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Ask the Pastor

† Theological musings and answers to selected questions by a confessional Lutheran pastor.

04 October 2008

Stealing and Giving

Q: I am trying to find the verse that refers to someone stealing from you and you, then, offering them even more. Does this sound familiar?

A: During the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus commented on both retaliation and true generosity: “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 the one who is evil. But if anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also. And if anyone would sue you and take your tunic, let him have your cloak as well. And if anyone forces you to go one mile, go with him two miles. Give to the one who begs from you, and do not refuse the one who would borrow from you. (Matthew 5:38-42)”

In summary, Christians are not supposed to retaliate. Neither are we to keep score, either of wrongs against us or of the good we do.

For more, please see Christians and Lawsuits and Eyes, Teeth, and Lives.

Send email to Ask the Pastor.

Walter Snyder is the pastor of Holy Cross Lutheran Church, Emma, Missouri and coauthor of the book What Do Lutherans Believe.

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Newspaper column #562:1


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