Summary: Jesus was/is Extra - Ordinary and 'The Greatest Walker wants us to Walk that extra - mile, but when? Listen!
Jesus walked 1000's of miles for His ministry of love, now He is asking His disciples to walk the extra mile if compelled to go a mile. Why? It comes from the Sermon on the Mount context, "If a soldier demands that you carry his gear for a mile, carry it two miles." (Matthew 5:41) He is speaking the Roman rule had over the Jewish nation. The Roman soldiers were empowered by the Roman law to take advantage of the Jewish citizens to carry their miltary gear at least one mile!
The Jews hated that law because it was their enemy because their self esteem was damaged. But Jesus was asking them to be different, SURPRISE! What? Why are doing such a thing? Jesus was asking them to Love and pray for their enemies. To turn the cheek if slapped in the face! Wow, why so different?
Jesus was different Himself as He showed them How He would go the second mile in His Life. When He was in the desert for 40 days, He showed His life. Turning the water into wine because He wanted them to be happy. Feeding the 5,000 was going the extra mile. The story of the Good Samaritan is about going the second mile. The Father who has a prodigal son went the extra mile. Going to the cross and dying is an example of going the second mile.
jJesus is asking His disciples to be like Him --- to go the extra mile. . . in loving one another, Loving God and loving yourself. It is asking His followers to be different, so that they will see the love of Jesus in you being displayed. A preacher was speaking about the topic, "What is a Christian?" His answer, He/She is different than the average human being. How? She/He has two things in their lives. 1.) He is a Child of God. 2.) He/She beieves and follows the commands of Jesus.
Jesus wanted His followers to be different. Someone said, "Winners do not do different things, they do things differently." As Christians in our work, find ways to go the extra mile, so that they will see the love of Jesus livng in you. Have you a family member offend you, that you could go the extra mile and give forgiveness and see the love of Jesus in you? Maybe it takes extra time from you, . . . maybe extra money from your pocket.
In the Book of Acts, we read of Philip traveling in the desert on dusty and on a very hot afternoon, and met the Ethopian Eunoch, and gave him the gospel message of Jesus and baptized him there. Hence the beginning of the Church in Ethiopia, going the Second Mile for Jesus.
CONCLUSION: "One small act of going the extra-mile may trigger a chain reaction with us ending up doing something memorable of lasting value, for Jesus like Philip did! Amen and amen.
Presented By Larry L. Vollink, retired chaplain/pastor, Cedar Springs, Michigan; lawrenceV@comcast.net (616) 65-4129.