Acts 25 Lesson

False accusations

Have you ever been falsely accused?

At some point in our lives, most of us have been accused of something that we did not do.

When this happens, how should we react? How does the Bible teach us to respond?

In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus said:

“You have heard that it was said, ‘An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth.’ But I say to you, do not resist an evil person; but whoever slaps you on your right cheek, turn the other to him also.  If anyone wants to sue you and take your shirt, let him have your coat also.” – Mathew 5:38-40.

In Paul’s letter to the Romans, he wrote:

“Never pay back evil for evil to anyone. Respect what is right in the sight of all men.  If possible, so far as it depends on you, be at peace with all men.  Never take your own revenge, beloved, but leave room for the wrath of God, for it is written, ‘Vengeance is Mine, I will repay,’ says the Lord.” – Romans 12:17-19.

These two scriptures tell us what to do when we are falsely accused:

  1. Turn the other cheek.
  2. Leave revenge to God.

This can feel like a tall order when others have hurt us, or brought pain to those that we love. We must understand that God knows what He is doing, and we need to trust His wisdom.

The Prophet Isaiah had this to say about God’s wisdom:

“For My thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways My ways,” declares the Lord. “For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways, and My thoughts than your thoughts.” – Isaiah 55:8-9.

When we are falsely accused, the world will tell us to take a stand and stick up for ourselves. But is that what Paul did? Is that what Jesus did?

Paul was almost stoned to death twice. In Acts 25 he finds himself on trial for his life after already serving two years in prison for something he did not do. And yet, we do not find Paul seeking vengeance. Instead, we see him following the example of Jesus by turning the other cheek.

When Jesus was about to be crucified, He said:

“Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.” – Luke 23:34.

When somebody wrongs us, our first instinct may be to defend ourselves and fight back. But that would not agree with the scriptures that we have just read.

We cannot control what other people say about us, but we can control how we react to it. When we are falsely accused, we have a great opportunity to bring glory to God by following the examples of Paul and Jesus. Instead of returning evil with evil, we can obey the scriptures by:

  1. Turning the other cheek.
  2. Leaving vengeance to God.

This may seem different or unusual, and that is ok. As God’s people, we are called to be different. God’s light shines through us, and it shines brightest during the darkest times in our lives, if we remain obedient to Him. Consider the following two scriptures:

  • “The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.” – John 1:5.

  • “But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for God’s own possession, so that you may proclaim the excellencies of Him who has called you out of darkness into His marvelous light;  for you once were not a people, but now you are the people of God; you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy.” – 1 Peter 2:9-10.

The next time that we are falsely accused, we can choose to give a godly response, and not a worldly one. We can follow the example of Paul and Jesus by turning the other cheek and leaving vengeance to God. When we do this, we will bring glory to God and He will be pleased with us for the love we show Him by obeying His commands.

We will conclude today’s lesson with a quote from the Gospel of John:

“If you love Me, you will keep My commandments.” – John 14:15.

Thank you for studying with us today!  Please join us again tomorrow as we look at Acts 26.  The title for our forum discussion will be, “Living with purpose.” May God’s blessings be upon you until then.  Amen

Comments

Michael

To pass the buck. LOL

Reply
Pat Dermody
Michael

Yes, and he had lots of precedents. Many times when we are doing something unethical it is comforting to find a “partner in crime”. Eve sought to have Adam join her in her transgression. Pontius Pilate gave Jesus over to the crowd and “washed his hands “of it.

Reply