From: David Kabanje
Date: April 19
Subject: GMU: Retaliation

Good Morning, Beautiful People!

A bruised ego seeks to retaliate. A spirit of retaliation is detrimental to Christian unity and personal growth. Retaliation snuffs out the embers of love left from a broken ego. Retaliation asserts us as judge and executioner. As a judge, we pronounce the deed done to us as wrong, regardless of whether we know the whole story. As executioners, we implement our version of justice on the offender. If the offender holds the same spirit of retaliation, they then create a cycle of violence and vengeance. Retaliation is evil because, as the old rhetoric says, “An eye for an eye leaves the world blind.” In our blindness and rage, we continue the cycle of violence and vengeance to respond to a hurt ego or personal wrong. Personal and corporate wrongs are wrong; however, how we react to them is the focus of today’s GMU.

The discipline of self-forgetfulness allows us to leave justice at the feet of Jesus. Jesus is our example in all things. When the evil spirit of retaliation tried to tempt Christ, “He did not retaliate; when He suffered, He made no threats. Instead, He entrusted Himself to Him who judges justly” (1 Peter 2:23). Since we are in Christ, we are made new, and we approach difficulties not from our sinful perspective but Christ’s perspective. The beauty of self-forgetfulness is that we trust God to justly deal with our opponents while treating our enemies as neighbors. To treat an enemy as a neighbor is the most Christlike thing to do when you feel a spirit of retaliation. Remember, “Dear friends, never take revenge. Leave that to the righteous anger of God. For the Scriptures say, “I will take revenge; I will pay them back, “says the Lord” (Romans 12:19).