Matthew 5:38–42 (ESV)
have heard that it was said, ‘An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth.’ 39 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. 40 And
if anyone would sue you and take your tunic, let him have your cloak as well. 41 And if anyone forces you to go one mile, go with him two miles. 42 Give to the one who begs from you, and do
not refuse the one who would borrow from you.
Jesus instructs His disciples not to resist evil people,
a teaching that has provoked much debate over the centuries. As with some other statements Jesus made in this portion of the Sermon on the Mount, there is a degree of exaggeration in what He says. We need to grasp His essential point. Jesus provokes self-examination
in every Christian’s heart: have I always been generous in sharing with the needy, whether they are good or evil? Jesus was totally generous in giving His life for us. In Him, we receive forgiveness and renewal.
I pray: Show me Your face, dear Jesus, in the hurting eyes of the needy, that I may help them as You helped me. Amen.
Engelbrecht, E. A. (2009). The Lutheran
Study Bible (p. 1589). St. Louis, MO: Concordia Publishing House.