Wednesday, March 29, 2023

Creating liberating content

HomeRelationshipsFamilyBullying and turning the...

Bullying and turning the other cheek

Christian cartoonist, the Rev. Chris Yambar of Youngstown, Ohio, who spends a lot of time around parents and kids, says he has been approached on more than one occasion about how Christian kids should handle bullying.

“Kids and parents think Jesus’ phrase ‘turn the other cheek’ means kids can’t protect themselves against bullies. That’s not true,” says Yambar.

The editors of “The Quest Study Bible” note the verse, found in Matthew 5:39, is actually referring to being insulted by someone.  “To be struck on the cheek was symbolic of being personally insulted, not physically attacked,” they say.

A more apt Bible verse might actually be found in Exodus 22:2-3. The verse speaks about what can be done if someone breaks into your home, but also touches upon the idea of protecting yourself, your family and your possessions. God does indeed give permission to defend yourself against anyone trying to harm you.

Even so, the Bible also speaks of loving your enemy and showing love to those who hate you. This leaves us as Christians to consider the fact there must be a balancing point between these verses.

Christian martial arts instructor, Tyler Branigan, owner of NOVA Martial Arts Academy in Gaylord, Mich., believes the Bible is telling us to always go for the non-violent method, but when all else fails, the victim may need to defend himself long enough to stay safe.

Branigan teaches classes on self defense twice a week for young children and families. During these he says occasionally kids, but usually parents, will ask him about dealing with bullies. He tells them kids should be aware of their surroundings, avoid bullies if they see them, walk with friends when possible and show confidence when they are walking alone. Sometimes bullies will pay attention to body language.

“Violence is always the last resort,” notes Branigan. “Only when other options have failed should the victim use violence. And the objective of that is to simply break away from the bully and get help immediately.”

Physical bullying is not like sparring or being in a competition where two people agree to a contest. It is an unfair, potentially dangerous attack on another person who does not want to fight.

Fellow Christian instructor, Matt Morgan of AuSable Martial Arts Academy in Grayling, Mich., agrees with Branigan.

While most people think martial arts is about fighting, Morgan says says it is even more so about building confidence, so there is no need to fight. 

“With kids’ classes I’ll have have a child lead the exercises, lead the stretching. Why? Because that’s building leadership skills up. If I can get these kids up in front of people at an early age, getting in front of their peers, getting in front of their parents, do you know how much confidence that’s going to build in them down the road?”

“Communication is a really big element to me also. Words can totally change the dynamics of a situation,” says Morgan.

Morgan believes the vast majority of the times problems can be solved through communication and he teaches this in his classes. He even gives examples to his classes from his own life as a police officer where he calmed down angry people.

Knowing how to defend yourself may actually be the best way of turning the other cheek.

- A word from our sponsors -


Most Popular

More from Author

COMICS (End of year 2020)

The following comic strips are provided free for our readers by...

COMICS (10-24-2020)

The following comic strips are provided free for our readers by...

B2E celebrates with readers Aug. 29

LEWISTON — Beginning to End Christian Bookstore will be celebrating Independent...

Comics (07-29-2020)

The following comic strips are provided free for our readers by...

- A word from our sponsors -


THE JOURNEY: A Music Special From Andrea Bocelli Extends Theatrical Run Due to Overwhelming Demand

LOS ANGELES (March 28, 2023) — Due to overwhelming audience demand, Fathom Events has extended the original four-day theatrical run for THE JOURNEY: A Music Special from Andrea Bocelli, thanks to significant ticketing pre-sale numbers leading up to the release. The film will now remain in select...

Ask Kathy: Why am I not experiencing more joy in my life?

We asked Kathy Martin, a well known counselor with a thriving practice in Palm Beach County, if she would address questions brought to her by readers of One Christian Voice. And she agreed! Here is the first question we posed to her and her solution.

EU Nationals Want to Preserve Christian Culture—Poll

A recent survey found that the majority of British and EU nationals want to preserve Europe's Christian roots.

“Science does not contradict Christianity” Says NASA Astronaut

A former NASA astronaut believes that the study of science and nature is in accordance to with what's written in the Bible.

Podcasting Priest Sees Hope in the Future of Christianity in America

Fr. Mike Schmitz believes that reports of Christianity is in a decline in America could be "good news" for the church.

Priest Who Went to Hell Shares What He Saw

A priest from Michigan claims he died and went to hell in 2016, saying he wouldn't wish it on his worst enemy.

Christians are Comfortable Resolving Conflict at Home —Barna

Barna Group released a study which found that Christians say they are comfortable resolving conflict at home.

More Afghan Christians Are Accessing the Bible Online

Online Afghan ministries report an increase in the number of Christians within Afghanistan who access virtual Bible study.

US Christian Group Celebrates 10,000th Traveler to Israel

Passages celebrated a milestone of bringing a total of 10,000 Christian students to Israel within seven years.

Week of Prayer 2023 in Europe Focuses on Joy

European evangelical churches are invited to a special weeklong time of prayer from January 8-15, 2023.

Lauren Daigle Donates Almost $700K to Charities

Christian music artist Lauren Daigle wrapped up the holiday season by donating $681,000 to community charities.

Bethlehem Welcomes Christmas Tourists After Pandemic Ebb

After two years, business is back in Bethlehem as thousands of tourists arrive in the city for the Christmas season.