The Extra Mile

Matthew 5:41 And whosoever shall compel thee to go a mile, go with him twain.
              Historians conclude that the distance of a Roman mile was the measure of one thousand paces of five feet for each pace coming to about one hundred and forty yards shorter than the mile that is practiced today.  During the times when Jesus spoke these words there were stationed on major roads (and especially within the cities) government workers who would at any time command an individual to assist the government with various tasks such as to help deliver an official document or to transport goods.  An individual’s personal belongings could be demanded by the government authority to be used in the process of assisting the Roman government such as horses and personal boats to transport for the King’s business.  This rule over the citizens was very frustrating to the Jews somewhat preventing them from having a sense of ownership and freedom.  Understanding now a little of the background of what life was like in those days it is clearly understood for the umpteenth time that Jesus did not oppose the government nor was He attempting to form a resistance against the powers to be, as He was falsely accused of. 
 So in His sermon on the mount Jesus instructed His followers to go the second mile.  Why did He tell His followers to go the second mile?  Does He not understand that His people are busy?  Does He believe that we have all the time in the world to go two miles instead of one?  Is He not considerate at all of our time?  God’s people do good to remember that He has great reasons for everything that He instructs us to do.  In the day that we live in one can very easily see that not too many people are going the extra mile.  Not many volunteer for overtime, but complain.  Not many volunteer to clean up or to do something extra or out of the ordinary for the benefit of others.  Here are the reasons that Christians should go the extra mile.  Number one because of the adventure of going the extra mile.  Going the extra mile causes you to get out of the norm and to see and meet people and to have great experiences that would have never taken place unless you go the extra mile.  The second reason to go the extra mile is because it is an expression of willingness or surrender to God, an individual, or a cause.  We do get quite fastened or glued to our schedules and the normalcies of life; this can also create a quite combative view or attitude of participating in anything that is outside of our own reasoning.  Being willing to go the extra mile helps us to have an attitude of willingness and readiness when an opportunity presents itself for us to go the extra mile.  And the last reason to go the extra mile is because of love.  It is because of our Saviour’s love for us that He gave to us salvation and this wonderful life that we now possess.  He gives to us every day.  The Christian should go the extra mile for others because He loves others and has experienced the great love of God going the extra mile for him.
~Pastor Kaiser
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