See that no one renders evil for evil to anyone, but always pursue what is good both for yourselves and for all. Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. Do not quench the Spirit.
The Apostle Paul in these passages, lays out for us some foundational principles of Christian behavior. As we read these passages, it’s important that we take note they are relevant only for the Christian. Because what Paul is asking of us is only possible through the guidance and inspiration of the Holy Spirit and not through human will power. As Christians, we do not seek to retaliate or get even if someone wrongs us. We have to understand this world will attack followers of Christ, why? Because the world is in rebellion against God, therefore it not only hates God, but also the people of God. As followers of Christ, we must be in expectation of such attacks, knowing we live in a fallen world. And it’s through submission to the Holy Spirit’s guidance and the study of God’s word, taking on the full armor of God, that we prepare ourselves. This also means, because of our love for Jesus, we pursue what is good and honest with forgiveness in our hearts for others. Cultivating an attitude of giving thanksgiving for everything we receive.
For by doing so it helps us to understand the love of God and communicate with the Holy Spirit who is there with us through all trials and tribulation. Also, it helps us to understand all good things come from the Lord! This helps us to remember all the gifts we have been given because of our faith in Christ. It helps us remember what we have been saved from because of God’s grace given so freely to us. And lastly because of God’s transforming work within us, it helps us to keep our eyes firmly fixed on Jesus. As much as we can, we are to seek the good of others, concern ourselves with the salvation of the lost and give thanks and praise to God the Father through Christ Jesus our Lord. This doesn’t mean to let evil flourish, but to forgive those who have hurt us, keeping their salvation in mind as we seek to be led by the Spirit of God. Moreover, it means to have a heart for the lost and an understanding that they are like we once were. That is, they are lost in a dark and dying world. Dead in their trespasses and sins, they are unaware of the light of Christ and the love of God.