Stand Alone Sermons

The Third Way of Jesus

June 11, 2023 / Toney Salva

Toney Salva, the Executive Director of The CEA (a regional church planting organization committed to establishing new churches throughout the Pacific Northwest), teaches from Matthew 5:33-41 about how Jesus lived a life that avoided the typical fight or cower responses when confronted by challenging people, but chose a third way. And as followers of Jesus we should strive to live out this third way as well.


  • In this section of scripture, Jesus is showing us what living like him actually looks like. He’s contrasting the conventional wisdom, the Law, back in that day and helping people see whats wrong with the Law.
  • This scripture covers four scenarios: the truth, a slap, a shirt, and a walk. By telling these stories, Jesus is calling anyone who wants to be a follower to be honest. He’s calling them to creative, radical ways of being different, and counter-cultural, in conflict.
  • Our words and our actions represent Jesus. Jesus wants us to be people who respond to hurtful people in ways that people don’t expect. In ways that causes people to think twice and ask ‘why are they so different from everyone else?’
  • Jesus didn’t talk about this third way as hypothetical, but as someone who lived it.


  • Reflect: who is it that’s most likely to say something or do something that you find demeaning or hurtful? Who is it that you’re stuck in patterns of either attack or avoidance and running away?
  • Remember: while we are thinking of someone right now, someone might be thinking of you. We are just as capable as insulting and injuring other people. Repent and confess together about those you have wronged. Seek forgiveness and reconciliation.
  • Invite your group into a real-life example you are facing. Pray and process about how to embody Jesus’ way, the third way, in this situation. Hold one another accountable with grace and mercy.