Monday, April 7, 2008

How to get a sore left cheek

but if ony smyte thee in the riyt cheke,
schewe to him also the tothir;
Matthew 5:39 WycliffeNT

"we ought not to be content till we have utterly crushed out of ourselves the least desire, as far as our own personal feeling is concerned, to take any kind of revenge whatsoever. We are to efface ourselves utterly, we are to turn the other cheek. That means, of course, that we decline to show in any way that we know who has done the wrong, and that we are at pains to look for opportunity of kindness to the person who has wronged us"
Charles Gore,
The Sermon on the Mount, (1896) p. 89

Being wronged is a real test. For a Christian, there really is only one option, as Gore puts it:
"any other course of conduct at all is more or less morally wrong, because no social duty compels us to assert our just cause" (p.90)

In secular terms, this would be regarded as "sucking it up": taking a deep breath, getting on with things.
We all do this, and most of the time it is not easy. There are other times where it can be a real challenge, and here is the test.

It's all a process of deepening faith, to take these from word to reality.

Blessed are the meek:
for they shall inherit the earth.

Matthew 5:5 RV

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