Archive for the ‘Revenge’ Category

August 29th, 2014

Redefining Retaliation

“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.” Matthew 5:38-39 (ESV)

The religious leaders Jesus confronted during His earthly ministry had perverted the Mosaic Law. They inflamed the law of retaliation, known as the lex talionis, for their personal benefit. The law was intended to control excess and to ensure that the punishment would not exceed the offense (Exod. 21:22-25; Lev. 24:19-20). It was intended to prevent people from employing personal revenge. The religious leaders leveraged the law as a minimum. You would be expected to retaliate by punishing your offender at the same level of their offense to start with and then add to that revenge.

Jesus inverted their perversion by portraying the law of retaliation as a maximum. Revenge and retaliation would not be the proper response for the follower of Jesus Christ. Jesus presented the life-giving response of choosing to see the evil person as an opportunity rather than an obstacle. When someone strikes you on the cheek physically or through verbal assault, the fully yielded follower of Christ is to not retaliate based on his natural proclivity.

Turning the other cheek becomes the choice whereby you respond to the offense in the power of the Holy Spirit rather than reacting in the flesh. Instead of striking back by executing personal revenge, the believer is to respond with the grace and mercy of Christ.

You cannot redefine retaliation without operating in the power of the Holy Spirit. Your natural response will be to unleash revenge. Jesus ushers in a new response that blesses your offender and brings honor to God!

Drawing Near,

Stephen Trammell
Lead Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Friday, August 29th, 2014 at 1:00 am
Category Grace, Jesus, Revenge.
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August 29th, 2010

Redefining Retaliation

“You have heard that it was said, ‘Eye for eye, and tooth for tooth.’ But I tell you, Do not resist an evil person. If someone strikes you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also.” Matt 5:38-39 (NIV)

The religious leaders Jesus confronted during His earthly ministry had perverted the Mosaic Law. They inflamed the law of retaliation, known as the lex talionis, for their personal benefit. The law was intended to control excess and to ensure that the punishment would not exceed the offense (Ex. 21:22-25; Lev. 24:19-20). It was intended to prevent people from employing personal revenge. The religious leaders leveraged the law as a minimum. You would be expected to retaliate by punishing your offender at the same level of their offense to start with and then add to that revenge.

Jesus inverted their perversion by portraying the law of retaliation as a maximum. Revenge and retaliation would not be the proper response for the follower of Jesus Christ. Jesus presented the life-giving response of choosing to see the evil person as an opportunity rather than an obstacle. When someone strikes you on the cheek physically or through verbal assault, the fully yielded follower of Christ is to not retaliate based on his natural proclivity.

Turning the other cheek becomes the choice whereby you respond to the offense in the power of the Holy Spirit rather than reacting in the flesh. Instead of striking back by executing personal revenge, the believer is to respond with the grace and mercy of Christ.

You cannot redefine retaliation without operating in the power of the Holy Spirit. Your natural response will be to unleash revenge. Jesus ushers in a new response that blesses your offender and brings honor to God!

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Executive Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Sunday, August 29th, 2010 at 1:00 am
Category Grace, Jesus, Revenge.
Interact No Comments