If your enemy is hungry, give him something to eat

(Proverbs 25.21)

Not everything that we have been taught holds water.
We may have even been educated in values that go against Christianity!
For example…
We have always been taught
that in life meekness does not pay
that we should not let people take advantage of us
that we should react violently if necessary,
if someone tries to take away our rights
that we should always return a punch for a punch and a blow for a blow.
An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth.
This is what being a real man or a real woman is all about!

Jesus Christ had a different value system ingrained in Him.
People made fun of him when He told them:
“if anyone hits you on the right cheek, offer him the other as well”,
“if anyone would have your tunic, let him have your cloak as well”,
“if anyone orders you to go one mile, go two miles with him”,
“do good to those who hate you”,
“do not ask for your property back from the man who robs you”,
“if you lend something, don’t expect anything in return”.

People mocked him when he said and lived these words.
And perhaps interiorly we too feel the same.

And yet He was right and our educational system is wrong.

He came into the world to convince everyone
that God is merciful and compassionate.
He came to show everyone
how much God respects us.
And He showed this respect to the extent
that He did not resist to the evil we did to him.

When we killed his only Son, Jesus Christ,
how did He reply?
By continuing to love us.

His answer to our sins
was and still is
love and compassion.
He remained devoted to us.
This crazy love of God became flesh in Jesus Christ.
When he was innocently arrested,
spat on,
He did not resist to the evil done to him
but he continued loving
even excusing.

He paid evil with good,
He did not say ‘I will get back to you one day’
like a lamb taken to the slaughter
He did not open his mouth
He let them kill him.
Even more
He asked his Father to forgive them.
There is something awesome in Jesus Christ.
He kept respecting and revering
even those who basically trod on him underfoot.

We have never employed this kind of mercy towards others.
No one has ever exercised this kind of mercy toward us.

The truth is that this is the only Love that rose from the death.
This the only love
that wins over death.
This is the only love
that goes beyond our human calculations.
This is the only Love that remains.

Some may argue that this kind of love is impossible.
And this is true.
But the Christian is called for the impossible.
Christianity is not an ideal for the saints
but life for every person,
something that makes us live better
and happier.

He had no form
or charm to attract us,
no beauty to win our hearts;
he was despised, the lowest of men,
a man of sorrows, familiar with suffering,
one from whom, as it were, we averted our gaze,
despised, for whom we had no regard.
Yet ours were the sufferings he was bearing,
ours the sorrows he was carrying,
while we thought of him as someone being punished
and struck with affliction by God;
whereas he was being wounded for our rebellions,
crushed because of our guilt…

(Isaiah 53, 2-5)

(c) Fr. Pius Sammut, OCD. Permission is hereby granted for any non-commercial use, provided that the content is unaltered from its original state, if this copyright notice is included.