Overcome Evil With Good
Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good.
Here is a summary of our whole duty in reference to all injury and harm done to us: Every thought of wrath, resentment, bitterness, and vengeance, of doing any harm to our worst enemy is forbidden. It is opposed to love. Every thought of kindness, forgiveness, patience and love, is to take its place in our hearts. OVERCOME EVIL WITH GOOD! If the very best of sinners were honest with themselves, all would be convinced of the utter impossibility of any sinner being justified in God’s sight based on anything other than the imputed righteousness of Christ.
This shows us the substance of that love which believers have in some degree but not yet in perfection.
Now, if we know that we cannot attain this goal in this life, why even try to strive for it?
Why should we put out so much effort in these areas?
The answer is BECAUSE THE LOVE OF GOD HAS BEEN SHED ABROAD IN OUR HEARTS BY THE HOLY SPIRIT, and His love begets love. His love took us from the depths of sin and active idolatry and made us full partakers, joint-heirs, of the whole inheritance of grace based solely upon the imputed righteousness of Christ. His love saved us and keeps us and will bring us to final glory, even though our personal character and conduct falls way short of what it should and will be. And so we do expect that inheritance of grace. We rejoice in Christ, and that joy comes from the confidence of receiving the full inheritance of eternal life and final glory. But we expect all this, not based on our obedience (no confidence in the flesh), but based on the merits of Christ obedience and death. All this works together to cause us to desire to please God. We know that it is pleasing to God that we strive to bring our character and conduct into conformity to Christ.