I remember sitting at a Starbucks once and hearing two guys having a very heated discussion. One gentleman had a blog and he had written something scathing about the other guy, who apparently had a lot of money. As their dialogue became more animated, the rich man threatened the blogger, and he looked at him and said, “I’m the kind of man who spends ninety cents to get your ten cents.” In other words, he was letting him know that he would stop at nothing to get even and “pay him back” for the slander. Biblically-speaking, this conversation reminded me of Lamech, an Old Testament figure who is famous for his “song of the sword,” which is essentially an ode to vengeance. While the Lord had sworn an oath to the world that anyone who sought revenge on Cain (who committed the first murder against his brother Abel) would be avenged seven-fold, Lamech made the assertion that, “If Cain is avenged seven times, then Lamech seventy-seven times.” Put differently, he was saying that whoever messed with him would suffer so much violence and vengeance that they would wish they had never dared to start. Though He didn’t have to, I believe God drew attention to this man’s character to teach us a lesson about the types of people so bent on revenge that they will stop at nothing to see it carried out. While there are still many of these “Lamechs” wreaking havoc in the world today, you, as a servant of Christ, are not one of them.
My friend, as a disciple of Jesus and one who walks in His easy rhythms of grace, He has set you free from the need to take revenge. Though others may tear you down and seek to destroy your name and reputation, you can find peace in knowing that the Lord “has your back.” As natural as it is to want to get even with the ones who harm you, your steadfast Savior is trustworthy, and He is coming to your defense, even if you can’t see what He’s doing. In a time like the present, when emotions run deep and people are lashing out in frustration, He is causing everything — even the most bitter betrayal — to strengthen your soul, fortify your spirit, and make you more like Him in attitude, outlook, and character.