Concerning Retaliation

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Matthew 5:38-42

 

Today’s passage seems very easy, but try to practice it, you will know how difficult it is.  I vaguely remember in my childhood once when I went home crying as my friend had hit me.  My dad told me go back to the friend and give the other side.  I was more hurt and I told him he did not love me instead of coming out and firing him you are asking to take more beating.  I did not understand my dad, though he was a living example, many times he made me understand and it did not change my opinion at once, but made me think.  Later when I started reading the Bible, I connected to the lessons I was taught as a child.

Before Moses, the rule was to kill a person if they hurt anyone in your family, you were justified in your avenging action. During the time of the Exodus, Moses changed the laws as required by the circumstances and made it tooth for a tooth, i.e 1 retaliatory action to befit what was metted out to you.  The intention was to regulate and limit revenge and retaliation for damages.

Jesus said he did not come to abolish the law but to fulfil it. As He saw the hatred amongst the people was increasing as these laws instilled more hate than discipline.  His teachings are based on love and with a strategy for winning over hearts by shaming the opponent.  

In recent times, we have seen Sr. Rani who was brutally murdered and Staines who was burnt alive with his two sons.  In both cases, the family forgave the murderers and this was only possible with the grace of Jesus Christ.  The one who killed Sr Rani, cannot understand how can anyone forgive this and he has repented and changed himself and is helping others.

The messages in this passage is:

  • To Forgive
  • To love our enemies
  • Sometimes it’s okay to be cheated, because it will turn into gain
  • To be charitable 

Giving to beggars and borrowers is showing general kindness, forbearance, generosity and an open attitude towards people.

Lets examine ourselves and look into our heart and ask God to show us if there is any thing that needs to change in us and ask him to give us the grace to accept and make an effort to following in the Way Jesus taught us.

 

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