“You have heard that it was said, ‘An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth.’ But I say to you, do not resist an evil person; but whoever slaps you on your right cheek, turn the other to him also."

- Matthew 5:38-39

Radical Christianity

“…turn the other cheek?” The immediate response is “it’s impossible!”

Jesus was quoting from one of the books of law, Leviticus in the Old Testament: “If a man takes the life of any human being, he shall surely be put to death. The one who takes the life of an animal shall make it good, life for life. If a man injures his neighbor, just as he has done, so it shall be done to him: fracture for fracture, eye for eye, tooth for tooth; just as he has injured a man, so it shall be inflicted on him.” This is called the law of exact retribution.

So, imagine how He shocked the people listening were when Jesus followed up with, “But I say to you, do not resist an evil person, but whoever slaps you on the right cheek, turn the other one also!” Aren’t we taught to defend ourselves and stand our ground? Well, Jesus isn’t talking about running away like a coward. He’s actually telling us to stand our ground, but to do so with love, not seeking retribution. Turn the other cheek. It was and still is a radical idea to our natural instincts. Turning the other cheek is the most courageous thing anyone can possibly do and it takes supernatural strength from God to do it.

So I ask you, if you claim to be a follower of Christ, are you willing to practice radical Christianity? Christ calls all of His followers to live this way. Impossible? Yes, within our own strength. Yet nothing is impossible with God. Take the challenge of radical Christianity and let the supernatural power of Christ shine through you, even in the face of evil.

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