Sunday, October 30, 2011

Blessed are the Peacemakers

Note to self: Remember this the next time someone cuts me off in traffic... or in other potentially hostile situations. Words of wisdom from David Jeremiah (Turning Point Magazine - October 2011):
Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God. Matthew 5:9

A word. A slight. A look. A forgotten birthday or anniversary. A piece of gossip about us - yes, it was true but no, it didn't need to be spoken. Things happen to us every day, from minor to major, that could serve as an excuse for vengeance. And each time something hurtful happens, we have a choice to make: Will we be a peacemaker or a revenge seeker? Will we inflame the event with the fire of revenge or will we smother it with the blanket of peace?

Let's assume you've been hurt purposefully. What should you do? God said, "I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but that the wicked turn from his way and live" (Ezekiel 33:11). Substitute whatever you're tempted to do in retaliation for the word "death" in that verse and you'll get God's counsel on your contemplated course of action. God said that vengeance is His; He will repay (Romans 12:19). And Paul wrote that we are to do everything possible to "live peaceably with all men" (Romans 12:18). When we choose to forgive instead of fight, we are bringing peace to the world.

If you are faced with the choice of seeking peace or seeking vengeance today, choose peace. Receive the blessing of God in return for spreading the peace of God.

The noblest revenge is to forgive - Thomas Fuller

Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn. Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. Do not be conceited.

Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everybody. 18If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. Do not take revenge, my friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” says the Lord. On the contrary:

“If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head.” Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good. (Rom 12:14-21)

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