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Daily Devotions from Lutheran Hour Ministries

"Vengeance"

June 25, 2012

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Repay no one evil for evil, but give thought to do what is honorable in the sight of all. If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all. 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." Romans 12:17-19

Author's Note: Please do not share this devotion with children before having given it an advanced reading. Use your discretion as the topic addressed is adult in nature.

There are times when it is difficult to be a Christian.

One of those times was covered in the news a week or so ago. It seems a Shiner, Texas, family was having a get-together for friends and family. Most people were outside the house while the family's four-year-old daughter and a 47-year-old family acquaintance were inside.

The girl's father ran into the house when he heard his daughter scream. There he found the guest trying to molest his child. The father stopped the molestation by hitting the man. He hit the man hard enough and long enough that the man died.

Looking back on what he did, the father says he feels terrible. It was not his intent to kill. Evaluating the event (as of this writing), the police have not arrested the dad. Although the investigation continues, they have said, "You have a right to defend your daughter."

Every father and mother who has read that story has stopped and asked, "What would I have done in that man's situation?" Christian parents, knowing that God has told us to pray for our enemies and avoid taking vengeance, must add that compelling factor to their consideration.

There are times when it is difficult to be a Christian.

As a father with two daughters, I hope I would have stopped the incident and turned the man over to the authorities. That's what I hope I would have done.

But I am a father, and I have a temper, and I know that sometimes such perverts avoid punishment. I am a father and I know that someone who does such a thing once will often repeat his offense a second time and a third and a ....

You understand. Yes, there are times when it is difficult to be a Christian.

This is also why I need God's help in being a good Christian all the time and not just when it's easy, convenient or when I am in control. Like the Savior, I always need to be about the Father's business.

THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, grant me the wisdom and faithfulness to follow Your will and not my natural inclinations. This I ask in the Name of Jesus who set His wishes aside, so I might be saved. Amen.

In Christ I remain His servant and yours,


Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries

Today's Bible Readings: 1 Kings 5-7    Acts 7:44-60

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