‘Don’t repay evil for evil. Don’t retaliate.’ 1 Peter 3:9 NLT
It’s been said that the depth of your hurt determines the width of your response. So it’s likely that when someone hurts you, your first impulse will be to get even. But any momentary satisfaction you experience will invariably be followed by a lingering sense of regret. Why is that? Because you know you’ve failed God by retaliating.
We retaliate in two ways:
(1) ‘Tit for tat.’ Before you make your offender suffer, carefully consider these words: ‘Never pay back evil with more evil. Do things in such a way that everyone can see you are honourable. Do all that you can to live in peace with everyone… never take revenge. Leave that to…God. For the Scriptures say, “I will take revenge; I will pay them back,” says the Lord.’ (Romans 12:17–19 NLT)
(2) By involving others. Not only do you not have the right to strike back, you don’t have the right to tear down your offender in front of others. Joseph not only refused to punish his brothers for their betrayal, he refused to publish the details to those who worked in his courts. Why? Because he saw God’s hand at work, and realised that what he’d suffered at his brothers’ hands had made him the man he was.
Peter writes: ‘Don’t repay evil for evil. Don’t retaliate with insults when people insult you. Instead, pay them back with a blessing. That is what God has called you to do, and He will grant you His blessing.’ (1 Peter 3:9 NLT) So if you want to walk in the blessing of God today, take the high road.
SoulFood: Ps 23, Jn 10:7–18
The Word for Today is authored by Bob and Debby Gass and published under licence from UCB International Copyright 2023