Tag Archives: vengeance

What more could be said?

12 I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.

Serve God with Spiritual Gifts

For I say, through the grace given to me, to everyone who is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think soberly, as God has dealt to each one a measure of faith. For as we have many members in one body, but all the members do not have the same function, so we, being many, are one body in Christ, and individually members of one another. Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, let us use them: if prophecy, let us prophesy in proportion to our faith; or ministry, let us use it in our ministering; he who teaches, in teaching; he who exhorts, in exhortation; he who gives, with liberality; he who leads, with diligence; he who shows mercy, with cheerfulness.

Behave Like a Christian

Let love be without hypocrisy. Abhor what is evil. Cling to what is good. 10 Be kindly affectionate to one another with brotherly love, in honor giving preference to one another; 11 not lagging in diligence, fervent in spirit, serving the Lord; 12 rejoicing in hope, patient in tribulation, continuing steadfastly in prayer; 13 distributing to the needs of the saints, given to hospitality.

14 Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. 15 Rejoice with those who rejoice, and weep with those who weep. 16 Be of the same mind toward one another. Do not set your mind on high things, but associate with the humble. Do not be wise in your own opinion.

17 Repay no one evil for evil. Have regard for good things in the sight of all men. 18 If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men. 19 Beloved, do not avenge yourselves, but rather give place to wrath; for it is written, “Vengeance is Mine, I will repay,” says the Lord. 20 Therefore

“If your enemy is hungry, feed him;
If he is thirsty, give him a drink;
For in so doing you will heap coals of fire on his head.”

21 Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.

Well said. Help us to do this, Lord.

Justice according to God…not us

Pr. 28:5:  “Evil men do not understand justice, but those who seek the Lord understand all.”

In John 7:24, after Jesus was confronted by people complaining against Him, He said, “Do not judge according to appearance, but judge with righteous judgment.”

It can be so easy for us to judge people and circumstances by what we see on the outside.  However, when we are seekers of the Lord, and are consistently gaining more understanding of Him and His will, we find that judgment does not come quite so easily.

The wisdom from the Lord helps us to understand justice according to God’s will and not our own.

We want revenge, but God says vengeance is His.  We want to strike back, but God says turn the other cheek.  We want to be found more faithful, but God says humble yourself and do not think more highly of yourself than you ought.  We believe in choice, but the Lord says to plead the cause of those unable to speak for themselves.

Justice, according to us, is self-seeking and certainly fickle.  One day we’re in a kind, peaceful, forgiving mood.  The next day we might find ourselves mad at the world.  If we seek justice according to our thoughts, emotions, feelings, and personal beliefs, disaster will certainly ensue.  How many wars, divorces, and divisions could have been avoided if personal justice wasn’t sought?

When we become more like Jesus, seeking the will of the Father, then we understand justice according to the One who is true.  God’s ways are not our ways, but plans are for good, and He has proven Himself through the ages to be faithful and sovereign.

If we are to understand justice, we should seek to understand justice from the viewpoint of our Father in heaven.  We can dig through His word and understand what true justice is.  When we seek the Lord we can understand all.

Looking inward,

jamie

Can you hold your peace?

Pr. 11:12:  “He who is devoid of wisdom despises his neighbor, but a man of understanding holds his peace.”

Understanding comes from knowledge of the Holy One.  If Christ rules in our hearts, we have an understanding that those without Him do not possess.  That understanding gives us the power, courage, strength, and direction to not only hold our peace, but to love one another.

Jesus did not come into this world to condemn the world, but to save it.  Why then, do we condemn and despise one another?

Often, we probably find ourselves despising or nit-picking those closest to us.  We must stop that, and offering grace, hold our peace.  Of those who are truly against us, Jesus says, “Love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you.”  Mt. 5:44.  This charge from Jesus goes directly against what our culture tells us to do.  Our culture tells us to fight back at all times, stand up for ourselves, fight for justice, and never back down.

What else does Jesus say?  “Whoever slaps you on your right cheek, turn the other to him also.  If anyone wants to sue you and take away your tunic, let him have your cloak also.  And whoever compels you to go one mile, go with him two.”  Mt. 5:39-21.  “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God.”  Mt. 5:9.  “Whatever you want men to do to you, do also to them.”  Mt. 7:12.  “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength, and with all your mind, and love your neighbor as yourself.”  Luke 10:27.

I could go on and on.  Jesus had a lot to say about this subject.  We are taught to let our light shine before men, that they may see our good works and glorify our Father in heaven.  Unlike our culture’s ideas, which encourage us to glorify ourselves, backing down, making peace, and loving our neighbor glorifies the Lord.  Trusting in God means we take Him at His word when He says “Do not avenge yourselves, but rather give place to wrath; for it is written, “Vengeance is Mine, I will repay,” says the Lord.  Therefore, “If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him a drink; for in so doing you will heap coals of fire on his head.”  Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.”  Ro. 13:19-21

There are battles that should be fought.  We are taught to defend the defenseless, the orphaned, the widows.  We are taught to stand up for the Lord and for our salvation.  We are entrusted by God to care for our and protect our families.  However, if we watch the life of Jesus, we can see the example of One who truly gave place to love, compassion, forgiveness, and mercy.  Even though He had many opportunities and reason enough, He did not avenge Himself.  He understands all we go through, and can offer help in our time of need.

Ro. 13:10 says, “Love does no harm to a neighbor.”  Let’s offer our neighbors a harmless environment today, whether that be the ones living within the walls of our home, the ones down the street, the ones at work, or the ones across the map.  Don’t be devoid of wisdom, but with understanding of the Holy One, trust that He will do what He said.

Fondly,

jamie

God will keep the evil from pouring forth

Pr. 15:28:  “The heart of the righteous studies how to answer, but the mouth of the wicked pours forth evil.”

How do we wisely study how to answer, instead of allowing our mouths to pour forth our immediate thoughts, risking allowing evil to come forth?  Frankly, we must be full of the Word and the Spirit of the Living God.  When we are living according to our flesh, we fight in the flesh and winning the battle over the tongue will most certainly be out of reach.

When we live and walk according to the Holy Spirit; however, we have the calm assurance within to know that pausing to study our answer is the strongest thing we can do.  Studying how to answer takes humility, patience, trust in, and reliance on the Lord.  Did God not say that vengeance is His?  He said His name is our strong tower and when we run to it, we are safe.

Deliverance:  is that from us, or is that from the Lord?  Just like in the victory over Goliath, God is the One who brought it, through David’s faith.  The small boy who faced the giant was as unable to defeat the him as all the other well-prepared soldiers.  No matter how we’ve prepared our horses and chariots (or words) for battle, the victory belongs to the Lord.

My grandfather always told my mom, who then told me, “don’t make big decisions when you are emotional.”  I think that advice was very similar to this verse, as words can do much damage.  Pausing to study our answers does not make us weak; it reminds us that our strength comes from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth.  When faced with a situation where we have a choice to speak immediately or wait, we must ask God to help us trust in Him and the truth of His word.  If we pause and pray, God will guide us.  He is always faithful.  Trusting in Him will always bring the ultimate victory!

Studying in faith,

jamie