In a comment to my Martin Luther King post my blog buddy Ric lead to back to something he wrote about King. His post included 1 Peter 3:9. I think during this week of remembrance of MLK 1 Peter 3:8-15 contains guidance we all can learn from.
1 Peter 3:8-15 (New International Version)
8Finally, all of you, live in harmony with one another; be sympathetic, love as brothers, be compassionate and humble. 9Do not repay evil with evil or insult with insult, but with blessing, because to this you were called so that you may inherit a blessing.
“Whoever would love life
and see good days
must keep his tongue from evil
and his lips from deceitful speech.
11He must turn from evil and do good;
he must seek peace and pursue it.
12For the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous
and his ears are attentive to their prayer,
but the face of the Lord is against those who do evil.”
13Who is going to harm you if you are eager to do good? 14But even if you should suffer for what is right, you are blessed. “Do not fear what they fear; do not be frightened. 15But in your hearts set apart Christ as Lord.
God has called mankind to act towards one another with love and compassion. To repay evil, and insult, not in kind, but with blessing. The more you are able to do this, the closer you come to acting as Jesus did when he was being tormented, the more you will be blessed.
You should not speak with evil, or deceitful intent. You should seek peace, and turn from evil.
Verse 13, “Who is going to harm you if you are eager to do good?” sounds naive. However men like Martin Luther King prove the wisdom of this guidance.
MLK was able to inspire millions because he lived by these words. He was a revolutionary, like Jesus. He fueled his revolution with love, even as his enemies used hate. Love will always overcome hate, when given a chance.
The more the Christ Follower can act with love towards those who act against them in hate, the greater God’s blessing will be, the less that have to fear of God’s judgement.
How is this working for you?
It is a good thing I am not a Christ Follower or, based on my actions in the past, I would have a great deal to fear of God’s judgement. 🙂
When someone insults me, or gives me the finger, I am afraid my reaction is not one of love. 🙂 As I have become older I have worked very hard at becoming less confrontational than I was most of the life. I still do have a ways to go. Maybe if I had another 100 years to work on it I could finally learn the lessons taught by the way Martin Luther King, and Jesus, live their lives by. The guidance in 1 Peter 3.