The Violence of Love

Sunday – The Gospels from the Lectionary
Matthew 5:38-48

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There are familiar sayings of Jesus here that have been misunderstood. In no way does Jesus want you to be someone else’s doormat. The refusal to co-operate with violence brings forth a “violence” of love. Let us see this in the familiar “turning the other cheek.”

The first blow comes to the right check. In the ancient world, this could not be a blow of attack, since this would only be done by the person’s right hand; the left hand was used only for cleaning oneself. The punch with the right hand would hit the person’s left cheek, not the right one. The scenario here is of one receiving a blow of insult with the back of the right hand onto the right cheek of the other. Turning the other cheek means this: “Your first attempt to degrade me by this blow has failed; would you like to try it again?” The unrighteous anger of another is turned back upon that other.

Reinterpret your life’s experience according to fresh ways of understanding Jesus’ teaching about transforming non-violence into the shaking violence of love.

The Reading for Today
Text     Audio

Bible Breaths
What are these?
Struck on cheek, turning other v. 39
I will go the extra mile v. 41
Loving well my enemies v. 44
Being whole as You are whole v. 48

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for the version for children and families.

This is the Eighth Week in Epiphany, Year A.
See “Solar and Sacred Seasons” in the menu above.
Sundays are dedicated to the Gospels from
The Revised Common Lectionary.
Year A is dedicated to the Gospel of Luke.

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