STUFF THAT JESUS SAID..DAY 5
“YOU’VE HEARD IT SAID AN EYE FOR AN EYE, A TOOTH FOR A TOOTH. I TELL YOU DON’T RESIST AN EVIL PERSON. WHOEVER SLAPS YOU ON YOUR RIGHT CHEEK, TURN THE OTHER ALSO. WHOEVER COMPELS YOU TO GO A MILE, GO TWO. GIVE TO HIM WHO ASKS AND FROM HIM WHO WANTS TO BORROW FROM YOU AND DO NOT TURN AWAY.”
Obviously, this is not the way which most of us think and live generally. Especially the part about getting smacked around and then turning the other cheek! Say what..what was Jesus driving at with these statements?
In Matthew 5:38–39, Jesus says, “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 anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to them the other cheek also.” The concept of “turning the other cheek” is a difficult one for us to grasp. Allowing a second slap after being slapped once does not come naturally.
In the section of Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount in which He commands us to turn the other cheek, He addresses the need for true transformation, versus mere rule-keeping. It’s not enough to obey the letter of the law; we must conform to the spirit of the law as well.
Jesus is saying we need to be pure inside and out and as accommodating as possible for the sake of a lost world. A word about the “slap” that Jesus says we should endure. Jesus here speaks of personal slights of any kind. The slap (or the “smiting,” as the KJV has it) does not have to involve literal, physical violence. Even in our day, a “slap in the face” is a metaphor for an unexpected insult or offense. Did someone insult you? Let him, Jesus says. Are you shocked and offended? Don’t be. And don’t return insult for insult. Turn the other cheek.
Turning the other cheek does not imply pacifism, nor does it mean we place ourselves or others in danger. Jesus’ command to turn the other cheek is simply a command to forgo retaliation for personal offenses.
There was a time in history when a man would feel compelled to protect his honor. Retaliation is what most people expect and how worldly people act. Turning the other cheek requires help from on high. Responding to hatred with love and ignoring personal slights display the supernatural power of the indwelling Holy Spirit and may afford the chance to share the gospel.