Job 31:29-30 (GNB) I have never been glad when my enemies suffered, or pleased when they met with disaster; I have never sinned by praying for their death
Don’t you find it interesting that long before Matthew 5:43-44, Job had this same understanding that it doesn’t please God when we rejoice at the downfall of others, even those we consider our enemies? Perhaps, this was why David would mourn Saul the way he did (2 Samuel 1:1-27).
God has said, ‘Vengeance is mine; I will repay’ (Romans 12:9), and this is because God alone has the moral authority to carry out judgment. It is a well-known legal maxim that he who comes into equity must come with clean hands, and then you hear Jesus say, ‘he that hath no sin, let him cast the first stone’.
When we repay evil for evil, we are appealing to judgment over mercy and submitting ourselves to be judged with the same standard and consideration with which we judged; suffice it to say that no man would live if God were to treat us in that way.
Now, beyond just allowing God exact judgment, we are not to gloat. Granted that your enemies might be reaping their just recompense of reward, yet, it should never serve as an occasion to gloat. This is because God delights in mercy and forgiveness, and He wills that all will access His grace and mercy.
So when next you are tempted to gloat, remind yourself the words of Matthew 5:43-45: ‘Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt love thy neighbour, and hate thine enemy. But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you; That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust.’
Go into today meditating on these words of Jesus.
Make this confession: I am of God, I walk in love, I walk in forgiveness, I do not repay evil for evil and do not rejoice in evil but take delight in all that is good. Amen.
Yearly Bible Reading: II John (In Devotional Audio)
Credits: Bible (Bible Experience, Zondervan)
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