Scriptures : Matthew 5:38-42
“You have heard that it was said, ‘An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth.’ But I tell you not to resist an evil person. But whoever slaps you on your right cheek, turn the other to him also. If anyone wants to sue you and take away your tunic, let him have your cloak also. And whoever compels you to go one mile, go with him two. Give to him who asks you, and from him who wants to borrow from you do not turn away.”
There are two ways we can respond to a person who does evil to us. One is we repay evil for the evil he has done to us. This action is based on the law, ‘An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth.’ The other is we repay good for the evil he has done for us. The Lord Jesus describes this as ‘turning the other cheek also’ or ‘going the second mile’. This action is based on grace and truth.
When the Lord Jesus came to the earth, He brought the grace and the truth of God. He revealed that God loved people and that He did not want anyone to perish. He also revealed that our real enemy is not people, but the devil who is the author of all evil. Thus, if we as Christians repay evil with evil, God will suffer because it will make the person who does evil to us thinks that God will punish the sins he has done. It will be harder for him to believe that God is good and that He has freely forgiven his sins.
God is good to those who do good as well as to those who do evil because He loves both unconditionally (Mat 5:45). He is good to those who do evil because He wants to give them chance to repent from their evil deeds. So, if we repay evil to those who do evil to us, we will misrepresent God and we will make them think that God will punish them immediately for the evil deeds they have done and there is no chance for them to repent. Besides, if we repay evil with evil, we allow, albeit unconsciously, the devil to work in our lives. Instead of being transformed into the image of God, we will be conformed to the image of the devil.
What if someone does evil to us and we do not repay him with evil, but we do not repay his evil with good either? Instead, we simply do nothing. We must remember that good and evil are not just actions, but they are spiritual forces. If evil is done to us and we do nothing, its force will oppress us. Our heart will not be peaceful. If we are strong, this evil will not break us, but we have not overcome it either. If we are weak, sooner or later this evil will break us and we will repay this evil with more evil.
The only way to respond to an evil person is not to resist him, not to repay him evil for evil or nothing for evil, but good for evil. The Lord Jesus did not say, “Whoever slaps you on our right cheek, slap his right cheek back or protect the other cheek,” but “turn the other cheek to him also.” He did not say, “If anyone wants to sue you and take away your tunic, sue back or fight for it or do nothing,” but, “let him have your cloak also.” He did not say ,”Whoever compels you to go one mile, go with him one mile,” but, “go with him two.”
Evil is the force of the devil and good is the force of God. Good is more powerful than evil. Whenever anyone does evil, he is allowing himself to become more like the devil and he is destroying himself. Whenever anyone does good, he is allowing himself to become more like God and he is building himself. If we repay evil for evil, then both we and the other person will be destroyed, but if we repay evil with good, then we do not allow evil to destroy us and we destroy evil in the other person. Therefore, it is written, “Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.” (Rom 12:21)
✨ Indonesian brother