Kingdom Ethics – Walking in the Way of Jesus, the Master Teacher
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. said, “Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.” This principle is based in the scriptures of the holy bible for in Matthew 5:14-16, Jesus Christ said to His followers, “you are the light of the world, a city that is set on a hill cannot be hid. Neither do men light a candle and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick. and it giveth light unto all that are in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.” In Luke 6:27-28, He told His followers, “But I say to you who hear, Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who abuse you.” These actions may sound impossible and may appear to be unnecessarily burdensome. However, they are Godly principles that represent and Godly Character.
In Luke 6:27, Jesus teaches about ethical behavior in times of conflict for Christians/Christ Followers. We are not to react or respond the way nonbelievers do. We are not to handle our conflicts the way nonbelievers do. Kingdom Ethics require us to smother love with hate, bless the wishers of our ill will, and pray for our abusers. In this, the light of Jesus shines brightly through us and as a result, others will glorify God for our uncommon behavior because light has the remarkable ability and power to drown out and dispel darkness.
Dr. Martin Luther King understood this as he fought for and championed the cause of equal treatment of all of humanity and peace for all, not just those he liked or could affectionately identify with. It is these Godly principles in which his efforts and actions were rooted as he championed the cause of humanity. As I pen this blog message, many around the world are remembering the day that Martin Luther King’s life was cut down so early in his life half a century ago. As we remember this loss, we also remember what Dr. King stood for as it continues to permeate and shape our culture and how we perceive social justice for all humanity especially those whose voices are devalued because of race, gender, age and socioeconomic status.
Hatred is the byproduct of anger and fear and can even spring forth out one’s sense of being injured. However, the Apostle Paul condemned hatred as one of the works of the flesh (Galatians 5:20). We, who are Christians and as such, Christ Followers, must guard against fulfilling the works of the flesh, one of which is hatred. But rather, we must live in and walk in the Spirit. In fact, Galatians 5:15 tells us to walk in the spirit, because when we do this, we will not fulfill the lusts of the flesh. The way to stop fulfilling the lust of the flesh is to walk in the spirit; that’s the key. It is hard to walk in the wrong direction when you’re walking in the right direction. Walking in the ways of Christ through employing His principle of Kingdom Ethnics is not without its challenges. However, we must stay focused on the big picture and remember the greater good, which stretches far beyond our comfort zone. The Light and Love of God have the power and ability to transform hearts and lives. If that were not the case, then all Christians would never have become Christians, as it is the Light and Love of God that indeed regenerated and transformed us; and without the Light and Love of God, all of humanity would be lost without a hope.
~Dr. DeShonda Bailey, Lead Pastor