Monday, October 26, 2015

Thoughts on Romans 12; Avenge Not Yourselves

Can I just say, it is a concerning moment when you can't remember your own blog title? And then once you remember your blog title, you get to your blog and go to start typing a post... and can't remember your series title for a minute either. I actually don't know if I should be writing tonight. Haha!

In my post yesterday, I shared Matthew 5:39, which tells us, "But I say to you, Do not resist the one who is evil. But if anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also."

This goes right along with the final verses of Romans 12, verses 19-21. "Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave it to the wrath of God, for it is written, “Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord.” To the contrary, “if your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink; for by so doing you will heap burning coals on his head.” Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good."

A beautiful picture of this was given to us by Jesus at the Mount of Olives, as the crowd came to bear Him to what would eventually be His crucifixion as the payment of our sins. "And when those who were around him saw what would follow, they said, “Lord, shall we strike with the sword?” And one of them struck the servant of the high priest and cut off his right ear. But Jesus said, “No more of this!” And he touched his ear and healed him."

Christ became man so that He could join us in all our pains, all our sorrows, all our temptations, and we can be sure that in Him we have the strongest sympathy. But as God Himself, He did not succumb to the temptations of life, which is how His precious blood had the power to be the redemption for us.

Christ definitely could have left the injured man to suffer. After all, it was his choice to be wrapped up in this business, even though Christ had done nothing that they could find fault with. He did not deserve a miracle. But Christ repayed evil with good, nevertheless.

And we are called to do the same. It is hard. We want to repay others in the same coin that we have been given. But when we think that all we deserve is hell, and what we have been given is the free gift of heaven with Christ instead, can we not joyfully surrender to His will that all should be shown like mercy? "For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us." (Romans 8:18)

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"May the Lord, the God of your fathers... bless you!" Deuteronomy 1:11