“Never pay back evil with more evil. Do things in such a way that everyone can see you are honorable. Do all that you can to live in peace with everyone.”
Romans 12:17-18 NLT.
Retaliation is not the answer! There is an old saying that states "when you throw dirt you lose ground". There are going to be times in life when you are mistreated. Rather than becoming vengeful and act in accordance with your sinful nature, submit to the Holy Spirit and act like Jesus. “He did not retaliate when he was insulted, nor threaten revenge when he suffered. He left his case in the hands of God, who always judges fairly.” I Peter 2:23 NLT.
In the greatest sermon ever preached (the Sermon On The Mount - Matthew chapters 5-7) Jesus said “God blesses those who work for peace, for they will be called the children of God.” Matthew 5:9 NLT. Living at peace with some people can be sorely trying. However, we must strive to do so. God calls us to this. We don't have to agree with their ways or even like the characteristics of the individual, but, we must act in love toward them as a fellow human being. Being bitter and hostile only corrupts our lives. Hebrews 12:15 says "Look after each other so that none of you fails to receive the grace of God. Watch out that no poisonous root of bitterness grows up to trouble you, corrupting many.” NLT.
Remember how often and how badly you have mistreated God. He has been good to all of us in spite of our sin. Let's treat others with that same grace.
“Get rid of all bitterness, rage, anger, harsh words, and slander, as well as all types of evil behavior. Instead, be kind to each other, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God through Christ has forgiven you.”
Ephesians 4:31-32 NLT.
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Rev. Curtis Norris