Mercy, Justice, Vengeance

Discussion and debate not related to prophecy.

Mercy, Justice, Vengeance

Postby keithareilly on Thu Jul 24, 2014 2:04 am

Acts9:13-16
13 But Ananias answered, “Lord, I have heard from many about this man, how much evil he has done to your saints at Jerusalem. 14 And here he has authority from the chief priests to bind all who call on your name.” 15 But the Lord said to him, “Go, for he is a chosen instrument of mine to carry my name before the Gentiles and kings and the children of Israel. 16 For I will show him how much he must suffer for the sake of my name.”

I see in these verses the best example of how God can be merciful, just, and vengeful all at the very same time.
Saul persecuted and killed Christians.
1) Mercy: Saul receives mercy and believes in Christ; ( I will have mercy upon whom I will have mercy)
2) Justice: Saul is made to suffer much, even stoning and left for dead,
3) Vengeance: The suffering life Saul led as a Christian was an act of vengenace for those and their families whom he persecuted and killed.

"It is a terrible thing to fall into the hands of the living God".

Any thoughts?

keith
keithareilly
Supporting Member
 
Posts: 1680
Joined: Mon Mar 13, 2006 2:48 pm
Location: Mineral Bluff, GA

Re: Mercy, Justice, Vengeance

Postby Jericho on Thu Jul 24, 2014 8:09 am

Is Paul being made to pay for the transgressions he committed as Saul? If so, this would seem to contradict everything I understand about salvation. When we are saved our sins are forgiven and forgotten. We are not made to pay penance for our transgressions, otherwise that would mean Jesus blood is insufficient in covering our sins. Wouldn't it?
Formerly SwordOfGideon
User avatar
Jericho
 
Posts: 4441
Joined: Fri Aug 01, 2008 5:05 am
Location: Tx

Re: Mercy, Justice, Vengeance

Postby WilliamL on Thu Jul 24, 2014 10:55 am

Consider this passage, regarding David's sin with Bathsheba:

2 Sam. 12:13-14 And David said unto Nathan, I have sinned against the LORD. And Nathan said unto David, The LORD also hath put away thy sin; thou shalt not die. Howbeit, because by this deed thou hast given great occasion to the enemies of the LORD to blaspheme, the child also that is born unto thee shall surely die.


So, after David repented and was forgiven, there was yet a material consequence to result from his sin. Not a spiritual consequence, but a physical one. God could not allow a bastard to become king of Israel, so the child had to die.

Some effects begun in the material world, as a result of sins, are as inexorable as gravity. Even when the sins have been forgiven. The ill effects of divorce upon children come to mind, even though the parents have later repented.

However, the great mystery is that God can even turn all such evils into good in the long run. What a testimony of faith Paul's life became as an inspiration to others! And that testimony thereby became greater stars in Paul's crown than he might have otherwise achieved.
WilliamL
 
Posts: 176
Joined: Wed May 28, 2008 12:13 pm
Location: Sangre de Christo Mountains

Re: Mercy, Justice, Vengeance

Postby Abiding in His Word on Thu Jul 24, 2014 2:31 pm

WilliamL wrote:Consider this passage, regarding David's sin with Bathsheba:

2 Sam. 12:13-14 And David said unto Nathan, I have sinned against the LORD. And Nathan said unto David, The LORD also hath put away thy sin; thou shalt not die. Howbeit, because by this deed thou hast given great occasion to the enemies of the LORD to blaspheme, the child also that is born unto thee shall surely die.


So, after David repented and was forgiven, there was yet a material consequence to result from his sin. Not a spiritual consequence, but a physical one. God could not allow a bastard to become king of Israel, so the child had to die.


Nathan's parable to David makes the reason for God's anger David's greed and murder and the fact that he secretly schemed to accomplish his evil plan.

2Sa 12:9 'Why have you despised the word of the LORD by doing evil in His sight? You have struck down Uriah the Hittite with the sword, have taken his wife to be your wife, and have killed him with the sword of the sons of Ammon.

2Sa 12:12 'Indeed you did it secretly, but I will do this thing before all Israel, and under the sun.'"

David had 7/8 wives yet his lust drove him to murder in order to cover his sin. When he discovered Bathsheba was pregnant, he recalled Uriah from battle and encouraged him (under the guise of his thoughtfulness) to spend time with the woman he loved. Uriah refused to enjoy home and family while the rest of the military was engaged in battle. David had then schemed to have him killed to protect his own reputation.

I see nothing in scripture referencing a "bastard" especially since most patriarchs and kings had multiple wives, slaves, and concubines and the number of offspring boggles the mind. But David's greed led him to great lengths to sin and try to cover it.

God also denied David the job of building the temple since he was had a bloody reign:

1Ch 22:8 "But the word of the LORD came to me, saying, 'You have shed much blood and have waged great wars; you shall not build a house to My name, because you have shed so much blood on the earth before Me.
1Ch 22:9 'Behold, a son will be born to you, who shall be a man of rest; and I will give him rest from all his enemies on every side; for his name shall be Solomon, and I will give peace and quiet to Israel in his days.


Some effects begun in the material world, as a result of sins, are as inexorable as gravity. Even when the sins have been forgiven. The ill effects of divorce upon children come to mind, even though the parents have later repented.


It's true that sin often has ill effects, but in the example you mentioned, they are natural effects. In other words, they are not necessarily imposed by God, but the natural results of reaping what is sown. Every sin has some effect on others unless it's committed in secret. Lies, cheating, anger, adultery, pride, greed, stealing, etc. all likely involve others. But again, David's sin of adultery and murder was personally punished by God Himself.
User avatar
Abiding in His Word
SITE ADMIN
 
Posts: 28701
Joined: Mon Mar 06, 2006 4:54 pm
Location: SW Florida

Re: Mercy, Justice, Vengeance

Postby Abiding in His Word on Thu Jul 24, 2014 2:57 pm

keithareilly wrote:I see in these verses the best example of how God can be merciful, just, and vengeful all at the very same time.
Saul persecuted and killed Christians.
1) Mercy: Saul receives mercy and believes in Christ; ( I will have mercy upon whom I will have mercy)


Yes, Paul received mercy because he acted in ignorance and unbelief. He said that his situation demonstrated Christ's patience toward sinners. 1 Tim. 1:12-16

2) Justice: Saul is made to suffer much, even stoning and left for dead,


I'm not sure Paul suffers physically, and certainly not as proof of God's justice. Jericho was correct in that God's justice was satisfied by the death of Jesus on the cross. The certificate of debt was cancelled. Col. 2:14

3) Vengeance: The suffering life Saul led as a Christian was an act of vengenace for those and their families whom he persecuted and killed.


Again, Keith, God doesn't take out His vengeance or wrath on believers or else we nullify the work of the cross.

Any thoughts?


Those are mine... :wink:
User avatar
Abiding in His Word
SITE ADMIN
 
Posts: 28701
Joined: Mon Mar 06, 2006 4:54 pm
Location: SW Florida

Re: Mercy, Justice, Vengeance

Postby Jay Ross on Thu Jul 24, 2014 7:13 pm

Hello

Please allow me to suggest that David's sin was acting God Like, which was the only sin that the people of the nation of Israel could join King David with. Nathan the prophet told of the manifestations of this sin which included, murder, and adultery.

