Turn the Other Cheek

We have this verse in scripture, Matthew 5:37-48 “But let your communication be, yea, yea; nay, nay: for whatsoever is more than these cometh of evil.  Ye have heard that it hath been said, an eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth:  But I say unto you, that ye resist not evil: but whosoever shall smite thee on thy right cheek, turn to him the other also.  And if any man will sue thee at the law, and take away thy coat, let him have [thy] cloak also.  And whosoever shall compel thee to go a mile, go with him twain.  Give to him that asketh thee, and from him that would borrow of thee turn not thou away.  Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt love thy neighbour, and hate thine enemy.  But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you; That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust.  For if ye love them which love you, what reward have ye? Do not even the publicans the same?  And if ye salute your brethren only, what do ye more [than others]? Do not even the publicans so?  Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.”

We must always be living at our “Very Best” even when those you are interacting with are behaving at much worse than their “Best.”  It is that ole, “Turn the other cheek,” or as Jesus cried out in Luke 23:34 “Then said Jesus, Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do. And they parted his raiment, and cast lots.”  There are numerous verses in scripture admonishing us to help our enemy, to return his straying livestock, to help him home with his heavy burdens, to give him a cup of cool water, to feed him if he is hungry, to show him by your Christian Lifestyle, thus proving that there is a much better way to live, and by your righteous acts, will win him, and he will experience this, “And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:7.

1 Peter 2:19-25 “For this [is] thankworthy, if a man for conscience toward God endure grief, suffering wrongfully.  For what glory [is it], if, when ye be buffeted for your faults, ye shall take it patiently? But if, when ye do well, and suffer [for it], ye take it patiently, this [is] acceptable with God.  For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps:  Who did no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth:  who, when he was reviled, reviled not again; when he suffered, he threatened not; but committed [himself] to him that judgeth righteously:  who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed.  For ye were as sheep going astray; but are now returned unto the Shepherd and Bishop of your souls.”  Now to repeat the hard part, “For what glory [is it], if, when ye be buffeted for your faults, ye shall take it patiently? But if, when ye do well, and suffer [for it], ye take it patiently, this [is] acceptable with God.”  It is so easy for us when we are “Wrongfully Accused” to lash out, to try to Justify ourselves, to blame others, to claim that it “was not my fault, I was a victim.”  Peter is admonishing us to “Take it on the chin,” to “Turn the other cheek,” to bare it like a Redeemed Saint, and a representative of Jesus Christ.  Let Heaven record your humility, to take this wrong “Patiently,” to “Walk the Walk and to Talk the Talk.” This is so very easy to preach this to everybody else, but so very hard when we have to eat “Humble Pie,” and are entreated unjustly.

Proverbs 25:21-22 “If thine enemy be hungry, give him bread to eat; and if he be thirsty, give him water to drink:  for thou shalt heap coals of fire upon his head, and the LORD shall reward thee.”  Remember that you may well be the only “Representative or Ambassador of Heaven” that they may ever meet, so how well do we represent Jesus.  We find it uncomfortable when judged for our failings, but we rise up so very quickly in “righteous indignation” against our ever being inferred to or hinted about, or unjustly accused of, or reprimanded for something that we are innocent of, so how do we really act when the chips are down, when we are held up unjustly for judgement?

Isaiah 53:1-6 “Who hath believed our report? And to whom is the arm of the LORD revealed?  For he shall grow up before him as a tender plant, and as a root out of a dry ground: he hath no form nor comeliness; and when we shall see him, [there is] no beauty that we should desire him.  He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were [our] faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not.  Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted.  But he [was] wounded for our transgressions, [he was] bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace [was] upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.  All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned everyone to his own way; and the LORD hath laid on him the iniquity of us all.”  So how well do we “Turn the other cheek?” Mark 15:3 “And the chief priests accused him of many things: but he answered nothing.”  Let us follow Jesus’ example, take it on the chin, or take Peter’s council, “But if, when ye do well, and suffer [for it], ye take it patiently,” thus showing that you have “Christ living and dwelling within.”