Jeremiah 26:14 Not Fighting Back

Hands raised up

As for me, I am in your hands; do with me whatever you think is good and right. Jeremiah 26:14 

Having personal rights is a demand most people in America make and many people around the world desire have those rights. People want to be able to have their own freedom to make their own choices without any consequences.

Giving up those rights is not easy for most people to do. They will fight back anyone who fights against their rights or attempts to take them away. Most will just fight back with words, while some will physically try to fight back. Many court cases are all about the loss of some right or freedom.

Jeremiah had a harsh word from God to the people. As he gave the message, the people were very angry with him. Many wanted to kill him. Jeremiah stated that he was in their hands and that they could do with him whatever they felt was best to be done.

Jeremiah had given up any of his rights as a citizen when he spoke before the leaders of Israel. He put himself in God’s hands.

Very often believers will physically or verbally fight for their rights to say or do something. They will get angry with those who fight back or persecute them, rather than just trusting God through the situation and allowing God to get His own vengeance.

Jesus never fought back or talked back to those who came against Him, with the exception of the Pharisees, who were supposed to be the God fearing leaders. He allowed the people to do what they thought was right, even up to the point of the crucifixion.

Today believers still have a message that many will hate to hear. Some will persecute believers because of the message. Instead of fighting back, believers must allow God to be in control and trust Him through whatever happens. All that needs to be done is loving the enemy and sharing God’s message of love.

You will have days when you need to be a witness of Jesus to this world and the world will not like your message. There may come persecution, maybe with just words or physically. Either way it comes you have a choice as to how you react to it.

Put on the character of Jesus and Jeremiah and do not fight back. Keep showing God’s love and trust God to get you through the situation. God is watching and will take vengeance as needed.

I pray today that you will know Jesus as your Savior; that God will remove fear of this world from your heart; that you will speak God’s message boldly; and that God will give you favor with those you speak to. 

Isaiah 53:7 Not Talking Back

Silent sign

He was oppressed and afflicted, yet he did not open his mouth; he was led like a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before its shearers is silent, so he did not open his mouth. Isaiah 53:7 

Keeping quiet and not talking back is a difficult thing for many people to do. They have their ‘rights’ and will make it known. Most will not just allow anyone and everyone to abuse them or speak bad about them.

It is common today that when something bad is said or done, the person will file a lawsuit against the offender. They attempt to strike back and get revenge for what was done wrong. Others will not do the lawsuit, but will talk back, getting mad at the person and letting everyone else know what was done wrong.

Isaiah has a prophesy about Jesus in that He will be oppressed and afflicted, yet will not say a word. He will allow Himself to be led to the slaughter without talking back.

Jesus was the only perfect person who did not deserve any punishment. Yet, He took on the punishment for the sins of every person in all of history so that they might live.

As He was being abused and beaten, He did not cry out in anger or retaliation, but accepted it.

It is common for believers today to be just like the world in talking back. They will not be silent about their ‘rights’. They will draw up lawsuits and fight back.

Acting in this way is not acting as Jesus did and would do. He always acted in love and compassion.

Every believer needs to work on being quiet as Jesus was quiet. Leave the vengeance to God and just show love and compassion, trusting God to get him through the situation.

There will be times when people will do things wrong to you. Sometimes it will be done because you are believer, other times it will be done just out of being mean.

You have a choice on how you will respond. You can be like the world and talk back, cursing the person and attempting to get revenge for what was done wrong. Or you can keep quiet and continue to show love, trusting God to deal with the situation in His way and time.

Jesus took everything for you and you are to be just like Him to the world.

I pray today that you will know Jesus as your Savior; that God will give you strength to be silent when needed; that you will show God’s love and not anger to others; and that you will speak God’s love into the lives of others. 

Psalm 130:4 Forgiven To Serve

Hands to serve

But with you there is forgiveness, so that we can, with reverence, serve you. Psalm 130:4 

The world does not like to forgive. Vengeance is the desire of many throughout the world. People want someone to pay for what was done wrong.

Feuds often continue for years because neither side wants to forgive the other. It is all about self and not loving the other person enough to forgive. People are self-serving and will hold a grudge against someone for years.

Often they are passing one what was given to them. One is not forgiven, so he will not forgiven anyone else. Only pain and trouble will continue with this type of life of self-service.

The writer of this psalm knows that God forgives. The purpose of forgiveness is so that he can serve God.

There have been many who have made bad decisions in the past and feel as if those bad decisions hold them back. They feel as though they can no longer really serve God, because of past sins.

People know that if there is sin in their lives, they cannot serve God. Satan fills them with the facts about past sins and holds them back, forgetting that it is because of sin that Jesus came to this earth. He came to forgive, not condemn.

