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5:38-42 | Retaliation

5:38-42 | Retaliation - Morgan Bradley
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The Old Way

Eye For an Eye

  1. Found in three places in the Old Testament

    1. Exodus 21:24 | When two men strive against each other…

    2. Leviticus 24:19-20 | Payments for crimes

    3. Deuteronomy 19:21 | False witnesses accusing an innocent

  2. Sounds rather barbaric to most people

    1. Leviticus 24:19-20 | Literally injury for injury

    2. Mutilation should have no place in modern day courts

    3. They miss the principle behind the practice

  3. It's intended purpose

    1. Establish equity in sentences

    2. Defines justice

      1. Deut. 19:21 | Your eye shall not pity

    3. Prevented extreme punishments - restrains revenge

 

It's Abuse

  1. What was meant as a judicial guideline became a justification for personal revenge

    1. 'Tit-for-tat' mentality

    2. Clint and I always punching each other

    3. Completely ignoring passages like Lev. 19:18 & Prov. 24:29

  2. Perpetual conflict

    1. Hatfield's and McCoy's

    2. We want them to feel the same pain we felt

 

The New Way

Do not resist

  1. There is no question that bad people will 'get us' in some way

    1. Our first reaction is to get even or ahead

    2. Christ tells us the revenge is not the way of his kingdom

    3. It doesn't matter that these people are evil

    4. It doesn't matter that we have every right to retaliate

  2. Three examples of how the evil one oppresses us

    1. An insulting slap

    2. Suing for your tunic

    3. Compelling you to work

    4. Begging from you

How literal are we supposed to take this?

  1. If we take it at face value…

    1. It becomes impossible to live life

    2. We cannot defend our families

    3. We can't even tell the people to not do evil things

  2. Must be balanced with the rest of scripture

    1. Jesus rebukes the high priest - John 18:23

    2. Give to one who asks - but only the ones who work - 2 Thess. 3:10

    3. Rebuke your brother - Matt. 18:15-17

  3. But we cannot simply rationalize it all away

    1. Wave away the difficult and unappealing parts

    2. It is a mistake to say "Jesus actually meant…" without appealing to other sections of scripture

Do not resist evil with evil | Romans 12:17-21

  1. Do not repay evil for evil

    1. Too often our responses are motivated by pride

    2. We commit the same sin when paying them back

  2. Give thought to what is honorable

    1. Our actions must be motivated by love for the other one

    2. This requires thought being put into our actions

  3. Leave vengeance to God

    1. Our vindication is not in this life

    2. We are not the final judges in life

  4. Overcome evil with good

    1. Quotes Proverbs 25:21-22

    2. How can we make our enemies our friends?

    3. Daryl Davis | 200 KKK

 

Back to Jesus' four examples

  1. Take insults in stride

    1. Break the vicious cycle of trading insults

    2. Show your humility to your enemies

  2. Be ready to be defrauded

    1. 1 Cor. 7:5-8

    2. Show that man does not live by bread alone

    3. Win over an enemy with your generosity

  3. Serve your enemies

    1. Exodus 23:4-5

    2. Make them your brother

  4. Don't be stingy with your love

    1. We are to love our enemies