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I'm Gonna Get You

Vindictive (def) - having or showing a strong or unreasoning desire for revenge. Some of the many plots in tv shows and movies today deal with the revenge subject. When a story shows someone getting victimized unjustly I find myself cheering on the person who is "getting even." They are not heroes. They are vindictive. The Bible speaks to a vindictive heart in this way. Romans 12:14 Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse.15 Rejoice with those who rejoice, and weep with those who weep.16 Be of the same mind toward one another; do not be haughty in mind, but associate with the lowly. Do not be wise in your own estimation.17 Never pay back evil for evil to anyone. Respect what is right in the sight of all men.18 If possible, so far as it depends on you, be at peace with all men.19 Never take your own revenge, beloved, but leave room for the wrath of God, for it is written, “Vengeance is Mine, I will repay,” says the Lord.20 “But if your enemy is hungry, feed him, and if he is thirsty, give him a drink; for in so doing you will heap burning coals on his head.”21 Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.

How can we serve Jesus as peacemakers when we are trying to "pay back" anyone and everyone who has wronged us. It cannot be done and a point of spiritual maturity is realizing that any of the world's wisdom is nothing more than evil in all cases. Remember, we are IN the world not OF the world. I have a friend of mine who is a born again believer and He "loves" the Lord, just ask him. But when he is confronted by anyone at all, whether a strong or weak confrontation, He wants to fight them....physically!! Of course, after he says that he admits he would probably never do that. But even the thought is off track and wrong. I asked him one time "Do you really mean you would lay hands on that person and try to hurt them?" When I asked him it embarrassed him and he reaized his thoughts were in the wrong place and his reaction was not Christ-like and He backed off.

Most people who are vindictive usually were raised around people who wanted to fight to "get their rights" and this way of life is difficult to leave behind. But we must leave it behind. The apostle Paul knew that many who believed in Jesus would need to distance themselves from this "self love" and immerse themselves in God's love. It is self love because it always makes sure no one has anything on me. Self love at it's worst. It is difficult to acquire a Godly humility when we have that much self love. I know, I know, you are probably thinking "Well now you are going extreme on this Christian stuff." And yes, it is extreme, as all of God's ways are. But we must admit that allowing ourselves to be changed does require some change. I have to laugh on that last line and admit to myself that I am not perfectly willing to change in all areas of my life. But I must try, and God's Word is my avenue to change.

This morning I saw that some "evil person" drove through a crowd of people and killed 5 and injured countless more, It sickens me to see how far evil will take us if we let it. Satan is about ruining lives, ruining marriages, ruining churches, and ruining hopes and dreams. Jesus still remains our only hope for life-change and here is what Jesus says about "getting even." Matthew 5:38 “You have heard that it was said, ‘An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth.’39 But I say to you, do not resist an evil person; but whoever slaps you on your right cheek, turn the other to him also.40 If anyone wants to sue you and take your shirt, let him have your coat also.41 Whoever forces you to go one mile, go with him two.42 Give to him who asks of you, and do not turn away from him who wants to borrow from you. Jesus isn't going to win many fights with that attitude, but Jesus is about winning "the war!" Think "Big Picture!" His death on the cross and His defeat of death, hell, and the grave are further indicators that Jesus is about much bigger things in life than we can see or understand. Jesus continues on in Matthew 5: 43-48 where he says 43 “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ 44 But I say to you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, 45 so that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven; for He causes His sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. 46 For if you love those who love you, what reward do you have? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? 47 If you greet only your brothers, what more are you doing than others? Do not even the Gentiles do the same? 48 Therefore you are to be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect.

So if we are looking for a Godly way to handle things then go no further than the above scriptures and do what Jesus would do. A vindictive spirit is a spirit of evil and we need to stay away from it. Not every "Christian" will do what God's Word says, but we can, and we must. Jesus said in Matthew 15:12 Then the disciples *came and *said to Him, “Do You know that the Pharisees were offended when they heard this statement?”13 But He answered and said, “Every plant which My heavenly Father did not plant shall be uprooted.14 Let them alone; they are blind guides of the blind. And if a blind man guides a blind man, both will fall into a pit.” Follow the one who is not "blind" but sees all.

The Pilgrimage Continues...

David Warren

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