- Watch Video Here: Session 13 – Resist Not Evil
Jesus’ words are radical and revolutionary. His instructions on how to live are completely opposite to what most think and do. Yet, these truths are the very keys to unlock a life of godliness in the midst of an evil world.
Matthew 5:33-37 – An oath is a solemn, formal calling upon God to witness that one sincerely intends to do what he says.
Numbers 30:2; Ecclesiastes 5:2-5 – According to the Law, if you made an oath or a vow unto God, you were not to break it. You were bound by your oath. You were under no obligation to make a vow. It would be better not to vow than to vow and not pay.
Jesus said, do not swear at all! Let your yea be yea, and let your nay be nay.
James 4:13-17 – We cannot control the future. Do not make promises that may be impossible for you to keep. Live today! Oaths deceive us into putting off until tomorrow obligations of today.
James 5:12 – Oaths can put you into condemnation.
Eye for Eye
Matthew 5:38 and 39 – At first glance, resist not evil seems to be confusing, illogical, and contradictory to God’s Word. However, it is simple, logical, and life changing.
When someone attacks you with the intent of harming you, it seems as if he or she is trying to push you away, but in reality the evil pulls us in like a giant magnet.
Resist Not Evil
“Smite thee on thy right cheek” In the oriental culture, to touch the cheek of another man was a very great insult. The essence of what is being said here is that if someone insults us, we are not to respond in kind. Let him do it again.
The normal course of action is if someone insults us, we insult him. When we do, then we are pulled in and reduced to his evil level.
Getting people to resist evil is how the devil encourages evil in the world to proliferate. Evil multiplies as a forest fire does — rapidly and out of control.
Matthew 5:40 – The example given is the coat and cloak, not our life, home, livelihood, etc. If we go to law to argue over our coat, we will become a part of the evil.
We live in an evil world and, if our concern is justice rather than godliness, we will be drowned in evil.
1 Peter 2:13-17 – The ordinances of man are not always right, just, or equitable. As long as the ordinances of man are not causing us to break the commandments of God, we should submit.
1 Peter 2:21-23 – The example given us to follow is Christ’s response to evil. What were his thoughts when he was hanging on the tree? “Father forgive them for they know not what they do.”
Romans 12:17-21 – The pure-hearted do not respond to evil with evil.
Matthew 5:41 and 42 – Roman soldiers could make people carry their belongings for a mile.
Love Thy Neighbor
Matthew 5:43-48 – Publicans were the worst in their society, and even they figured out how to care for their own.
Believers loving believers is as easy as it gets. What about the so-called unlovable?
Love is not a technique. It is to be the way we are, the fabric of our lives! Our love is to be single, not with hypocrisy, not with partiality.
Our love of people originates from God and not from the people themselves. I love you because God first loved me. God loved us; therefore, we love each other. I do not love you because you love me! My loving you has nothing to do with what you do or do not do. It does have everything to do with having a pure heart! The heart of God is to love everybody.
It takes a lot of trust and confidence in God to believe that His way of life is better than the way we have lived on our own! His way is far superior!
We are too important to get caught up in the trivia of evil. If we endeavor to go toe to toe with evil, we are going to lose. We are not equipped! We are equipped to love! What we lose in responding to evil is our peaceful relationship with God and purity of heart!
Ephesians 5:1 and 2 – Imitators of God — love
Luke 6:27-36 – The way to resist not evil is to walk in love.
Love Takes Courage
Luke 6:37 and 38 – The reward now and in the future is abundant. Ephesians 3:14-21