Matthew 5:39 NASB
But I say to you, do not resist an evil person;
but whoever slaps you on your right cheek,
turn the other to him also.
When the Lord Jesus teaches here that we are not to resist the evil one, he of course does not mean that we should surrender defenselessly to one who would cause us harm, and should give every criminal the freedom to do what his evil heart tells him.
But the Lord Jesus does want to say here, that no vengeance or retaliation should drive us in this.
In the Old Covenant it was an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth.
But now the motive will have to be, justice in love.
The Lord Jesus has given us the perfect example in this.
They slapped him on the cheek as he stood before the Jewish council. It had taken no effort for Him to destroy those who did. But in silence He endured and prayed on the cross even for those who killed Him.
That example is for His followers to follow.
▪︎ His grace must also compel us to grace.
▪︎ His love should stir us up to show love, also, and especially, towards our enemies.
That is blessing those who hate us,
and loving those who harm us,
for His name’s sake.
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