Relationships (Mt 5:38-42)
Come, Holy Spirit. Teach me how to love as a disciple should.
Picture Jesus teaching kindness to his disciples.
The Jewish law to take only “An eye for an eye” was actually merciful in Jesus’ time. It limited the amount of revenge. Jesus goes beyond this legal mercy. The disciple must respond with extreme thoughtfulness, hoping to lead his opponent to faith in Jesus.
Gospel Text: (Read slowly, possibly aloud.)
Jesus said to his disciples, “You have heard it said, ‘An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth.’ But I say to you, ‘Offer no resistance to evil.’ If someone strikes you on your right cheek, turn the other to him. If anyone wants to go to law with you over your tunic, hand him your cloak as well. If someone forces you to go one mile, then go two miles.
Give to him who asks and do not turn your back on the borrower.”
Thoughts: (Read all. Ponder the ones that attract you.)
- Jesus describes the new relationships in the Kingdom. If his disciples relate to others in this way, the Kingdom will spread quickly.
- Jesus asks his disciples not to retaliate. In this way violence will end and the gospel can be preached.
- Jesus asks the disciple to be patient, so others can see the Kingdom’s power.
- The disciple does not invoke the law. Let the person have both your tunic and cloak. He is probably in need.
- The disciple’s generosity in going “the second mile” witnesses to Jesus’ Kingdom.
- After experiencing the disciple’s charity, the person will listen to the message about the Kingdom.
Affections: (When one touches your heart, use your own words.)
- O Jesus, change me. Make my heart like your heart.
- Help me to bring everyone into your Kingdom, no matter what the cost!
- Jesus, I will set aside my interests for your interests. I will forget myself for your gospel.
- I will use every situation to bring the Kingdom to others.
- Jesus, if I turn my back on no one, you will not turn your back on me.
Resolutions: (Possibly you might want to make your own.)
+ I will examine my relationships to others. Are they according to the Kingdom?
+ In my generosity, I will be a herald of the Kingdom.
Thought for the Day: (To recall your meditation.)
Offer no resistance. Go a second mile. Hand him your tunic. Give to him who asks.