My Sisters and Brothers in Christ surely you must know how destructive a cycle of revenge is: The Bible is clear about that and so is the message Jesus gave on how to avoid or stop this human violent characteristic.
Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave it to the wrath of God, for it is written, “Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord.”what Jesus said about violence
I am not referring to self defense for even the Disciples carried swords. The sense here is forgive an offense and set it aside – or forget it.
How Destructive is this Violent Cycle?
Look to history, yet, wars of annihilation and genocide are still taking place even now. Tribes, nations, countries, races, ￼religions even families. Feuds, revolutions, terrorism and hate fuel these cycles. Jesus taught a better way:
“You have heard that it was said, ‘An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth.’ But I say to you, Do not resist the one who is evil. But if anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also.
Our GOD does not need things not even sacrifices for sin since Jesus paid the price for inequity for all time. So why do we worship, make offerings, confess sin and strive to do good? Yes these please GOD but the processes are for our benefit. By doing these things we are reminded that we are part of GOD’S creation and the definitions of “Good” and “Evil” derived from GOD’S standards – as revealed in The Bible.
But God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
GOD will not love us less or love us more based on our actions or omissions. The things we do that GOD enjoys is for our benefit: a better life, blessings, rejecting evil desiring to learn more each day about GOD and the ways of doing things. ALL FOR OUR BENEFIT.
When we accept that we are sinners and that Jesus paid the ultimate price for sin by dying on the cross GOD sees us covered by the righteousness of Jesus. We are Saved.
And he said to him, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and _with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the great and first And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. On these two commandments depend all the Law and the Prophets.”
SONG:Open the Eyes of My Heart by Michael W. Smith, lyrics in
For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart.Read about Elijah, especially note 1 Kings 19:12 (ESV)
Note: all images pixabay com unless stated otherwise.
GOD as The Creator is the cause for our existence. The Book of Genesis is a beautiful description of the process: whether you believe it literally, allegorically or metaphorical I will not debate that here. Whatever we are GOD has equipped us with the ability to learn, share knowledge, and understand more about existence and the cosmos collectively. Humans also make use of what is learned in the form of applied science – technology. Unfortunately because we have free will (as did the Fallen Angles) we can and do make bad choices. The Bible teaches we have a selfish and sinful nature that only can be overcome by accepting The Sacrificial Death of Jesus Christ. However,we still must apply determination and acquire Biblical Knowledge in order to live the life as a Christian.
Come now, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go into such and such a town and spend a year there and trade and make a profit”— yet you do not know what tomorrow will bring. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes. Instead you ought to say, “If the Lord wills, we will live and do this or that.” As it is, you boast in your arrogance. All such boasting is evil. So whoever knows the right thing to do and fails to do it, for him it is sin.
But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. “Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.
For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.
SONG: Get Together – The Youngbloods – with lyrics
Today people shy away from talking about sin because The Bible teaches we all are sinners and many people refuse to accept this. Yes we all are sinners from the most horrible dictator to the shop lifter who takes an apple. In human terms there is a difference but to GOD sin is sin:
For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.Evil Comes from Sin
Overt deliberate action, unknown effects or unintended consequences? Any of the above can and often do cause harm. What can add to the negative results are subterfuge, callous disregard or unconcern for others.
There are six things that the Lord hates, seven that are an abomination to him: haughty eyes, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked plans, feet that make haste to run to evil, a false witness who breathes out lies, and one who sows discord among brothers.
Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruits.
Once David sinned with Bathsheba he wanted to conceal his sin; he then first wanted her husband Uriah to come home from the war and sleep with her on the pretense he needed his report but that failed . . .
Uriah said to David, “The ark and Israel and Judah dwell in booths, and my lord Joab and the servants of my lord are camping in the open field. Shall I then go to my house, to eat and to drink and to lie with my wife? As you live, and as your soul lives, I will not do this thing.”What does the Most Harm
He then created a plan for him to be out in front of the troops and the army to withdraw and leave him exposed to the enemy alone
14 In the morning David wrote a letter to Joab and sent it by the hand of Uriah.15 In the letter he wrote, “Set Uriah in the forefront of the hardest fighting, and then draw back from him, that he may be struck down, and die.”16 And as Joab was besieging the city, he assigned Uriah to the place where he knew there were valiant men.17 And the men of the city came out and fought with Joab, and some of the servants of David among the people fell. Uriah the Hittite also died.
David did harvest negative consequences because of his sinning.
Song: Chris Tomlin: “Your Heart (DAVID)” – Official Lyric Video
3 But understand this, that in the last days there will come times of difficulty.2 For people will be lovers of self, lovers of money, proud, arrogant, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy,3 heartless, unappeasable, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not loving good,4 treacherous, reckless, swollen with conceit, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God,5 having the appearance of godliness, but denying its power. Avoid such people.6 For among them are those who creep into households and capture weak women, burdened with sins and led astray by various passions,7 always learning and never able to arrive at a knowledge of the truth.
This letter to Timothy (part of The New Testament in The Bible) was written by (ST) Paul the Apostle almost 2000 years ago; no doubt truth about the nature of humans was recognized then, before then and even now. In the interest of Christians the description given of “the times” is a prophetic warning for unbelievers about the second coming of Christ and the “end times”.
SONG: Hillsong Young & Free – End of Days – Worship Lyric Video
Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God. He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.” And he who was seated on the throne said, “Behold, I am making all things new.” Also he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.” …
This was a longer segment of scripture than I usually post because it describes something so wonderful to long for one small excerpt. We can do more than speculate since we have Faith; the verses suggest a wonderful place for believers*.