in, but she does because she’s a neighbor, a hero and someone daring for friendship. This woman, Olivia, is a victim of domestic violence. Domestic violence sees nearly 20 people in a minute experience abuse from a significant other. In one year, this averages out to over 10 million men and women. In 2017, there were 1.3 million attempted suicides with 47, 173 successful. Please understand the power of love. The power of God’s love.
7 Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God, and whoever loves has been born of God and knows God. 8 Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love.
–1 John 4:7-8
As Hawk Nelson put it, “we’re the ones who fight down on our knees. Who dare to love our enemies.” This season, the best gift you can give anyone would be love. Who’s neighbor will you be?
We want to give a HUGE thanks to Josh for stepping up and helping us out this week.
For more information about Victims and Villains Podcast checkout the following links!
Stitcher Radio: https://goo.gl/e7rUoP
Suicide is Currently the 10th leading cause of death in our country
44,965 people die yearly from this disease
For every successful suicide, 25 more have been attempted. That’s 1,104,825 suicides attempted every year.
123 people die daily from it!
If you need help or know someone who needs help check out the following info for the Suicide Prevention Hotline
1-800-273-8255 or Text 741-741
Find your state: http://www.suicide.org/suicide-hotlines
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