It's sad to see how one of the great commandments from Jesus Himself is so controversial in our world today. In Matthew 5:39, Jesus tells us to turn the other cheek. We are often driven by revenge, …
It's sad to see how one of the great commandments from Jesus Himself is so controversial in our world today. In Matthew 5:39, Jesus tells us to turn the other cheek. We are often driven by revenge, looking to retaliate on those who harm us, but Jesus teaches a more powerful way.
Despite the other person's actions, the impact of forgiveness is counterculture, a wake-up call to those who wish to do us harm. When that person sees that we love them and accept them anyway, it shows them Jesus' love. It opens them up to Jesus' transformative power.
In Mark 12:31, Jesus says, "Love others as you love yourself. There is no greater commandment" (NIV).
He doesn't say, love others as you love yourself IF they are good to you, IF they love you back, or IF they agree with your opinions. He simply said to love them, no matter how they feel about you or treat you.
The typical behavior of the world is to retaliate, get even, or exact revenge. But God's way is to love, despite the circumstances. There are so many people at odds with each other today. The world is more divisive than ever. Conflict, even hate, exists between so many people groups.
Ask yourself, what type of world would we have if we all followed the teachings of Jesus?
Jesus said, "Love your enemies! Pray for those who persecute you! In that way, you will be acting as true children of your Father in heaven" (Matthew 5:44-45, NLT).
Consider for a moment how the world would be different if we all lived this out. Would we have more or less crime? More or less world conflicts? Wars? More or less racial tensions? More or less political arguments? Would there be more or less social justice?
Jesus brings life, peace, and hope to every situation. There is no trial, conflict, or pain too big for Him to heal. When we live the way, He has called us to live, we see beautiful, radical results. More than ever, the world needs faithful witnesses of Jesus' love. Are you ready to step into this calling?
Write Pastor Billy at firstname.lastname@example.org