You have heard that it was said, ‘An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth.’ But I say to you, Do not resist the one who is evil. But if anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also. And if anyone would sue you and take your tunic, let him have your cloak as well. And if anyone forces you to go one mile, go with him two miles. Give to the one who begs from you, and do not refuse the one who would borrow from you. (Matthew 5:38-42)
Pastor John’s Notes:
The Way of Jesus Christ is not of this world; it is a way that liberates us from the bitterness and hatred that is common to all humanity. It is free from worldly attachments, the desire for things, and the love of wealth and honor. It is a way that liberates us from the self-imposed bondage of being perpetually offended. The Way is not merely theoretical but must be lived out in real-time. For example, it is one thing to talk about the excellence of forgiveness; it is another thing to actually forgive someone who has grievously harmed you. It is one thing to admire the principles of self-sacrifice and service to others; it is another to open your wallet and give money to someone who asks for it. Learning about the Way of Christ shows us what to do, but it is in the doing of the Way that our faith is shown to be genuine. And it is only in action that we are transformed.
Lord, show me this day how I can live sacrificially. Let my faith be more than theoretical, but help me see the daily challenges I face as opportunities for exercising my faith. Let the way I live bear witness to your grace and kindness.