God challenged David through the prophet around 8 years after he committed adultery with Bathsheba after King David had forgotten that he had sinned before God by his God like Acts and had not repented.

Where do I glean the information that around 8 years had passed between the sin deeds and the call to repentance?

It can be determined here: -
1 Chronicles 3:5: - These were born to him in Jerusalem: Shim'e-a, Shobab, Nathan and Solomon, four by Bath-shu'a, the daughter of Am'mi-el;


Solomon was the fourth son of David's by Bathsheba and he was begot when David went into Bathsheba to comfort her after the Lord had taken Shim'e-a the son conceived during their adultery before David had brought her into his house and married her.

God had allowed this approximate 8 year time of Grace for King David to repent of His sin.

When we judge others as to their righteousness, or whether or not another's understanding of the scriptures is in line with God's word, we too are guilty of acting God like. And just like King David we need to repent of our sin.

This particular sin is so easy to fall into that we do not realise it has happened as we can logically justify our actions. Yet we so willingly cross that line so often that it becomes second nature to us such that we do not realise that we are doing it and continuing in that sin.

I know that God shows me much grace by allowing time to pass so that I can repent of this sin before He will challenge me for it to my detriment. Our pride so often becomes our undoing.

Shalom

Jay Ross

PS: - The difficulty we all have is being able to see the real cause of the usual manifestations that occur. When King David repented of the real sin that caused the manifestations of sin that we all so easily recognise, God also forgave king David of the manifestations but the consequences of these sins were not removed.
Jay Ross
 
Posts: 1373
Joined: Fri Feb 25, 2011 12:11 am

Re: Mercy, Justice, Vengeance

Postby Exit40 on Fri Jul 25, 2014 7:52 am

Abiding in His Word wrote:It's true that sin often has ill effects, but in the example you mentioned, they are natural effects. In other words, they are not necessarily imposed by God, but the natural results of reaping what is sown. Every sin has some effect on others unless it's committed in secret. Lies, cheating, anger, adultery, pride, greed, stealing, etc. all likely involve others. But again, David's sin of adultery and murder was personally punished by God Himself.


Hi Abiding. Natural effects are Spiritual effects, and vica versa, I believe.

Mat 18:18 Verily I say unto you, Whatsoever ye shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever ye shall loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.

Our very thoughts, even if we try contain them, but still entertain them, can be transmitted to others by our non verbal communication, body language, and entice others to further entertain, you know the rest. David was chosen of God, he bore a greater burden, so to speak, much was required of him. As such, David is also an example to be considered.

God Bless You

David
Eph 2:8 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God

T'was Grace that taught my heart to fear.
And Grace, my fears relieved.
How precious did that Grace appear
The hour I first believed.
User avatar
Exit40
Supporting Member
 
Posts: 8880
Joined: Mon Mar 06, 2006 6:46 am

Re: Mercy, Justice, Vengeance

Postby keithareilly on Fri Jul 25, 2014 8:36 am

Abiding said ...
Again, Keith, God doesn't take out His vengeance or wrath on believers or else we nullify the work of the cross.


I do not equate wrath and vengeance. Vengeance is repayment, a form of justice.

God is Merciful.
God is Just.
God is Vengeful (it is His to repay, not ours).

God is also faithful, trustworthy, and true.
Therefore, I expect him to be Merciful, Just, Vengeful, Faithful, Trustworthy, and True; never compromising any of these.

keith
keithareilly
Supporting Member
 
Posts: 1680
Joined: Mon Mar 13, 2006 2:48 pm
Location: Mineral Bluff, GA

Re: Mercy, Justice, Vengeance

Postby Abiding in His Word on Fri Jul 25, 2014 9:12 am

keithareilly wrote:God is Merciful.
God is Just.
God is Vengeful (it is His to repay, not ours).

God is also faithful, trustworthy, and true.
Therefore, I expect him to be Merciful, Just, Vengeful, Faithful, Trustworthy, and True; never compromising any of these


Of course. God doesn't change and none of His characteristics and/or attributes are compromised.

Where I am trying to get clarity here is your use of Saul/Paul as an example of God's justice and vengeance.

1) Mercy: Saul receives mercy and believes in Christ; ( I will have mercy upon whom I will have mercy)
2) Justice: Saul is made to suffer much, even stoning and left for dead,
3) Vengeance: The suffering life Saul led as a Christian was an act of vengenace for those and their families whom he persecuted and killed.


So for my clarification, do you believe God imposed justice and vengeance on Paul in the form of suffering, stoning, and being left for dead because he persecuted and murdered Christians?
User avatar
Abiding in His Word
SITE ADMIN
 
Posts: 28701
Joined: Mon Mar 06, 2006 4:54 pm
Location: SW Florida

Re: Mercy, Justice, Vengeance

Postby keithareilly on Fri Jul 25, 2014 10:30 am

Abiding said ...
So for my clarification, do you believe God imposed justice and vengeance on Paul in the form of suffering, stoning, and being left for dead because he persecuted and murdered Christians?


No, the verse is clear, God did this for His own name's sake. Says so right in the verse.
Which is also to say it was (or synonymous with) Just, Vengeful, and Merciful.

Keith
keithareilly
Supporting Member
 
Posts: 1680
Joined: Mon Mar 13, 2006 2:48 pm
Location: Mineral Bluff, GA

Re: Mercy, Justice, Vengeance

Postby daffodyllady on Fri Jul 25, 2014 5:04 pm

Jay Ross wrote:...God challenged David through the prophet around 8 years after he committed adultery with Bathsheba after King David had forgotten that he had sinned before God by his God like Acts and had not repented.

Where do I glean the information that around 8 years had passed between the sin deeds and the call to repentance?

It can be determined here: -
1 Chronicles 3:5: - These were born to him in Jerusalem: Shim'e-a, Shobab, Nathan and Solomon, four by Bath-shu'a, the daughter of Am'mi-el;


Solomon was the fourth son of David's by Bathsheba and he was begot when David went into Bathsheba to comfort her after the Lord had taken Shim'e-a the son conceived during their adultery before David had brought her into his house and married her.

God had allowed this approximate 8 year time of Grace for King David to repent of His sin...


This scripture does not state that this was the birth order of those four sons.

The story in 2 Samuel 11 and 12 does not sound at all like there were three sons born to David by Bathsheba, before Solomon.

However, God did allow David to go as far as he could go, on his trajectory into sin, before He sent Nathan the prophet. He allowed David plenty of time to stop and turn around and repent, if he would.

Why didn't God stop David from doing such a horrible thing?
We as human parents tend to try to prevent our children from doing something bad!
But God doesn't operate that way. He lets us go as far as we will go.
WHY?

I think He allows this for one reason: So that we can see just how bad our hearts really are. When David went as far as he could... and then had his eyes opened to his horrific sinfulness, he broke. He genuinely repented. Had God stopped him from being bad to the bone, he may never have written,

Psa 51:5 Behold, I was shapen in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me.

"God! I am wicked all the way through! In me dwelleth NO GOOD THING!"
This sounds like a New Testament concept: That the heart is wicked, and complete repentance is required.

Psa 51:6 Behold, thou desirest truth in the inward parts...
Psa 51:10 Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me...
Psa 51:17 The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise.


It is by God's mercies that we are not consumed.
It is also by God's mercies that we are allowed to sin as much as we can.
Because it is only when we can see the true condition of our sinful hearts, that we can truly repent.

And God knows precisely how much we have to sin, until we are able to see ourselves.
How merciful He is!
Daffodyllady
Come ye out from among them, and be ye separate, and touch not the unclean thing, and I will recieve you... Abstain from all appearance of evil...Without holiness shall no man see the Lord.
daffodyllady
 
Posts: 4237
Joined: Mon Mar 06, 2006 8:19 am

Re: Mercy, Justice, Vengeance

Postby daffodyllady on Fri Jul 25, 2014 5:22 pm

keithareilly wrote:
Abiding said ...
So for my clarification, do you believe God imposed justice and vengeance on Paul in the form of suffering, stoning, and being left for dead because he persecuted and murdered Christians?


No, the verse is clear, God did this for His own name's sake. Says so right in the verse.
Which is also to say it was (or synonymous with) Just, Vengeful, and Merciful.

Keith


According to the Word of God, vengeance never is executed by God against the righteous, but only against certain people:
Romans 3:5,6 But if our unrighteousness commend the righteousness of God, what shall we say? Is God unrighteous who taketh vengeance? (I speak as a man)
God forbid: for then how shall God judge the world?
Here, vengeance is what happens when God judges the world. God is not talking about the redeemed, but about the world.

2Thessalonians 1:7-9 And to you who are troubled rest with us, when the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels,
In flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ:
Who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power;


Vengeance is all about revenge. Punishment. Wrath.

God put all that on Christ, when He took our sins on Him, on the cross.
If our sins are washed away by the blood of Christ, they are GONE.
There is no longer any reason for God to be angry with us.
Therefore, we are not appointed unto wrath, or unto God's vengeance.

Yes, God's nature includes vengeance.
But not toward His children.

Paul's suffering had nothing to do with vengeance for his former sins.
If it did, then Christ's blood did not wash them completely away.
Think about it.
Daffodyllady
Come ye out from among them, and be ye separate, and touch not the unclean thing, and I will recieve you... Abstain from all appearance of evil...Without holiness shall no man see the Lord.
daffodyllady
 
Posts: 4237
Joined: Mon Mar 06, 2006 8:19 am

Re: Mercy, Justice, Vengeance

Postby keithareilly on Sat Jul 26, 2014 5:43 am

Daffodyllady,

I am not sure if your post is agreeing or disagreeing with what I posted. So let me clarify.

As I said, God caused Paul to suffer for God's name sake, just as the verse says. For Example:
1) God caused Paul to suffer, lest people accused God of being unjust (Justice, For His name's sake),
2) God caused Paul to suffer, lest people execute vengeance themselves, (Vengeance, For His name's sake).

God demonstrates, Mercy, Justice, and leaves men without excuse to execute vengeance.
And He does this without compromising any one of them.
He is protecting His name just as the verse says.


Keith
keithareilly
Supporting Member
 
Posts: 1680
Joined: Mon Mar 13, 2006 2:48 pm
Location: Mineral Bluff, GA

Re: Mercy, Justice, Vengeance

Postby daffodyllady on Sat Jul 26, 2014 6:10 pm

keithareilly wrote:Daffodyllady,

I am not sure if your post is agreeing or disagreeing with what I posted. So let me clarify.

As I said, God caused Paul to suffer for God's name sake, just as the verse says. For Example:
1) God caused Paul to suffer, lest people accused God of being unjust (Justice, For His name's sake),

I disagree with this. God did not cause Paul to suffer. Paul could have chosen to live a less persecuted lifestyle. But he chose to live on the front lines, and welcomed the suffering, as a privilege granted to him. When we finally get to heaven, those who have suffered for Christ will be receiving the greatest rewards... so Paul's suffering should actually be seen as an offer of promotion.

People accuse God of being unjust all the time. What kind of a Name would He have, if He made His own children suffer, just to make himself look better to evil people?

And what kind of Name would He have, if He said He forgave our sins, and then made us pay for them anyhow? That's not forgiveness. That idea makes the blood of Jesus of no effect!

2) God caused Paul to suffer, lest people execute vengeance themselves, (Vengeance, For His name's sake).

This makes no sense. Those who caught Paul in the Temple in Jerusalem and put him in chains were attempting to execute vengeance! And Christians who are persecuted do not seek vengeance against those who persecute them... so no vengeance would be coming from that quarter. ("Love your enemies, do good to them that hate you, etc...")

God demonstrates, Mercy, Justice, and leaves men without excuse to execute vengeance.
And He does this without compromising any one of them.
He is protecting His name just as the verse says.


Keith

Yes, God does demonstrate mercy, justice and vengeance. But he does not cause His children to suffer persecution as a matter of justice against their formerly sinful behavior.

Though we may face natural consequences of sin even though we repent, those are not God's judgment against us. It's simply God's law of sowing and reaping that affects all mankind.

You are "reading into" the scriptures between the lines, trying to make it say things it does not say.
Daffodyllady
Come ye out from among them, and be ye separate, and touch not the unclean thing, and I will recieve you... Abstain from all appearance of evil...Without holiness shall no man see the Lord.
daffodyllady
 
Posts: 4237
Joined: Mon Mar 06, 2006 8:19 am

Re: Mercy, Justice, Vengeance

Postby keithareilly on Sat Jul 26, 2014 6:42 pm

Daffodyllady,

I would be happy to hear your understanding of verse 16.

Acts 9:16
For I will show him how much he must suffer for the sake of my name.”

It seems to me Paul had no choice and God caused him to suffer. But, I am open to an alternative explanation.

Keith
keithareilly
Supporting Member
 
Posts: 1680
Joined: Mon Mar 13, 2006 2:48 pm
Location: Mineral Bluff, GA

Re: Mercy, Justice, Vengeance

Postby daffodyllady on Sat Jul 26, 2014 9:41 pm

It's like this, in my humble opinion.
There is no under name under heaven, whereby we must be saved.
One could take that verse to mean that we MUST be saved, and have no choice.
Yet, we DO have a choice. The "must" is the only way we can follow God.

Paul had a choice. He could follow God, which was an assignment that led into severe persecution for His name's sake. (Which does not allude at all to Paul suffering for any of his past sins... only that his suffering would bring glory to God, as Paul showed the same spirit that was in Christ himself.)

Suffering for Christ is a privilege, not a punishment.
It is an opportunity to gain great reward for eternity.
Daffodyllady
Come ye out from among them, and be ye separate, and touch not the unclean thing, and I will recieve you... Abstain from all appearance of evil...Without holiness shall no man see the Lord.
daffodyllady
 
Posts: 4237
Joined: Mon Mar 06, 2006 8:19 am

Re: Mercy, Justice, Vengeance

Postby keithareilly on Sun Jul 27, 2014 1:37 am

There seems to be some confusion about what I am saying.

No where am I saying Paul was punished or under God's wrath for past sins and nothing I have said should be interpreted as punishment. Punishment is for the purpose of changing bevavior. It may exceed what a person has earned or may be less than what a person is earned. Nor am I saying Paul was under God's wrath after he was converted. Wrath is worse than punishment. It is not for the purpose of changing behavior. Christians may be punished to change their behavior but they are not under God's wrath.

Please reread the original Post and exclude the assumption it includes Punishment and Wrath.

I still hold that Paul's suffering is Justice, and Vengeance being a form of Justice (as in: it is mine to repay), holds.
I am not saying is that it is payment for his past sins. What I am saying is that it does preserve God's reputation as being Merciful, Just and Vengeful. Why? Because Paul caused suffereing and God made him to suffer. Consequently, nobody can accuse God of being unjust or not avenging. Yet, he was still merciful all at the same time. Personally, I think this is one of the wisest things I have read.



Keith
Last edited by keithareilly on Sun Jul 27, 2014 6:59 am, edited 1 time in total.
keithareilly
Supporting Member
 
Posts: 1680
Joined: Mon Mar 13, 2006 2:48 pm
Location: Mineral Bluff, GA

Re: Mercy, Justice, Vengeance

Postby keithareilly on Sun Jul 27, 2014 6:00 am

Daffodyllady,

Do you think our God, who willingly planned and killed his only begotten son, would not actively bring about suffering upon of us, even as we believe and trust him as Christ did, for the purpose of his name?

Keith
keithareilly
Supporting Member
 
Posts: 1680
Joined: Mon Mar 13, 2006 2:48 pm
Location: Mineral Bluff, GA

Re: Mercy, Justice, Vengeance

Postby Spreading Salt on Sun Jul 27, 2014 7:50 am

Keith wrote:

I would be happy to hear your understanding of verse 16.

Acts 9:16
For I will show him how much he must suffer for the sake of my name.”


This verse reminds me that God is omniscient. He knows the beginning from the end and thus He knows the path that Paul's Christian walk will take. This includes the persecution to come along the way.

Keith wrote:

Do you think our God, who willingly planned and killed his only begotten son, would not actively bring about suffering upon of us, even as we believe and trust him as Christ did, for the purpose of his name?


Part of my answer to this is "yes", but there is more.

IMO, you have just put God into a very calculated "vindictive" type of a position (against those who have chosen to believe and follow Him). God and Yeshua aren't separate. God sacrificed Himself for His creation. His solution to the fallen problem from the beginning of time, was to die Himself. This is a picture of love and hopefully a different view of what you are stating.



Please remember that the sins of the world were paid for on the cross. All of them. It is finished. What we have as a result of the fall is a very broken, bruised, battered world. Consequences suck!

An Omnipotent God is in control of all things and can certainly orchestrate and manipulate any and all situations. Does God actively bring about suffering? I guess the way you have presented it Keith is what rubs me the wrong way a little bit. Whether intended or not, your comment above creates and image in my mind of a God who intentionally shoots out vengeful acts upon people to make them pay for crimes/sins against Him.

This is not how I picture a loving/merciful God. I know He allows things to happen. Look at Job. I also believe He will use all things to grow, shape, change the hearts of His own. In this fallen world, we have horrible catastrophes daily, from weather to human derived. Can God change the direction of a storm? Yes. Will He? His will be done.

Again, as an Omniscient God, He already knows what's coming and could choose to prevent anything from happening. He is not reacting as if He was caught off guard or surprised by anything.

Discussions have gone in circles regarding God's character traits. I know He will mete out His wrath and judgment on the living and the dead. I also know He will hold onto His own and no one can take them from His hand. I trust the race we all run will be under His Divine guidance and for His purpose.

Hebrews 10:31Complete Jewish Bible (CJB)

31 It is a terrifying thing to fall into the hands of the living God!
I think only for the unsaved.

Jeremiah 29
4 “Here is what Adonai-Tzva’ot, the God of Isra’el, says to all those in exile, whom I have caused to be carried off captive from Yerushalayim to Bavel: ................ 11 For I know what plans I have in mind for you,’ says Adonai,‘plans for well-being, not for bad things; so that you can have hope and a future.


In the above quote, I have pointed out God orchestrates the captivity of Israel for their good.

As a believer who loves Him, my faith allows me to trust Him in all things. This includes the bad that is allowed or orchestrated by Him in my life (along my own race to the finish).

:a2: SS
Image
User avatar
Spreading Salt
Supporting Member
 
Posts: 3666
Joined: Mon May 01, 2006 7:29 am
Location: Washington

Re: Mercy, Justice, Vengeance

Postby keithareilly on Sun Jul 27, 2014 10:38 am

Spreadingsalt,

God loved the world so much that He gave His only begotten Son.

It was a terrible thing to do. It was awful.
It was an awful, terribly good thing to do.
A God who could do this is truly terrifying.
God's love is so great it is awful, terrifying.

I know that sounds a rather strange combination.
But quite frankly, there are no limits to what a God willing to sacrifice His own Son is capable of doing.
It is a frighteningly staggeringly terrifying thought.

I do not think I am painting God in a bad light.
I think, because we rest in His love, we tend to forget just how terrible He is.
I think we say, "A loving God would not do that", instead of looking at what God does and learning who He really is, what love really is.

Why do we Love God and why would we want to be adopted by a father who sacrificed his only begotten son?
Because, He first loved us and because He loves us terribly.

Keith
keithareilly
Supporting Member
 
Posts: 1680
Joined: Mon Mar 13, 2006 2:48 pm
Location: Mineral Bluff, GA

Re: Mercy, Justice, Vengeance

Postby keithareilly on Sun Jul 27, 2014 12:45 pm

Honestly,

I am surprised at the negative feedback on this post.

Does no one see that God causing Paul to suffer as he did proves to the believers that Paul was not a spy, just faking his belief to identify more Christians? Does not anyone see that Paul's suffering made it easier for the body of Christ to be one, especially those and the loved ones of those whom Saul persecuted? Causing Paul to suffer left no room for resentment against God or Paul in the hearts of those and the loved ones of whom Saul persecuted. Don't you think it made it easier for everyone to forgive Saul seeing what God put him through? Saul had a reputation of persecuting Christians; for Paul to be effective, that reputation had to be replaced. Don't you think God was relieving Ananias' anxiety about taking Paul in when He told Ananias about Saul's up coming suffering?

It was a very wise for all involved for God to cause Paul to suffer.


Keith
keithareilly
Supporting Member
 
Posts: 1680
Joined: Mon Mar 13, 2006 2:48 pm
Location: Mineral Bluff, GA

Re: Mercy, Justice, Vengeance

Postby Jay Ross on Sun Jul 27, 2014 1:09 pm

Has anyone considered that when Paul was taken outside of the city and stoned such that the people thought that he was dead from the stoning, that he had disobeyed the prompting of the Holy Spirit and had not left the city, even though he had sent his fellow workers away to go to the next place, Paul stayed behind, contrary to what the Holy Spirit had told him to do.

I wonder how many time we get into "trouble" because we are disobedient to the prompting of the Holy Spirit.

The recorded story should remind us not to be disobedient and to promptly obey the prompting of the Holy Spirit.

It is just a thought.
Jay Ross
 
Posts: 1373
Joined: Fri Feb 25, 2011 12:11 am

Re: Mercy, Justice, Vengeance

Postby Abiding in His Word on Sun Jul 27, 2014 1:21 pm

Keith, you are using words that ought not to be used to describe the nature of God's relationship with believers. You are describing God in terms of vengeance, terrible, terrifying, frightening, and One who would willingly plan to kill His own son; purposely inflicting suffering; punishing; avenging, fearful, etc.

Just as the members of the Trinity are in perfect harmony, so too, the attributes of God are in perfect harmony. What is missing in your argument is the wisdom of God in displaying certain attributes in the 1) appropriate manner; 2) in the appropriate situations (3) for an appropriate purpose.

The "fearful" "terrifying" God is used in terms of His enemies not His people. (here are a few; though there are hundreds)

Deu_30:7 "The LORD your God will inflict all these curses on your enemies and on those who hate you, who persecuted you.
Deu_32:31 "Indeed their rock is not like our Rock, Even our enemies themselves judge this.

Deu_33:29 "Blessed are you, O Israel; Who is like you, a people saved by the LORD, Who is the shield of your help And the sword of your majesty! So your enemies will cringe before you, And you will tread upon their high places."

Jos_10:25 Joshua then said to them, "Do not fear or be dismayed! Be strong and courageous, for thus the LORD will do to all your enemies with whom you fight."

Psa_3:7 Arise, O LORD; save me, O my God! For You have smitten all my enemies on the cheek; You have shattered the teeth of the wicked.

Psa_68:21 Surely God will shatter the head of His enemies...

Isa_42:13 The LORD will go forth like a warrior, He will arouse His zeal like a man of war. He will utter a shout, yes, He will raise a war cry. He will prevail against His enemies.

Nah_1:2 A jealous and avenging God is the LORD; The LORD is avenging and wrathful. The LORD takes vengeance on His adversaries, And He reserves wrath for His enemies.

Rom_11:28 From the standpoint of the gospel they are enemies for your sake, but from the standpoint of God's choice they are beloved for the sake of the fathers;

1Co_15:25 For He must reign until He has put all His enemies under His feet.

Php_3:18 For many walk, of whom I often told you, and now tell you even weeping, that they are enemies of the cross of Christ...


And yet Jesus never used these terms to describe the Father...even to unbelievers and sinners. In fact, He called them friends. And the OT God was moved to pity when He heard His people groaning from affliction and oppression. (Judges 2:18) He rescued His people over and over from their enemies.

You must differentiate between God's attributes expressed or demonstrated to either His enemies or His beloved people with whom He likened Himself to their husband who fed them, protected them, loved them, freed them, etc. as well as a mother who birthed them and care for them and hides them in the shadow of His wings.

The overarching message of the gospel is God's unconditional love for His people. God loves because it is His nature to love.

1Jn 4:8 The one who does not love does not know God, for God is love.
User avatar
Abiding in His Word
SITE ADMIN
 
Posts: 28701
Joined: Mon Mar 06, 2006 4:54 pm
Location: SW Florida

Re: Mercy, Justice, Vengeance

Postby keithareilly on Sun Jul 27, 2014 2:40 pm

Abiding,

You have just expressed the first "Christian Correct" opinion I have ever heard. :lol:

Sometimes We forget Philippians 2:12 "... Work out your own salvation in fear and trembling".

I appreciate what I said is not modern; but, it is true.
Peter was so comfortable with Jesus that he actually began to rebuke him (Mathew 16:22).
I think we should remember not to get that comfortable.

Love in Christ, sister,

Keith
keithareilly
Supporting Member
 
Posts: 1680
Joined: Mon Mar 13, 2006 2:48 pm
Location: Mineral Bluff, GA

Re: Mercy, Justice, Vengeance

Postby keithareilly on Sun Jul 27, 2014 3:05 pm

Abiding,

On a more serious note...
Perfect Love casts out fear.
So much so that we should not be afraid to approach the throne of God.

If we do not understand God's Love we cannot approach the throne,
If we do not understand his Throne, we will never understand the depth of love that drives out fear of approaching the throne.

Our God is both fierce and gentle. The depth of His fierceness demonstrates the depth of his gentleness.
In the same way, His terribleness demonstrates the depth of his love.
Why? because as terrible as God can be, he loves us more.

Keith
keithareilly
Supporting Member
 
Posts: 1680
Joined: Mon Mar 13, 2006 2:48 pm
Location: Mineral Bluff, GA

Re: Mercy, Justice, Vengeance

Postby Abiding in His Word on Sun Jul 27, 2014 3:21 pm

keithareilly wrote:Sometimes We forget Philippians 2:12 "... Work out your own salvation in fear and trembling".


And sometimes we forget that..."1Jn 4:18 There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves punishment, and the one who fears is not perfected in love. "

I appreciate what I said is not modern; but, it is true.


True, yes. Context, no.

Peter was so comfortable with Jesus that he actually began to rebuke him (Mathew 16:22).
I think we should remember not to get that comfortable.


Peter was an impetuous man who often didn't think before he spoke as evidenced both here, in the garden when the soldiers approached Jesus and he drew his sword, and when he tried to walk on water. His rebuke was, no doubt, said out of affection for Jesus and denial of the fate He had just mentioned. Today we might say, "don't even think such a thing...."

Jesus knows us and our individual temperaments just as He knew Peter's. :wink:
User avatar
Abiding in His Word
SITE ADMIN
 
Posts: 28701
Joined: Mon Mar 06, 2006 4:54 pm
Location: SW Florida

Re: Mercy, Justice, Vengeance

Postby imirish01 on Sun Jul 27, 2014 4:24 pm

Thank you Jay Ross. I think you have it.

Paul was a man. A man used by God in such a mighty and wonderful way, but he was a man. He sinned and he made mistakes. He did fail to leave the city when told to do so. God covered his failing with continued life, but he was told to leave.

God covers our sins all the time. We do not suffer for each and every sin we commit. His mercy is new every morning. We do suffer for some sins as a way of keeping us from going back and doing them again. It is His long suffering that brings us to repentance. He suffers long with us. He suffered long with Paul. There are Christians who have suffered equal if not more than Paul. Are they too being punished by God for past sins?

We can choose to see God as vengeful and terrible,which are parts of who He is. But, thank God, He is so much more loving and merciful and kind than we can even comprehend. Thank God we do not suffer as we could for our sins.
imirish01
 
Posts: 842
Joined: Mon Sep 15, 2008 10:55 am

Re: Mercy, Justice, Vengeance

Postby keithareilly on Sun Jul 27, 2014 5:10 pm

Abiding,

Sis, I am sorry you don't like the way I said what I have to say.
You're a smart person and I respect your opinion.
I assume since my last post said the rebutal you just gave, we understand each other.

Keith
keithareilly
Supporting Member
 
Posts: 1680
Joined: Mon Mar 13, 2006 2:48 pm
Location: Mineral Bluff, GA

Re: Mercy, Justice, Vengeance

Postby WilliamL on Sun Jul 27, 2014 6:01 pm

"For I will show him how much he must suffer for the sake of my name.”

John 15:19 If ye were of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you. 20 ... The servant is not greater than his lord. If they have persecuted me, they will also persecute you... 21 But all these things will they do unto you for my name's sake, because they know not him that sent me.

Here is how I understand it, tying together things discussed so far:
1) By calling Paul to the ministry of His name, Jesus called him to a life of trial and suffering. So this explains part of the passage Keith quotes.
2) By taking innocent life, even in ignorance, Paul opened himself up to the natural/worldly consequences of his acts. Jesus knew, by calling Paul to His ministry, he was in effect calling him into a double-whammy of suffering. Material sins have material consequences, as we have seen in the life of David. Even when God has forgiven the sins in Spirit, blotting them out of his Book of Life, their material effects persist.
3) So in one sense, "God caused Paul to suffer," as Keith says. But it was not God who inflicted the suffering, the world did that.
4) And the demons. Sins of blood, particularly, create dark places in the soul into which demons can infiltrate, and harass even believers. "...a thorn in the flesh was given to me, a messenger of Satan to buffet me..."
WilliamL
 
Posts: 176
Joined: Wed May 28, 2008 12:13 pm
Location: Sangre de Christo Mountains

Re: Mercy, Justice, Vengeance

Postby keithareilly on Mon Jul 28, 2014 6:36 pm

After some thought I have some questions for the viewers.

1) Do you believe vengeance implies malice or can vengeance be accomplished without malicious intent?

2) God is just, Yet He took the life of Bathsheba's and David's child; how was taking the life of the child just?

3) Do you think the suffering David suffered as a consequence of his sin with Bathsheba qualifies as vengeance for Uriah or must the motive be vengeance for an action to qualify as vengeance?


My answers are:
1) Vengeance can be with or without malice.
2) A creator owns his creation, whatever a creator does with his creation is just, it is his to do with as he pleases.
3) Yes, Vengeance is the act of balancing scales (a repayment balancing the scales but not as in paying a debt). It can be accomplished in part or in full without regard to motive. In other words, whatever helps the scales towards balance. So while David was forgiven his sin and did not have to receive the wages of his sin (death) his actions still had to be offset in the scales. This is the only way for the people to know the King is subject to the law and not above it.

Edited 7/29 3:30pm to add.
"Vengeance is mine sayeth the Lord it is mine to repay." God is faithful to his Word. There is none but God who can hold the King accountable. None to whom Uriah can appeal except God. And God is faithful to his Word. Go back and look at what David did. Uriah slept on his doorstep, refusing to have his wife, out of loyalty to David, the King. David repaid this loyalty with murder and theft of his wife. God is faithful to his Word. We count upon His faithfulness to his Word. Without his faithfulness to his Word, there is no reason for faith in God.

Keith
Last edited by keithareilly on Tue Jul 29, 2014 12:42 pm, edited 7 times in total.
keithareilly
Supporting Member
 
Posts: 1680
Joined: Mon Mar 13, 2006 2:48 pm
Location: Mineral Bluff, GA

Re: Mercy, Justice, Vengeance

Postby daffodyllady on Tue Jul 29, 2014 7:08 am

From the dictionary:

Malice: a desire to cause harm to another person.

I don't think you are using words correctly.
Daffodyllady
Come ye out from among them, and be ye separate, and touch not the unclean thing, and I will recieve you... Abstain from all appearance of evil...Without holiness shall no man see the Lord.
daffodyllady
 
Posts: 4237
Joined: Mon Mar 06, 2006 8:19 am

Re: Mercy, Justice, Vengeance

Postby keithareilly on Tue Jul 29, 2014 7:15 am

Daffodyllady,

I think I am using it correctly. God does not desire to harm us; but sometimes, he does, for the good.

Keith
keithareilly
Supporting Member
 
Posts: 1680
Joined: Mon Mar 13, 2006 2:48 pm
Location: Mineral Bluff, GA

Re: Mercy, Justice, Vengeance

Postby daffodyllady on Tue Jul 29, 2014 1:51 pm

So, He harms us for our own good, against his will?

Look, either God wants to harm us, or He doesn't.

And all things He does, are His will: what He wants to do.
Daffodyllady
Come ye out from among them, and be ye separate, and touch not the unclean thing, and I will recieve you... Abstain from all appearance of evil...Without holiness shall no man see the Lord.
daffodyllady
 
Posts: 4237
Joined: Mon Mar 06, 2006 8:19 am

Re: Mercy, Justice, Vengeance

Postby mark s on Tue Jul 29, 2014 2:43 pm

WilliamL wrote:4) And the demons. Sins of blood, particularly, create dark places in the soul into which demons can infiltrate, and harass even believers.


Hi William,

Where does this idea come from?

"...a thorn in the flesh was given to me, a messenger of Satan to buffet me..."


Since this thorn was never defined or explained, how is it evidence of your previous statement?

I find one other place where this metaphor is used, and that being if the Israelites allowed any of the nations in the land to remain, they would be thorns to them. So if we use Scripture to interpret Scripture, doesn't it make better sense that this "thorn in the flesh" would be the Jews who followed Paul around, harassing him at every turn?

Love in Christ,
Mark
ειπεν αυτη ο ιησους εγω ειμι η αναστασις και η ζωη ο πιστευων εις εμε καν αποθανη ζησεται
. . . saying to her Jesus, I AM the resurrection and the life, the one believing into Me even dying shall live . . .
User avatar
mark s
MODERATOR
 
Posts: 12868
Joined: Tue Oct 17, 2006 11:38 am
Location: Southern California, USA

Re: Mercy, Justice, Vengeance

Postby keithareilly on Tue Jul 29, 2014 6:23 pm

Daffodyllady,

Ezekiel 18:4
“Behold, all souls are Mine; The soul of the father
As well as the soul of the son is Mine; The soul who sins shall die.

Ezekiel 18:23
23 Do I have any pleasure at all that the wicked should die?” says the Lord God, “and not that he should turn from his ways and live?

Verse 4 describes God's will: The soul that sins shall die.
Verse 23 describes God's desire: that we should turn from our sins and live instead of die.
It is God's will that is accomplished, though his will is not necessarily what his heart desires.

Consequently, God does not take pleasure in all his actions.

Malice is desire to harm, it is heart felt . A decision to harm can be without malice, from the head, not the heart.


Keith
keithareilly
Supporting Member
 
Posts: 1680
Joined: Mon Mar 13, 2006 2:48 pm
Location: Mineral Bluff, GA

Re: Mercy, Justice, Vengeance

Postby Exit40 on Wed Jul 30, 2014 8:08 am

keithareilly wrote:
Consequently, God does not take pleasure in all his actions.

Malice is desire to harm, it is heart felt . A decision to harm can be without malice, from the head, not the heart.


Keith


A legal term comes to mind, malice of forethought. In the sense of discipline, our Father cannot, will not do this. He does not harden his heart to do His will, He softens it, to Love us through it, knowing the outcome already.

' With a thundering velvet hand, He shapes our souls '

God Bless You

David
Eph 2:8 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God

T'was Grace that taught my heart to fear.
And Grace, my fears relieved.
How precious did that Grace appear
The hour I first believed.
User avatar
Exit40
Supporting Member
 
Posts: 8880
Joined: Mon Mar 06, 2006 6:46 am

Re: Mercy, Justice, Vengeance

Postby keithareilly on Wed Jul 30, 2014 9:22 am

David,

I did not say God hardens his heart.

I pointed out scripture that shows His will toward the wicked is not the same as His heart's desire.
This is clear evidence, He has not hardened His heart. No malice whatsoever.

Thanks for joining in,

Keith
keithareilly
Supporting Member
 
Posts: 1680
Joined: Mon Mar 13, 2006 2:48 pm
Location: Mineral Bluff, GA

Re: Mercy, Justice, Vengeance

Postby Exit40 on Wed Jul 30, 2014 9:39 am

Hi Keith. I know you didn't, sorry for the implication. I think that may have been for me, something I have been dealing with. Said not of our Father, not of myself either, but maybe a wee bit of the way have looked at some things in life. I'm getting a pretty good look at the Trust ... to be found ... in Hope.

Empowers me to dance in this hurricane.

God Bless You

David
Eph 2:8 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God

T'was Grace that taught my heart to fear.
And Grace, my fears relieved.
How precious did that Grace appear
The hour I first believed.
User avatar
Exit40
Supporting Member
 
Posts: 8880
Joined: Mon Mar 06, 2006 6:46 am

Re: Mercy, Justice, Vengeance

Postby keithareilly on Wed Jul 30, 2014 9:42 am

No problem bro,

Someone else must have needed to see it.

Keith
keithareilly
Supporting Member
 
Posts: 1680
Joined: Mon Mar 13, 2006 2:48 pm
Location: Mineral Bluff, GA

Re: Mercy, Justice, Vengeance

Postby keithareilly on Wed Jul 30, 2014 10:28 am

You know David,

This topic is really about trust. God keeps his word, All of his word. Whether it be justice, vengeance, mercy, love, charity, etc. He keeps his word. If He did not keep his word somewhere along the line, He would not be trustworthy and there would be no reason to have faith in him. But he does keep his word, He is Merciful and Just and vengeful, charitable, loving, etc. all at the same time. Sometimes, it is hard to understand how He can do seemingly contradictory things simultaneously. That is what this topic is about; God keeping His word. Even though in the minds of men He cannot keep contradictory promises at the same time; He does.


All scripture point to Christ, The WORD became flesh, God's promise manifested. He Keeps His WORD. Every promise He makes shall be manifested. Manifested, as in a manifest, everything shall be delivered. He is trustworthy. We can Trust Him.

All things, Mercy, Love, Justice, Vengeance, Charity, etc. work for the good of those who love the Lord. Even if we are sinful and our body is turned over to Satan, it is for our good, the purpose of our souls being saved.


Keith
keithareilly
Supporting Member
 
Posts: 1680
Joined: Mon Mar 13, 2006 2:48 pm
Location: Mineral Bluff, GA

Re: Mercy, Justice, Vengeance

Postby WilliamL on Sun Aug 03, 2014 9:15 am

mark s wrote:
WilliamL wrote: 4) And the demons. Sins of blood, particularly, create dark places in the soul into which demons can infiltrate, and harass even believers.


Hi William, Where does this idea come from?

Do evil desires and deeds bring our souls toward the light, or into darkness? Do evil spirits come to the Christ-light in us, or do they seek out our darkest places? How many believers have sins of blood (e.g. abortion, innocent bloodshed, sexual perversion, etc.) from their past that have been forgiven, but the believers are still plagued by them – either physically, emotionally, or both? Ever heard of the herpes simplex virus, most often spread by sexual immorality? Did God create such viruses, or are they demonic in origin?

For those among you who seek a deeper understanding of how demons first infiltrate, and later, if able, possess souls, the best source I know of is Malachi Martin's Hostage to the Devil: The Possession and Exorcism of Five Americans. (Used copies cheap on Amazon.) Martin presents detailed case histories, including transcripts of tape-recorded exorcisms in which demons brag about how they seduce. Not for the faint of heart.
"...a thorn in the flesh was given to me, a messenger of Satan to buffet me..."

Since this thorn was never defined or explained, how is it evidence of your previous statement?
I find one other place where this metaphor is used, and that being if the Israelites allowed any of the nations in the land to remain, they would be thorns to them. So if we use Scripture to interpret Scripture, doesn't it make better sense that this "thorn in the flesh" would be the Jews who followed Paul around, harassing him at every turn?

So your reasoning tells you that for all of the many Jews who persecuted Paul in many different cities he visited, he chose to speak of them as a (one) thorn, a (one) messenger of Satan? And the Corinthians would have readily understood this?
And when Paul wrote again in Galatians 4:13-15 –

Ye know how through infirmity of the flesh I preached the gospel unto you at the first. And my temptation [trial] which was in my flesh ye despised not, nor rejected; but received me as an angel of God, [even] as Christ Jesus. ...for I bear you record, that, if [it had been] possible, ye would have plucked out your own eyes, and have given them to me.

– was he speaking about his Jewish persecutors?
WilliamL
 
Posts: 176
Joined: Wed May 28, 2008 12:13 pm
Location: Sangre de Christo Mountains

Re: Mercy, Justice, Vengeance

Postby keithareilly on Sun Aug 10, 2014 6:29 pm

Interesting that no one answered the questions I posed earlier.

Most Christians have no problems with God chastising us.
Yet, chastise is just another word for punish.
It carries different connotations; but, like vengenace, it is a punishment.
No problem with being punished if we call it "chastise"; but, a serious problem if we call punishement "vengeance".

Interesting.

Keith
keithareilly
Supporting Member
 
Posts: 1680
Joined: Mon Mar 13, 2006 2:48 pm
Location: Mineral Bluff, GA

Re: Mercy, Justice, Vengeance

Postby Ready1 on Sun Aug 10, 2014 10:37 pm

keithareilly

There are things to be learned only through suffering. A couple of verses come to mind...

(MKJV) Ro 8:32 Truly He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things?

(ISV) Is:53:10 Yet the LORD was willing to crush him, and he made him suffer. Although you make his soul an offering for sin, He will see his offspring, and he will prolong his days, and the will of the LORD will triumph in his hand.

(MKJV) Heb 5:8 though being a Son, yet He learned obedience by the things which He suffered.

(ESV) Heb 8:12 If you are left without discipline, in which all have participated, then you are illegitimate children and not sons.



Somehow the Lord knows what we all need to test us and refine us. We learn things that we never would have known had we not had suffering. Even Jesus, the God of creation and master of the universe, learned something from suffering. So whatever word you use to designate suffering, the truth is that God knows us and He knows the testing which will bring about His will in our lives.
Just observing.

E.
Ready1
 
Posts: 2093
Joined: Mon Mar 06, 2006 10:14 am
Location: Central Cal

Re: Mercy, Justice, Vengeance

Postby keithareilly on Mon Aug 11, 2014 6:38 am

Ready1,

I understand what you have said.

What I am surprised about is that when God does punish us, when he teaches us what we have done to others,
placing us in their shoes, we do not see that he is avenging the wrong we have done while at the same time being merciful to us and at the same time loving us by teaching us what we need to understand.

God is true to his word. Even if that word is vengeance.

I find it curious that Christians refuse to accept that his punishment, even when meant for our edification, is also vengeance for the wrong we have done others. For some reason, there seems to be an obstacle to accepting that truth.
It is acceptable to be chastised, it is acceptable for God to take vengeance on our behalf, yet, it does not seem to be acceptable for God to avenge others when we have wronged them.

God is not a respecter of persons. God avenged Uriah against David, a man after God's own heart. David was forgiven but David was still punished. Uriah was still avenged. David divided Uriah and Bathsheba from each other. As punishment, God divided David's family.

In the example that I used starting this thread, God reassures Ananias by telling him what Saul must suffer after Ananias expresses his concern about the things Saul has done to Christians. In so doing:
1) God was true to his word Mercy,
2) God was true to his word Justice,
3) God was true to his word Vengeance.

All things work together for the good of those that love the Lord.
All things, including vengeance, be it on our behalf or for others.
I think Paul's life is a really good example of this.


Consider: if God's vengeance can accomplish what Paul's life accomplished, is it not best to leave vengeance to God.

Keith
keithareilly
Supporting Member
 
Posts: 1680
Joined: Mon Mar 13, 2006 2:48 pm
Location: Mineral Bluff, GA

Re: Mercy, Justice, Vengeance

Postby Jericho on Mon Aug 11, 2014 7:37 am

keithareilly wrote:Interesting that no one answered the questions I posed earlier.

Most Christians have no problems with God chastising us.
Yet, chastise is just another word for punish.
It carries different connotations; but, like vengenace, it is a punishment.
No problem with being punished if we call it "chastise"; but, a serious problem if we call punishement "vengeance".

Interesting.

Keith


I've not been following the thread too closely, but can you list the instances in the New Testament where God is chastising someone?
Formerly SwordOfGideon
User avatar
Jericho
 
Posts: 4441
Joined: Fri Aug 01, 2008 5:05 am
Location: Tx

Re: Mercy, Justice, Vengeance

Postby keithareilly on Mon Aug 11, 2014 8:05 am

Jericho,

I don't think the writers aired their dirty laundry in public. Indeed we admonished not to do so.
So, here as verses about being chastised (Disciplined).

Hebrews 12:4-11

4 In your struggle against sin you have not yet resisted to the point of shedding your blood. 5 And have you forgotten the exhortation that addresses you as sons?

“My son, do not regard lightly the discipline of the Lord, nor be weary when reproved by him.
6For the Lord disciplines the one he loves, and chastises every son whom he receives.”

7 It is for discipline that you have to endure. God is treating you as sons. For what son is there whom his father does not discipline? 8 If you are left without discipline, in which all have participated, then you are illegitimate children and not sons. 9 Besides this, we have had earthly fathers who disciplined us and we respected them. Shall we not much more be subject to the Father of spirits and live? 10 For they disciplined us for a short time as it seemed best to them, but he disciplines us for our good, that we may share his holiness. 11 For the moment all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant, but later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.


I could use Acts 4-5, Ananias and Sopphira, but they were made an example via death for lying to the Holy Spirit. Therefore, they are recorded in scripture for teaching how serious we need to be about sin. Theirs is an extreme case and not a good for example of chastisement. But, it does get across the point.

I could point out that those who continue in a sin are to be cast out of the church and turned over to Satan so their souls may be saved. 1Corr5:5



I will say this to you. Do not be afraid that God will abandon us for our sins. Christ died while we were yet sinners. So we have not been abandoned. The entire point of punishment is for life not death. There have been times in my life the only reason I was sure God loved me was because he was punishing me. It can be difficult to believe God still loves us when we are punished, but the verse I quoted addresses that. We know we are sons because our father cares enough about us to punish us.

Part of the point of this thread is that even when that punishment is clearly vengeance, we are not abandoned, not under God's wrath. Look back at David again, David was forgiven, It says so right in the scriptures. Yet He suffered the rest of his life for what he did. And God calls David a man after God's own heart. Look at Moses, he was not allowed to enter the promised land Yet, he was still on the mountain top with Christ.

Keith
keithareilly
Supporting Member
 
Posts: 1680
Joined: Mon Mar 13, 2006 2:48 pm
Location: Mineral Bluff, GA

Re: Mercy, Justice, Vengeance

Postby Exit40 on Mon Aug 11, 2014 8:31 am

keithareilly wrote:I find it curious that Christians refuse to accept that his punishment, even when meant for our edification, is also vengeance for the wrong we have done others. For some reason, there seems to be an obstacle to accepting that truth.
It is acceptable to be chastised, it is acceptable for God to take vengeance on our behalf, yet, it does not seem to be acceptable for God to avenge others when we have wronged them.

Keith


Hi Keith. Well, put that way it makes a lot of sense. Maybe I have been thinking about vengeance in a purely human manner. It just does not sit right with me to be that way, or to do so. Attributing to God my definition, or way of being is ... limiting Him. He does not see only my picture, but the whole album, and how it all relates to the whole. Seems to kinda ... maybe ... take away what I might consider my own specialness with Him. I should look at it more like, well, if it works for me it must work for all the others the same way. Or it doesn't work at all. And that simply is not possible, with Him. Yes, vengeance is His, alone. Maybe a better human term would be, vigilantism, applied to the way we might proceed. We are hardly righteous enough for true vengeance.

God Bless You

David
Eph 2:8 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God

T'was Grace that taught my heart to fear.
And Grace, my fears relieved.
How precious did that Grace appear
The hour I first believed.
User avatar
Exit40
Supporting Member
 
Posts: 8880
Joined: Mon Mar 06, 2006 6:46 am

Re: Mercy, Justice, Vengeance

Postby keithareilly on Mon Aug 11, 2014 8:47 am

David said
He does not see only my picture, but the whole album, and how it all relates to the whole.


Yep!

Try to look at what God caused Paul to suffer from the point of view of the Christians and their loved ones whom Saul harmed. God, through Pauls' suffering, did not leave any room in the hearts of those Saul wronged to be against Paul even after what he did to them when he was Saul. God is working to make us all one.

IMO: Paul's suffering for the benefit of the whole would have satisfied the desire for vengeance in the hearts of those he wronged; thus eliminating divisions within the body of Christ. God should be praised for his wisdom for using vengeance as a tool for healing.

Keith
keithareilly
Supporting Member
 
Posts: 1680
Joined: Mon Mar 13, 2006 2:48 pm
Location: Mineral Bluff, GA

Re: Mercy, Justice, Vengeance

Postby Jericho on Mon Aug 11, 2014 9:19 am

Thank you Keith, perhaps this is all semantics but there does seem to be a difference between chastisement and punishment. Chastisement is spoken of in a positive way, for example "the Lord disciplines the one he loves, and he chastens everyone he accepts as his son." (Heb 12:6). It has connotations of instructing or correcting and does not involve actual physical torment. Punishment on the other hand has negative connotations, and can include physical pain. For example, “And these will go away into everlasting punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.” (Mat 25:46) and "He will punish those who do not know God and do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus. They will be punished with everlasting destruction and shut out from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of his might." (2Th 1:8-9 NIV). Punishment seems to be associated with revenge and vengeance. As Christians we should be exempt from God's punishment. I am not sure we can look to the Old Testament as examples of chastisement\punishment because we live under a different covenant now and are under grace.
Formerly SwordOfGideon
User avatar
Jericho
 
Posts: 4441
Joined: Fri Aug 01, 2008 5:05 am
Location: Tx

Re: Mercy, Justice, Vengeance

Postby WilliamL on Mon Aug 11, 2014 9:24 am

keithareilly wrote:Interesting that no one answered the questions I posed earlier.

For me, that is because you did such a good job of answering them yourself.
WilliamL
 
Posts: 176
Joined: Wed May 28, 2008 12:13 pm
Location: Sangre de Christo Mountains

Next

Return to General Bible Study & Debate

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests