December 4th, 2023

5 Godly Ways to Treat Your Enemies When Revenge is Tempting


No Weapon Formed

When the Lord is for you, even when your enemies set out to destroy you, they will fail. That’s right! When God is on your side, people cannot destroy you. They just don’t have that kind of power.

“What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us?” Romans 8:31.

Just ask David. Twice Saul set out to kill him – and twice did he fail. Now, there were more than two times listed that Saul tried killing David; I’m referring to the times that he actually gathered his men and went on a manhunt for David. Not only did he fail both times, but the tables were turned in each instance, and David was given the opportunity to kill him instead.

Show Mercy, Even in Your Might

difficult peopleIn 1 Samuel chapters 24 and 26, David is given the chance to kill Saul, once by his own sword. But, he decided to allow God the vengeance that he would have taken. He allowed himself to heed the conviction of the Lord.

And he said unto his men, The Lord forbid that I should do this thing unto my master, the Lord’s anointed, to stretch forth my hand against him, seeing he is the anointed of the Lord.” 1 Samuel 24:6. “But David said to Abishai, Destroy him not: for who can stretch forth his hand against the Lord’s anointed, and be guiltless?” 1 Samuel 26:9

Yes, I’m sure it was tough for David not to harm Saul, initially. I mean, he only sought to take the man’s life, even after David had left the king’s presence altogether. And, even after he apologized and said he was done, Saul continued to seek after David’s life.

Yep, after the first time David spared his life, Saul gave a good ol’ sob story about how he knew David was chosen by God and how he’d be cool from then on out **insert violins here** (1 Samuel 24:16-22). Yeah… that didn’t last long. As I mentioned, he tried again in chapter 26. He even went out into the wilderness in search of David.

What I admired most about David in those situations was that he was sensitive to the Lord’s prompting not to kill Saul – and he ultimately left Saul’s demise in God’s hands.

So, What’s the Play Call?

So many of us have the ammo and opportunity to destroy those who have tried to destroy us. Whether it be an ex-friend or an ex-boyfriend/girlfriend. It could be a coworker that has shared too much “tea” and now they are against you. Whatever the case may be, God is calling you to let Him handle it and them.

Here are a few things to keep in mind when your enemies are at your mercy:

  1. Let God fight for you. When God handles our situations and fights our battles, the results are fail-proof. Our Playbook says in Exodus 14:14, “The Lord shall fight for you, and ye shall hold your peace.”
  2. Shut up! Sorry if it seems harsh, but sometimes that’s the only way to win – to keep our mouths closed and off of the situation. Just as our previous point’s Playbook reference says, “ye shall hold your peace.”
  3. Watch your temper! For some of us, we are like a remote… all of our buttons are on display. But for some, only certain people know the passcode to our anger. Either way, be careful not to give others that kind of power over you. Had David let his temper and the thought of what Saul set out to do get the best of him, he would have had Saul’s blood on his hands, and God angry with him. “Wherefore, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath.” James 1:19
  4. When God handles it, there is no need for revenge. If you’d just allow God the space to handle that enemy, He’ll do it. He’s just waiting on you to step aside and out of His way. “Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord.”
  5. Trust God! Seems simple enough, but at times, it may seem easier to just handle “them” yourself. If you truly trust the Lord, you will let Him take care of that enemy. And He will do it, no matter how unfavorable it looks. Our Playbook says to “Trust the Lord with all thine heart, and lean not unto thine own understanding.” Proverbs 3:5

Let God fight those battles for you! Know that as long as you allow Him to be on your front lines, no enemy can come against you and win.

Alecia M. White
Author, blogger, lover of coffee, and all things Jesus. By profession, Alecia is a teacher and administrator. She recently published her first book "The Thing Is...", a poignant look at suffering and endurance. She is privileged to share her love for Christ through her writing.
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