Word at Work June 3, 2016

FRIDAY, JUNE 3
Scripture: Matthew 5:38-39, John 2:13-17

In Matthew 5:38-39 we are told, “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.” It is obvious when you get to John 2 that Jesus did not exclusively follow His own instructions. He violated the directive to turn the other cheek and to not resist an evil person. He told the disciples one thing, but he did something completely different when He was faced with the thieves in the temple. John 2:13-17 says, “Now the Passover of the Jews was at hand, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem. And He found in the temple those who sold oxen and sheep and doves, and the money changers doing business. When He had made a whip of cords, He drove them all out of the temple, with the sheep and the oxen, and poured out the changers’ money and overturned the tables. And He said to those who sold doves, ‘Take these things away! Do not make My Father’s house a house of merchandise!’ Then His disciples remembered that it was written, ‘Zeal for Your house has eaten Me up.’” The passive mentality that the church has comes from what we have been taught. Most pulpits in today’s church predominantly teach to turn the other cheek and not resist an evil person. But taking Scripture out of context is a dangerous matter and one that leaves the Body of Christ far from being transformed in the image of Christ. When Jesus ran into thieves, He did not turn the other cheek. When we run into thieves, murderers or those intent on thwarting His Kingdom purposes, we need to look to the Spirit for direction. We need to know the principles in both the gospels and the book of Revelation. Sometimes we will be called to turn the other cheek and not resist evil. But other times, we need to be in a very different place. We need to turn to the Word to understand it and the Spirit for direction in it. I trust we are determined to live as Jesus lived and walk as He walked.


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