“We are alive; as punished, and yet not killed; as sorrowful, yet always rejoicing; as poor, yet making many rich; as having nothing, and yet possessing everything.” (2 Corinthians 6:9-10)
The Christian life is a real battle. In John 10:10, Jesus warned us of “the thief the devil who comes only to steal, to kill and to destroy.” The devil does not like anything good and would work as hard as he can to frustrate the children of light. This is exactly what St. Paul is talking about in today’s first reading. We are attacked on all sides but not destroyed.
A lot of the misfortunes we face in life are merely physical manifestations of real spiritual battles but too often, instead of increasing our prayer life, we end up picking wrong fights with people around us. As St. Paul told us, “we wrestle not against flesh and blood but against principalities and powers” (Ephesians 6:12).
In our Gospel passage, Jesus admonishes us not to engage in physical battles. He says “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 one who is evil. But if anyone strikes you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also…” (Matthew 5:38-39).
Jesus is not asking us simply to allow people to override us, Jesus wants us to fight in the right place. The real enemy is not the one who struck you in one cheek, it is the one who comes to steal, to kill and destroy. (John 10:10)
I once read a commentary on Job. Basically, the author was saying that one of the strategies the devil employs when he wants to get into our skin is to take the physical things around us which we cherish so much. Do not lose your calm when these things happen, just know that you are more than a conqueror.
Go into your prayer room again, wipe off the dust from your prayer books, open that clean sparking bible again, spend more time in God’s presence, and drop whatever vices, bad habits, or sinful deeds in your life. Get serious with God, let Him fight for you. Stop wasting time, fighting people.
Let us pray: Lord Jesus, I commend myself to you. Amen.
Bible Study: 2nd Corinthians 6:1-10, Psalm 98 and Matthew 5:38-42).