Not-So-Sweet Revenge

Bible Study 1

Bible Study 1 (Photo credit: DrGBB)

Has anyone ever made you mad before? I know, I know–it’s a ridiculous question. It’s hard to go for very long without meeting someone that you just want to punch in the face. It’s human nature, I guess. Someone hurts us, physically or emotionally, and we just want to strike back. Give them a taste of their own medicine, right? In our eyes, it seems fair–it’s justice. But then there’s a question we have to ask: Is it our place to exact judgement on these people?

The Bible has an answer for that.

Do not say, “I’ll do to him as he has done to me; I’ll pay that man back for what he did.” (Proverbs 24:29, NIV)

This verse is just about as straightforward as you can get, but it really goes against the way we feel. When a wrong is done to us, we feel a need to retaliate. But that’s the devil whispering in your ear. He wants you to return evil for evil. Even though it seems okay, doesn’t it just bring us down to their level? Romans 12:14 says this:

Bless those who persecute you. Don’t curse them; pray that God will bless them.

When I’m really mad at someone, reading this verse makes me think, “So they’re just going to get away with it? That’s not fair!” But they don’t get away with it. Remember, is it our place to judge others? No, because it’s God’s.

Dear friends, never take revenge. Leave that to the righteous anger of God. For the Scriptures say, “I will take revenge; I will pay them back,” says the Lord. Instead, “If your enemies our hungry, feed them. If they are thirsty, give them something to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals of shame on their heads.” Don’t let evil conquer you, but conquer evil by doing good. (Romans 12:19-21, NLT)

We don’t need to take revenge, because it’s not our job. Unless they repent, when people do the wrong thing (to you or otherwise), they’ll get what they deserve.

Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows. Whoever sows to please their flesh, from the flesh will reap destruction; whoever sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life. (Galatians 6:7-8, NIV)

We don’t know if people will “reap what they sow” during their lifetime or the day they see God face to face. But if we do see them facing difficulties, it’s easy to feel happy; however, Proverbs 24:17-18 says this:

Do not gloat when your enemy falls; when he stumbles, do not let your heart rejoice, or the Lord will see and disapprove and turn His wrath away from him.

None of this is easy to do. But it is the right thing to do, and, if you have Jesus living in your heart, you’ll soon realize that it’s what you want to do.


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