Scripture Sunday is … simply a post I’ll make every Sunday that involves something about Scripture! Some examples would be a Sunday post could talk about: how reading the Bible helped me handle a particular situation in my life; or what is a favorite Bible verse on a particular subject and why I like it; or what section of Scripture relates to / or is mentioned in one of my novels.
Today’s Scripture Topic: Retaliation & Revenge
Retaliation: (verb, used without an object) To return like for like, especially evil for evil
Revenge: (verb, used with object) To exact punishment or expiation for a wrong on behalf of, especially in a resentful or vindictive spirit.
Have you ever wanted to retaliate for someone doing you wrong? Particularly when that wrong involved inflicting emotional injury? I’m pretty sure all of us have at one point or another in our lives. The question is, did you retaliate, or did you leave the matter in God’s hands?
I had a situation in my life where I most definitely wanted to retaliate—for several wrongs done to one of my loved ones. Flipping through my Bible one night and coming across Scripture that “spoke to me” changed my mind.
For months, I tried dealing with the issue by telling my loved one to handle the situation by doing this, or doing that, or not doing this, or not doing that. Then, right at the boiling point, right at the moment when I couldn’t take it any more, right on the very day when I seriously considered picking up the phone and talking to a lawyer about suing multiple people—that’s when it happened.
That’s when I opened my Women’s Daily Devotional Bible to check out the reading assigned for that day, and guess what was the subject matter? You got it: retaliation. I about fell off my chair with that “coincidence.”
The Scripture referred to was 1 Samuel 24: 1-7, and I kept reading and found that 1 Samuel 24:12 spoke to me the most.
The section of the devotional that spoke to me the most was when the writer asked how will you respond when a wrong is done to you (or a loved one)? The writer asked will you leave matters in God’s hands, “or will you take a bit of vengeance here and a slice of repayment there?” She asked if a person would be satisfied to wait for God to make things right, and on His schedule, not ours.
So, I had a long discussion with family members about these verses, and I decided to not retaliate, not get revenge, to let the Lord avenge the wrongs done to my loved one.
Shortly after that day, discussions were had with the parties involved that did not involve any retaliation, or revenge, or any spite. They simply involved “just the facts” and suggestions on how to stop any future wrongs from being done.
Guess what? The loved one has had zero problems since that discussion took place. What does that tell me? Read your Bible, do what God asks you to do in it, which is don’t retaliate. He will eventually set things right.
Questions For Readers:
What is a similar situation you went through that it would have been helpful to have this verse handy, or a situation you handled that you already used this verse? What is your favorite Scripture related to this subject? Do you like the NIV translation of this verse or a different translation, and why?
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