A Catholic Monthly Magazine

Monday 18 June

1 Kings 21:1-16. Psalm 5, Matthew 5: 38-42

A new kind of justice

Today’s gospel teaching would have got a reaction. Justice was measured out as reward or revenge according to the situation. Wasn’t Jesus getting the two mixed up? What was all this about inviting a second smack on the face? I think Jesus was probably using this imagery to remind people how important it was to defuse anger. He was not talking about a weak response, but something much stronger than aggression. War is easy. Peace is hard won. It requires our strength, effort and wisdom. We may even be able to add love to that list.

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