S94P6 – Dark seasons of the soul: vengeance

Rom. 12:19-21

Do not take revenge, my dear friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” says the Lord. On the contrary: “If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head.”  Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.

He should have known better.  Actually, he certainly had known better, but this kind of anger was new to him.  He prided himself on his work ethic and moral standards, but that only placed a target on his back.  Most of his colleagues were not believers, and many of them responded to the presence of the Spirit with disdain and disrespect.  So strong was the spiritual warfare in that place that false rumors were whispered about him, and these rumors resulted in disciplinary action for him.  His good name was now wrongly blemished, and that arose in him an unholy fire.  Left unchecked, it would bring him to further blemish his name himself with a vengeful act as evil as what he had suffered. 

Worldly vengeance will disguise itself as equity.  How many times have we heard someone say that another person deserves what he or she gets because of what he or she has done?  This is a sentiment that is just a little crooked yet close enough to being straight that we can fool ourselves into believing it.  What God tells us is that evil certainly must be put right, but we do not do that by causing evil ourselves.  What the world sees as equity or balance is really just the compounding of evil.  There is a vengeance that is correct, but only God can determine when and how to exact that fairly.  Besides, we do not need to avenge ourselves when we have the one true God waiting in the wings to take that position for us.

When it comes to our defense, there are two options.  We can allow God to defend us, or we can try to do the work ourselves.  Only a short and simple analysis of logic will indicate clearly that the better option is the defense mounted by God.  The brand of vengeance that comes from our flesh is tainted by anger and pain.  It is no better than the evil we try to avenge.  Vengeance is God’s purview, and we must trust him to set things right.  Our job is to combat evil with goodness and kindness, with love and peace.  Father, help us to let go of our grudges and our pain, and to trust You to set right the evil which comes against us.