“But I say to you that listen, Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who abuse you. If anyone strikes you on the cheek, offer the other also; and from anyone who takes away your coat do not withhold even your shirt. Give to everyone who begs from you; and if anyone takes away your goods, do not ask for them again. Do to others as you would have them do to you. “If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners love those who love them. If you do good to those who do good to you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners do the same. If you lend to those from whom you hope to receive, what credit is that to you? Even sinners lend to sinners, to receive as much again. But love your enemies, do good, and lend, expecting nothing in return. Your reward will be great, and you will be children of the Most High; for he is kind to the ungrateful and the wicked. Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful. “Do not judge, and you will not be judged; do not condemn, and you will not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven; give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together, running over, will be put into your lap; for the measure you give will be the measure you get back.”
Food For Thought:
When I read this passage of Scripture, I think of the Golden Rule; “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” While many of the Old Testament laws are no longer applicable in our modern society, this one stands the test of time. I remember learning this passage of Scripture when I was a young child from my parents. My parents were always saying, “Treat others the way that you would like to be treated.” This is what is at the heart of the Christian message ― be good to others, not because they are good to you but because this is how you yourself would want to be treated.
Gracious God, we thank you for the gift of your son, Jesus Christ, who taught us to treat others with kindness, compassion and respect. Remind us of this call upon our lives and help guide us to be your love-bearers in a world that desperately needs it. In your sacred name we pray, Amen.