To Avenge or Not to Avenge



FEELING VENGEFUL? Have you been treated unjustly and now feel entitled to pay someone back? Then bring your dilemma, problem, tragedy, or offense here, and let’s think this through before we take counter actions.


Psalm 9 shapes my perspective

I PRAISE You in the midst of darkness, amid the turbulence of this storm, for You are righteous in all Your ways, and Your peace satisfies me.

My enemies perish in Your presence! (v.3 ) — Let Your presence fill me completely and to overflowing until my enemy’s advances become nothing more than a defeated wisp of existence. (Enemies defined here)

You have maintained my right and my cause; You sat on the throne judging in righteousness. (v.4 )– God cannot help but judge fairly from His throne. Lord, help me to keep drawing near to You and stay “right by Your side” in the way I act and speak. Let my every thought and word be a direct outflow of the sovereignty, peace, love, and joy that’s continually happening in Heaven.

You rebuke, You destroy, and You alone hold the power to blot out. (v.5 ) — I surrender the outcomes of all my earthly battles to You who have already fairly and justly won this war.

The Lord is a shelter for the oppressed, a refuge in times of trouble. Those who know Your name trust in You, for You, O Lord, do not abandon those who search for You. Psalm 9:9-10

PSALMS so clearly conveys how praising God is a powerful form of warfare, if not the most powerful weapon.
This backwards-sounding, weak-sounding method of counter-offense can be so difficult to embrace when life drops you into the middle of tragedy, hardship, heartache, or the like. Yet, praise is freeing! Not to mention healthy to the mind, emotions, and body.

WHEN we allow God to avenge us…
The nations have fallen into the pit they dug for others.
Their own feet have been caught in the trap they set. (v.15 )

KEEP IN MIND that we also will fall into the pits we dig and the traps we hide. God is not mocked; He is a just God. (Praise keeps us humble, and keeps our minds on Him and not on the problem at hand)

SO, WHAT’S THE POINT and purpose of asking Him for mercy in our seasons of need and desperation? We’re not asking Him for mercy so we can stand back up and punch someone, but “That I may show forth [recount and tell aloud] all Your praises!” vv.13-14  ⇐An action that requires continual surrender of self!

Our existence has never been “all about us,” but about the God we serve—the God who heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds [curing their pains and their sorrows] Psalm 147:3 

Invite Him to have His way in us.


AS A CHRIST FOLLOWER, am I making life more difficult than it’s intended to be? Am I foolishly focusing on problems and other stuff that’s not only out of my power to change but is stealing my breath, my stability, my peace, and my energy?

ARISE, O Lord!
Do not let mere mortals defy You!
Judge the nations!
Make them tremble in fear, O Lord.
Let the nations know they are merely human. (v.20)


Still feeling vengeful?

If someone examined the way I act and speak,
who, or what, would they say is really in control of my life?



The Peace of an Embattled Spirit

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