Do not be conquered by evil but conquer evil with good. Romans 12:21 NABRE
Paul is writing to the followers of Jesus in Rome ahead of a visit he is planning. The letter is about sin and salvation, the work of the triune God to raise the family of Adam from the bondage of sin. The letter speaks of God’s grace and love redeeming a world undeserving of His mercy. Chapter twelve has Paul sharing a pastoral message about love. As followers of Jesus it is critically important how we treat others, those inside the community and those who do not know Jesus. First, don’t live for worldly glory, rather live for the will of God. Paul teaches followers are all the Body of Christ, we each have our role and no matter what we think we must fulfill our role. Paul then writes about love and peace, let love be sincere, think of the other with mutual affection and honor, do not let your guard down in this regard. We should rejoice in hope, endure in affliction and persevere in prayer. Paul addresses evil, he exhorts us not to let evil win. Evil wins when we enact revenge, it wins when we are angry or hate another, it wins when we react to persecution with hate. In order to succeed over evil we must always respond with love and honor for the other. To conquer evil we feed our enemy when they are hungry and give them a drink when they are thirsty. We are to conquer evil with love, there is no other way.
Paul challenges us to conquer evil by doing good. It is not enough to do good when we feel good or feel everything is going well. We must do good when around us others are doing evil to stop us, we must do good when the enemy is trying to hurt us, we must always do good. Do good even if you are alone in doing the good. As a follower of Jesus, this is not optional.
Can you love someone who tried to hurt you? Can you assist someone who is against you?It is not enough to do good when we feel good or feel everything is going well. We must do good when around us others are doing evil to stop us, we must do good when the enemy is trying to hurt us, we must always do good. Click To Tweet
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