When we are hurt or harmed by our neighbors, our natural, immediate instinct is to hurt back. 'AN EYE FOR AN EYE, AND A TOOTH FOR A TOOTH.' Sometimes, it is not just to hurt back, but to hurt back even more than we were first hurt. We want to retialiate, to give them what they deserve. We demand JUSTICE!
That's because, as human beings, we believe we have certain rights that, if given up, would give others license to walk all over us. This concept of personal rights is based on our own selfish interest and motives, not on the true sense of justice. Jesus reveals to us that God has a higher purpose for our lives. He wants us to resist the temptation to retaliate. He calls us not to retaliation but to radical love.
As His children, God has given us immense and immeasurable blessings. He has adopted us to be part of His family. He has redeemed us, forgiven us of our sins. And most of all, He has given us a gift of eternal inheritance that will never fade, and has sealed us with the promise of salvation through His Holy Spirit. All these He has given us in Christ Jesus our Lord!
Let us respond worthy of our calling: in love. Walk in Light, walk in the Truth, be filled with His Spirit and love other people. We must respond in generosity to all that He has done for us and develop a greater trust and faith in Him so that we can live our lives according to His ways.
There is a new perspective that leads us away from retaliation and towards radical love. We need to develop this new perspective — the perspective of a second mile Christian. We need to love just like Jesus. He calls us, His followers, to walk on a higher road–the road of love, grace and Christ-likeness.
Jesus' PERSPECTIVE of the 2nd Mile: Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good. This strikes us as impossible! Too good, too idealistic? A Christian should be willing to do more than what's reasonably expected by others. How could we possibly do that?
Simple. By Jesus' POWER in the 2nd Mile: Jesus' power gives us the ability to let go of our
Jesus says, “I want you to do this with joy. I want you to do this from your heart without grumbling or complaining. I want you to be an example of what love is all about.” We are to give up our personal interests.
When there are interruptions in your life, what do you do? Do you say, “I'm sorry, I'm busy. I don't have time for you?” Whatever it is that you have planned, put it off. Loving just like Jesus means going the extra mile. It means when your wife needs you, you run to her. If your husband needs you, you attend to it. If your child needs you, you do everything you can to be with him.
But there are many people who do not deserve your time and your acts of kindness. We are still to love them just like Jesus. This goes for your enemies as well — even more so for them. When they see you do this, they will have nothing to say against you.
Jesus' PATTERN for the 2nd Mile: Jesus is the pattern for going the second mile. Before the crucifixion, Jesus Himself was falsely accused. He was humiliated before the crowd. He was insulted, slandered, and slapped left and right. He experienced excruciating pain all the way to death on the cross. Jesus did not deserve it. Instead, He gave His life for us. He gave up His possessions, His pride and His personal interests. He chose to love us. For Him it was the right thing to do. He died in order that we may live.
Jesus is speaking to His true believers, His true followers. He calls us to be second mile Christians in order to show His love through our lives. He wants us to be living testimonies of His grace and mercy for the world to see. That is what this is all about.
In order to live this radical love — to go the 2 mile — you need Jesus in your life. Ask Him to come into your life right now. Ask Him to love through you. He will do that because He loved you first.