RSS

Tag Archives: retribution

David Spares Saul

When Saul returned from following the Philistines, he was told, ‘David is in the wilderness of En-gedi.’ 2Then Saul took three thousand chosen men out of all Israel, and went to look for David and his men in the direction of the Rocks of the Wild Goats. 3He came to the sheepfolds beside the road, where there was a cave; and Saul went in to relieve himself. Now David and his men were sitting in the innermost parts of the cave. 4The men of David said to him, ‘Here is the day of which the Lord said to you, “I will give your enemy into your hand, and you shall do to him as it seems good to you.” ’ Then David went and stealthily cut off a corner of Saul’s cloak. 5Afterwards David was stricken to the heart because he had cut off a corner of Saul’s cloak. 6He said to his men, ‘The Lord forbid that I should do this thing to my lord, the Lord’s anointed, to raise my hand against him; for he is the Lord’s anointed.’ 7So David scolded his men severely and did not permit them to attack Saul. Then Saul got up and left the cave, and went on his way. (1 Samuel 24:1-7, NRSV)

David had his chance to kill Saul. And if it would have been Saul in the innermost part of the cave that David came into, Saul would have killed him. But David didn’t. Why?

What would you have done here?

Would you have killed Saul? Would you get the retribution you wanted?

David knew that Saul would kill him if he had the chance, yet David, took a step back and only cut off a corner of Saul’s cloak to prove he was there, and could have done much worse, but didn’t because he was following God.

Do we follow God or our own selfish desires?

What would you have done?

What should we do?

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

repay evil with love

Finally, all of you, have unity of spirit, sympathy, love for one another, a tender heart, and a humble mind. Do not repay evil for evil or abuse for abuse; but, on the contrary, repay with a blessing. It is for this that you were called—that you might inherit a blessing. For “Those who desire life and desire to see good days, let them keep their tongues from evil and their lips from speaking deceit; let them turn away from evil and do good; let them seek peace and pursue it. For the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous, and his ears are open to their prayer. But the face of the Lord is against those who do evil.” (1 Peter 3:8-12, NRSV)

Retribution is normal.

We all want to get back at those who do us harm.

Yet God calls us to a higher standard.

God does not want us to repay evil with evil. God calls us to love our enemies and to pray for those who persecute us.

So step above the world and be the blessing that God needs us to be for His love to be made known!

 

Tags: , , , , ,

are you kidding!

‘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 an evildoer. But if anyone strikes you on the right cheek, turn the other also; and if anyone wants to sue you and take your coat, give your cloak as well; and if anyone forces you to go one mile, go also the second mile. Give to everyone who begs from you, and do not refuse anyone who wants to borrow from you. ‘You have heard that it was said, “You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.” But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, so that you may be children of your Father in heaven; for he makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the righteous and on the unrighteous. For if you love those who love you, what reward do you have? Do not even the tax-collectors do the same? And if you greet only your brothers and sisters, what more are you doing than others? Do not even the Gentiles do the same? Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect. (Matthew 5:38-48, NRSV)

Are you for real Jesus?

Really I’m suppose to not seek retaliation, but turn the other cheek to become a punching bag and to let people walk all over me by giving them everything I got!

If we take the words at face value then yes that is what it says, but we have to understand the context.

You see it was said an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth so that there would be justice and not retaliation. It is suppose to keep it equitable. Yet it turns the bullied into the bully. It makes the one taking the eye, just as bad as the person who took the eye to cause the taking of the second eye…

And as Jesus usually does He ratchets up what society expects…

But we still have to understand what He is saying…

But if anyone strikes you on the right cheek, turn the other also;

This sounds like Jesus wants us to be a punching bag, but actually it is leveling the playing field. You see someone of a higher status would strike a person on the right cheek with the back of their right hand. But in order to strike a person on the left cheek they would have to use the palm of their right hand and in Jesus’ day this signified that those people were equals. One did not strike a lower statues person with their palm… It is leveling and saying we are equal in the eyes of God!

and if anyone forces you to go one mile, go also the second mile.

Again Jesus is asking to go above and beyond. But we have to understand that the understanding in the Roman Empire was that any person should and could be asked (forced) to care a Roman’s soldier’s pack for a mile. Jesus is saying take the expectation and do it happily and then go an extra mile! We as disciples are called to go the extra mile. We can not do the bare minimum with those we love. Everyone does that so how does the world see the love of God, by us as disciples living like Jesus and loving those who nail us to the cross, you and me!

So know Jesus is not asking you to be a doormat. He is asking you to share His love with the world!

 

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , ,