New Hope Notes
Power Of The Second Mile
Pastor Wayne Cordeiro
Power Of The Second Mile
Pastor Wayne Cordeiro
October 5 & 6, 2019
Aloha, New Hope!
Let’s read about the Power Of The Second Mile in Matthew 5:38-41 NIV: “You have heard that it was said, ‘Eye for eye, and tooth for tooth.’ 39 But I tell you, do not resist an evil person. If anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to them the other cheek also. 40 And if anyone wants to sue you and take your shirt, hand over your coat as well. 41 If anyone forces you to go one mile, go with them two miles.”
How many of you feel good when someone forces you to do something? I don’t think any of you do. It’s pretty tough, isn’t it? But the Bible says if someone forces you to carry his bag one mile, carry it two miles! Anybody do that lately? It’s pretty tough!
In the days of Jesus, the people were under Roman occupation and the military (centurions) were there to keep order. The people hated the centurions because they essentially taxed them twice—to Rome, as well as, to the Jewish Temple. Israel was the land bridge between Africa and Europe for traders of ivory, gold, spices, and fabrics.
Rome built roads and trade routes through the land of Israel; and if you (an Israelite) used their road, you had to pay a toll. The people in Israel hated the Romans because they felt they were prisoners in their own homes! One of the things that Rome did was to start a postal system: They carried the mail by foot or horse to the next town. If a Roman person were carrying a backpack, he could force you to leave what you’re doing and carry his backpack 1,000 steps, or a Roman mile!
After a mile—it was actually two miles--because you had to walk back! On the thousandth step, the Jewish people probably threw the pack down and said, “There done!” And Jesus says, “No. I want you to follow Me,” the greatest second miler in history!
All of the Bible heroes were second milers:
1. Our Redemption Happened In The Second Mile
Jesus came to this earth and suffered and died for you and me; and redemption happened in the second mile!
There was one time when a Christian man was told to carry a Roman person’s bag. The Christian man was very helpful and joyful and noticed that the strap was broken and he said, “Sir, give me just a second. I have some leather. Let me fix your bag for you.” The Roman scratches his head thinking who is this guy. The Christian says, “Come to the house and have dinner with us.” A thousand steps go by and he keeps having a conversation with the centurion, until the centurion tells him to stop and says, “I’ll take it from here.” The Christian told him to stop at a nearby town where a carpenter was speaking, “His name is Jesus, and He changed my life. He can change your life too.” Miracles happen in the second mile! People’s eternity hangs in the balance in the second mile.
His name was Tim. He was in the hospital and a nurse who attended New Hope Hilo called me and asked if I could come and talk to him because he had tried to kill himself. I went to the hospital and he looked at me, I said, “I’m Wayne Cordeiro, I came to pray for you. I heard you tried to take your life.” He said, “Yes, that’s my choice, not yours.” I said, “Can we talk about it?” He said, “No.” So I prayed a quick prayer and left. Three months later, the same nurse called me, and said that Tim was back in the hospital. He tried to kill himself by cutting his wrist and was in the hospital again. And I went back to the hospital and sat in his room and said, “Tim, you have to quit this, you’re failing, you’re not doing it right.” He said, “I want to die.” I said, “I know, but you can’t keep doing this. Let me know if we can talk.” So I prayed for him and left.
True story—three months later, I get a call again. This time it was a shotgun wound to his head. I went to his room and he had bandages around his head, and I said, “Tim, you’re going to have to take some lessons.” He said, “I just want to die.” I said, “Then you should. Get rid of your life. Instead of throwing it away to the devil, I want you to throw it away to Jesus. Give up your life to Jesus Christ. Obviously, you can’t steward it or handle it. Die to Tim and give your life to Jesus Christ. Whatever He says, you do, because you are no longer your own. You will die but not physically. You will die to yourself. You don’t have to shoot yourself to do it; give your life to Jesus Christ today.” Finally, he understood and I led him to Christ that day.
He started to come to New Hope in Hilo and about four-five years later married a wonderful Japanese girl and went to Japan to be a missionary.
I look back on it and think, miracles happen in the second mile. What would happen if we don’t go the second mile because miracles and redemption happen in the second mile? The Lord wants you to follow Him—the greatest second miler in history! God is saying, “I want you to carry it two miles. That’s when things start to happen, in the second mile—when we die to self!
2. Miracles Happen In The Second Mile
The following story about forgiveness was on the news: A lady opens the door to her apartment and goes in; a man is walking towards her. She’s in her police uniform with a gun and pulls her gun at the intruder in her apartment, and says, “Show me your hand. Show me your hand.” But he keeps coming towards her, so she shoots him twice. Now she’s on trial for murder.
Brandt Jean, the younger brother of man shot by Amber Guyger, ex-Dallas police officer, will testify. Watch how Brandt goes the second mile, and see what happens. [News clip: “I can say for myself, I forgive you. I know if you go to God and ask Him, He will forgive you…again, I’m speaking for myself…I love you just like anyone else. I wasn’t going to say this in front of my family or anyone, but I don’t want you to go to jail. I want the best for you because I believe that’s what they [God and my brother] would want you to do. And the best thing would be to give your life to Christ. Again, I love you and I don’t wish anything bad for you. I don’t know if it’s possible, but (looking at the Judge) can I give her a hug, please (sobs)?” The Judge walked away into her chamber and returned less than a minute later with a small book in her hand. We quickly realize it was a Bible. The Judge tells him to read John 3:16 for the next month. Amber whispers something into the Judge’s ear that prompts the Judge to say, “Ma’am, it’s not because I’m good, it’s because I believe in Christ. You haven’t done so much that you can’t be forgiven.” The Judge continues, “You did something bad in a moment of time, but what you do now matters.”]
You see, the young man went the second mile, and when he did, he took a chance; it was a little tough on him, but he continued and took the bag a second mile! That’s when the miracle happened: the Judge was emboldened to go back into her chamber to get her Bible and minister to Amber—her eternity was hanging in the balance and miracles happened in the second mile!
A lot of us are first-mile Christians. But redemption happened in the Second Mile when Jesus came to this earth, suffered, and died for you and me; forgiveness happened in the Second Mile, and the heart of God is seen best in the Second Mile. It’s only when we go the second mile that changes take place. Miracles and change happen in the second mile!
The H-1 traffic is pretty bad! But if you’re a Second Mile Christian, you will never get caught in a traffic jam because rarely do you see a traffic jam in the second mile! There’s so many ways we can serve in the second mile. We’re ready to leave after the thousandth step, but the Lord is saying go the second mile—that’s where the miracles happen!
I want to encourage each of us in this season to be a people of the Second Mile. One of the things I notice a lot around here is our servants: the tech people, Levites, people who come early and stay late—they are learning to be a people of the second mile—volunteers serving!
Jesus is the greatest second miler ever! When he bought your salvation and mine, it was a long trip from heaven to earth and He said, “It’s okay. The long trip was worth it because you are valuable!” If Jesus was like that, we should do the same. Some of you are at the thousandth step and are about to bail out! May I encourage you to follow Jesus because right around the corner: