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But take heart!! We have all the comfort and joy we need to follow the Christian path to the end. We have Jesus, and we have promises like that of 2 Thessalonians 1. There will be payback; God will punish those who persecute us if we turn the other cheek and pray for them. If our persecutors don’t change their hearts and lives, they will be punished for eternity. God will avenge us, if need be.


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Hello Readers, hope all’s well. Today I present another End Times post.

Who out there feels harassed, hated, and persecuted by the world for Christian beliefs?? This harassment takes different forms, and can be extreme depending on where you live. Read End Times Part 90: Persecution World to see what I mean. There are countries in this world today where being a Christian can get you killed.

A look through the Bible shows us that this has always been the case, really. Jesus Himself told us the world would hate us because of His Name (Matthew 10:22). And that has remained true from when Jesus walked the earth, all the way to today. So this topic is addressed a few times in the New Testament.

But each time, we’re taught to endure it. The New Testament teaches us to turn the other cheek, and to Forgive. To give up any revenge we may be entitled to, and act like our Father in Heaven by Forgiving as He has Forgiven us. And we can rest easy, knowing that even if we give up our vengeance, the LORD will avenge us if need be.

If anyone does not REPENT! of their sins—including persecuting us—and change their hearts and lives, they will be punished for eternity when Jesus Christ returns in all His Glory. That is when the LORD will avenge us—the Bible makes this explicitly clear. And that day is closer than ever before. So even though we face horrible opposition in these End Times, our pain is almost over.

We have no need to worry about revenge, the LORD will avenge us, if needed. But beyond that, there are practical reasons for not seeking revenge too. So these are the topics for today. Let’s get right into it.

It’s Right for God to Pay them back

Today’s New Testament passage is from 2 Thessalonians 1. This interesting passage points out that it’s only right for the LORD to repay those who harass and persecute us for our Christian beliefs. In other words, the LORD is justified in taking vengeance, which He will do on the Day He returns.

(4) That’s why we ourselves are bragging about you in God’s churches. We tell about your endurance and faithfulness in all the harassments and trouble that you have put up with. (5) This shows that God’s judgment is right, and that you will be considered worthy of God’s kingdom for which you are suffering. (6) After all, it’s right for God to pay back the ones making trouble for you with trouble (7) and to pay back you who are having trouble with relief along with us. This payback will come when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven with his powerful angels. (8) He will give justice with blazing fire to those who don’t recognize God and don’t obey the good news of our Lord Jesus. (9) They will pay the penalty of eternal destruction away from the Lord’s presence and away from his mighty glory. (10) This will happen when he comes on that day to receive honor from his holy people and to be admired by everyone who has believed—and our testimony to you was believed.

2 Thessalonians 1:4-10 (CEB)

There are many passages in the New Testament about leaving room for the LORD’s Wrath. But here, in 2 Thessalonians 1, is one of the passages about the LORD’s Wrath.

Of course the LORD will pay back those who persecute us and mean us harm. Of course the LORD will avenge us, and destroy those who deny the Truth that Jesus Christ is the Messiah. So we can take comfort in this promise as we await the Second Coming of Jesus. There will be payback; there will be Justice.

To turn the other cheek and pray for our enemies who persecute us are some of the hardest things we could ever do. This, and other reasons, are why Christianity is the toughest path we can choose in this life. The Christian life is a good life, the best life, but it’s not an easy life. Our Faith forbids us from taking many of the easy, tempting roads we would otherwise want to—like the path of revenge.

But take heart!! We have all the comfort and joy we need to follow the Christian path to the end. We have Jesus, and we have promises like that of 2 Thessalonians 1. There will be payback; God will punish those who persecute us if we turn the other cheek and pray for them. If our persecutors don’t change their hearts and lives, they will be punished for eternity. God will avenge us, if need be.

God will avenge us. Does that sound familiar?? Of course it does, that comes straight from Romans 12:19, a famous New Testament verse. Revenge is not for us, not our jurisdiction. But God will take revenge for us if our “enemies” never REPENT! and change their hearts and lives. We can trust, believe, and have Faith in that. God will repay all the evildoers who harm us, if they don’t REPENT!

(19) Don’t try to get revenge for yourselves, my dear friends, but leave room for God’s wrath. It is written, “Revenge belongs to me; I will pay it back, says the Lord”.

Romans 12:19 (CEB)

The “revenge belongs to me part” is in turn quoted from Deuteronomy 32:35.

It’s hard not to think about revenge, when we’ve been wronged. Our natural instincts—our sinful flesh nature—scream at us to get payback. Get payback to soothe our sense of an injustice. Get payback so the persecutor won’t target us again or won’t see us as easy prey. Get payback to ease our pain by spreading the hurt around.

But revenge is the easy route, the obvious solution. The flesh always urges us to take those easy routes, the quick and obvious solutions. These are the things that Satan urges us toward, what he tempts us with. Jesus teaches a different way to go, a different way to act. He teaches us to take the hard route: Turn the other cheek, and pray and bless those who persecute us. Taking this higher road means we have to overcome the low urges of our sinful flesh nature, which is difficult, but well worth it.

Still, there will be times when it just feels too damn difficult to turn the other cheek and bless those who persecute us. At times like this, we must remember the LORD’s promise in 2 Thessalonians 1, Romans 12:19, and other passages. And that promise is: “Don’t worry about revenge. I’ll take care of it. I’ll repay everyone who wrongs you (and doesn’t REPENT!), you’ll see.”

We can put our full Faith in the promises of the LORD. What more could we need??

Turn Enemies to Friends

For the practical-minded, there’s also an excellent practical reason not to take revenge. Have you ever heard the saying, “I destroy my enemies when I turn them into friends”?? It’s a famous saying attributed to a few different people in history, including the U.S. president Abraham Lincoln.

In his book The 48 Laws of Power, Robert Greene recounts the instance when Lincoln is thought to have said this.

In a speech Abraham Lincoln delivered at the height of the Civil War, he referred to the Southerners as fellow human beings who were in error. An elderly lady chastised him for not calling them irreconcilable enemies who must be destroyed. “Why, madam,” Lincoln replied, “do I not destroy my enemies when I make them my friends?”

― Robert Greene, The 48 Laws of Power

https://www.goodreads.com/quotes/7390516-in-a-speech-abraham-lincoln-delivered-at-the-height-of

Whoever was the first to speak this phrase is irrelevant. This saying contains incredible Wisdom no matter who said it first. Think about it ….

Think about it. If you’re in a conflict of any size—from an argument to full-scale warfare—the best and most efficient way to resolve that conflict is to make peace. To turn enemies into friends. Ending hostilities through peace preserves and protects more precious resources (LIVES, time, energy, money, etc.). The faster you can make peace, the more of your resources you protect. And if you can turn enemies into friends when you make peace, that’s even better!! Now you have hopes for a brighter future with less conflict.

So there’s no better way to resolve a conflict than making peace, and turning enemies into friends. It’s the best and most efficient way for everyone involved.

So there is real, practical Wisdom in praying for those who persecute us like Jesus taught in Matthew 5. Jesus taught this so that we would be more Forgiving, like God our Father is Forgiving. But praying for those who persecute us also involves the practical tactic of turning enemies into friends. Can you see how??

(44) But I say to you, love your enemies and pray for those who harass you (45) so that you will be acting as children of your Father who is in heaven. He makes the sun rise on both the evil and the good and sends rain on both the righteous and the unrighteous. (46) If you love only those who love you, what reward do you have? Don’t even the tax collectors do the same? […] (48) Therefore, just as your heavenly Father is complete in showing love to everyone, so also you must be complete.

Matthew 5:44-46, 48 (CEB)

When we have a conflict with someone, what could be a better outcome than the person relenting and seeing things our way?? What better outcome could there be than that person having a change of heart??

When we pray for our “enemies,” we don’t pray to God thanking Him for the harassment and persecution. We pray that God will move in our “enemies” lives in a big way. So big that they will wake up and understand why what they do to others is wrong. Then they can REPENT! and be Forgiven by God, same as anyone else who turns to the LORD in humble sincerity for Forgiveness.

Since it’s not God’s Desire that anyone should die in sin, unsaved, this enemies-into-friends outcome is the one we should pray for in all conflicts. God’s Forgiveness is for everyone who believes in Him, so it should be our honest desire to Glorify Him by leading as many people to Him as we can. This must include our enemies. There’s always Hope for people.

So let go of all thoughts of revenge against “enemies.” Like it says in 2 Thessalonians 1:6 and elsewhere, let God worry about the revenge. If it’s justified He will do what is needed, and we can take comfort in that promise if we must. We know that God will do what He promised, including paying back those who persecute us. But revenge is His Right, not ours.

So we must be good Christians and pray for our ‘enemies’ instead; even in these painful and dangerous End Times, when the world opposes us so vehemently. Pray for them, pray that they will wake up to the error of their ways and turn to the LORD while they still have time. If we keep on praying for this, we just might turn our enemies into friends.

And don’t forget that if we turn enemies into friends, our enemies disappear and we gain more friends. So tell me, what could be better than that??


Well that’s all for today. If you enjoyed today’s post, be sure to Subscribe using the link below. And please consider Supporting My Blog using the Tip Jar. Any amount is much appreciated!

Until next time, be strong and do good!

Your new best friend in Christ,

99:9

<<<EXALT THE LORD OUR GOD AND WORSHIP AT HIS HOLY HILL; FOR THE LORD OUR GOD IS HOLY>>>


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One comment on “Do Not Fear the End Times Part 105: The Coming Payback

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