The Christian Adventure......

Proverbs 27:17

Proverbs 27:17

Wednesday, April 15, 2020

The Berean - Romans 12:17-20 NASB

The Berean - Romans 12:17-20 NASB

(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."

Romans 13:8-10

(8) Owe nothing to anyone except to love one another; for he who loves his neighbor has fulfilled {the} law. (9) For this, "YOU SHALL NOT COMMIT ADULTERY, YOU SHALL NOT MURDER, YOU SHALL NOT STEAL, YOU SHALL NOT COVET, and if there is any other commandment, it is summed up in this saying, "YOU SHALL LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOURSELF."" (10) Love does no wrong to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfillment of {the} law.

1 Peter 3:8-9

(8) To sum up, all of you be harmonious, sympathetic, brotherly, kindhearted, and humble in spirit; (9) not returning evil for evil or insult for insult, but giving a blessing instead; for you were called for the very purpose that you might inherit a blessing.
New American Standard Bible


Paul's counsel to the congregation in Rome (Romans 12:17-20; 13:8-10) is clearly in line with what Jesus taught. He insists that we must never allow vindictiveness, the desire to get even with someone for a suffered wrong, to drive us.

In the same vein, Peter taught that we must not repay evil with evil, insult with insult, but we must bless (I Peter 3:8-9). Why are we called to react this way? Because if we want to be in God's Kingdom, it can only happen without the spirit of murder dwelling in us, and those evil retaliations are the spirit of murder. We are not to take vengeance because God has retained that responsibility to Himself. Is that not the way it should be? Only He fully knows and understands every facet of the circumstances and can judge perfectly. By the way, Paul addresses the issue of retaliation four times in Romans 12, which begins by stating that we are to be living sacrifices and not to conform to this world's ways.

The picture should be clear. Somebody must be willing to do this if there will be peace. Jesus set the example: He, refusing to strike back, died for the entire world. Christ's non-retaliatory remedy is ultimately for everybody's benefit, but until He returns, the standards He set can be met and lived only by those who, like Jesus, have the Spirit of God, are living by faith, and are enabled to keep God's ways by God Himself.

— John W. Ritenbaugh

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