"Turn the Other Cheek" in Your Difficult Relationships

Christian Relationship Help: "Turn the Other Cheek" in Your Difficult RelationshipsBy Karla Downing

This Christian relationship help will enable you to apply the biblical teaching to "turn the other cheek" in your difficult relationships. Some interpret this part of Jesus' teaching to condone passivity toward someone who would take advantage of you, but is that what it really means?
Matthew 5:38-48 is part of the Sermon on the Mount given by Jesus. It includes the following exhortations (NIV):
  • If someone strikes you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also.

  • If someone wants to sue you and take your tunic, let him have your cloak as well.

  • If someone forces you to go one mile, go with him two miles.

  • Give to the one who asks you, and do not turn away the one who wants to borrow from you.

  • Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you.
What do these verses mean you should do in your relationships?
  • Some view this teaching to justify complete non-resistance to mistreatment, but complete non-resistance doesn't fit with other passages in the Bible and the outcome does not produce healthy relationships.

  • It supports unselfish giving which is a theme in the Beatitudes. Other Scriptures tell us to give out of choice instead of compulsion (2 Corinthians 9:7). Taken together, we are to choose to be generous.

  • It illustrates how the new covenant in Christ is based on grace and love compared to the old covenant based on law. We can offer grace; but remember that God offers grace and still holds people accountable for sin, has boundaries, and stands for truth.

  • It teaches that retaliation is wrong and that we should choose our reaction to any type of situation, even mistreatment, by using self-control.

  • There may be times when it is best to be wronged, but it is only when it draws someone to God and promotes the gospel. Everything you do should be an example of righteousness or rightness. All of these examples had significance culturally. By choosing to love, the disciples and early Christians acted differently than those that responded out of retaliation.

  • It doesn't condone physical abuse in relationships. The "turn the other cheek" example had significance culturally. It was considered to be a grievous insult. Jesus was saying that we don't return an insult with an insult; instead, we are to treat the person like we would want to be treated. Again, this has to do with whether we retaliate or respond with self-control.

  • It does not prevent you from saying no to mistreatment in your relationships when it is in the best interest of the relationship.
This Christian relationship help enables you to turn the other cheek in your difficult relationships by helping you to understand what Jesus was illustrating with his examples. The emphasis was on controlling your response to those that would mistreat you rather than retaliating.
If you need more practical tips and Biblical truths to help you change your relationships, get my FREE "15-Day Relationship Challenge" designed to give you back the power over your life. Just click here: http://www.free15daychallenge.com Karla Downing is an author, speaker, licensed marriage and family therapist, and Bible study teacher. Karla's passion is to help people find freedom in Christ in the midst of their difficult relationships and circumstances through Biblical truths and practical tools. Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Karla_Downing  Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/6669838