Jesus knew that with sin in a person’s life, he cannot come before God to serve Him. Jesus is willing to forgive and remove all of those sins in order that the person may come before God and serve Him.

Where there is forgiveness there is peace and love. Since God has done a great thing in forgiving a person, he can now serve God with a pure heart of reverence. Jesus did a great thing in forgiving a person, it was a selfless act of service. The believer can now return that act and pass it on to others.

You may be holding back from serving God because of some past sin that you have done. Know that Jesus is standing there ready to forgive you and help you move on.

You have been forgiven of your sins, so that you may stand pure before God. You may enter His house to serve Him in any way He needs. Do not allow yourself to believe that you are worthless and not worthy of serving God. Jesus made the way for you to do so. Serve God out of love for what He did for you.

I pray today that you will know the forgiveness Jesus provides you; that you will serve God with love and reverence; that you will have peace with God; and that you will serve others out of love for God.

1 Peter 3:9 Repay With Blessings

 

Flowing river

Do not repay evil with evil or insult with insult. On the contrary, repay evil with blessing, because to this you were called so that you may inherit a blessing. 1 Peter 3:9

Every day people insult or do something wrong, evil, to someone else. People can be mean and hateful to others on a regular basis. Some are violent, while others are not violent in action, but in words.

The reaction of most people is to strike back. It is common that the strike back is done in the same manner, violence for violence, bad words for bad words. Others may not strike the person directly, but talk badly about him to others, cutting him down in public.

The world believes that a person has the right to strike back in the same manner. They use evil to combat evil. In this they are just compiling sin upon sin. They are making the situation worse. It will usually continue to build, each person adding more to the fire.

God does not work that way. Jesus did not work in that manner when He walked on the earth. As Jesus was being whipped, beaten and nailed to the cross, He did not strike back physically or with words. He actually blessed the people asking God to forgive them.

Believers are to pour out blessings upon those who do evil to them. It does not matter if the evil was done intentionally or by accident. Giving a blessing, is showing love–God’s love to the person.

People will hurt others, both believers and non-believers, because that is the nature of man–to sin. Believers are to show love and compassion, not hate. They are to leave the vengeance up to God. They are not to return evil for evil or insult for insult.

There will be times when someone does evil to you or insults you. Before you react, think about how God has treated you when you insulted or did evil to Him. He showed you love and blessed you. Take that same blessing and pour it forward to another.

Do not allow yourself to fall into the trap the world has of repaying evil for evil. Do not allow yourself to fall into sin because of someone’s bad actions or words.

In the end God will bless you greater than getting revenge will ever help you. Live as Jesus lived, not as the world does.

I pray today that you will know the blessings God has given you; that you will be filled with God’s love for those who offend you; that you will give God’s blessings to those who hurt you; and that you will be a blessing to those around you.

Luke 23:34 Ultimate Love

Cross On A Hill.jpg

Jesus said, “Father forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.” Luke 23:34

As Jesus was being crucified, dying on the cross people were mocking Him and not believing in Him. This was occurring after a long night of extreme torture. Even as this was happening Jesus still asked the Father to forgive them.

People get hurt by other people on a regular basis. Most people will strike back or attempt to strike back at those who strike them. They want to get full vengeance for the wrong that was done to them.

The striking back takes different forms. Some will physically strike back and immediately. Others will strike family or friends of the person. Some will strike with just words rather than get physical. Many will call authorities and lawyers to strike back. Some will slander the person, causing another type of strike.

One common theme runs through all these methods of striking back and it is self vengeance against another person.

Jesus did not do any of these things while He was on the cross. He had never done anything illegal or wrong to anyone at anytime. He was perfectly innocent before men and God, yet was tried and sentenced to death on a cross.

As He hung there He was willing to forgive the people, because He knew that they really did not know what they were doing was wrong. He showed ultimate love for the people.

Anyone who hurts another person really does not know what they are doing is wrong. They think that they are doing the right thing. Satan has deceived them into doing the wrong thing.

You may never have to go through actual physical violence, but you will have a time where you will be hurt by someone. Someone may lie about you, or curse you, or cut you down in some way. Regardless of how you are hurt, it will hurt.

You will have a choice to make. Either you strike back in some way. Or you choose to love the person and forgive them…showing ultimate love as Jesus did.

Show the person God’s love and forgiveness and they may repent of what they did and serve God. They may choose the path of love…if they have been shown it and given that opportunity.

What is your choice: vengeance as the world or love as Jesus?

I pray today that you will know God’s love for you; that you will share His love for others; that you will not seek vengeance, but forgiveness; and that you will know what God has forgiven you of.