September 13

Jeremiah 11:18-20

“But you, O Lord of hosts, who judge righteously, who try the heart and the mind, let me see your retribution upon them, for to you I have committed my cause.” vs. 20

Jeremiah’s life had been threatened by some people from his hometown and he didn’t like it! They evidently had taken offense at things he had said and were scheming to erase his name from the memory of his people. But Jeremiah believes that the Lord, the Righteous One to whom he had made a commitment, won’t let them get away with their plots. And more than that he wants to see the Lord’s retribution upon them–a desire that most of us can understand, because we’d like that sort of thing too. When someone has done us wrong, by breaking vows or being unfaithful, or by some other nasty words or actions, we would like nothing more than to see them brought low. Vengeance is as natural to us as breathing, and we love to see the bad guys beaten down. Unfortunately we have not been called to be followers of Jeremiah! Instead we have committed our cause to Jesus, and the whole world knows what he prayed would happen to his enemies. There’s nothing about revenge or retribution–all we get is his words from the cross, “Father, forgive them for they do not know what they are doing!” It’s perfectly fine for us to be honest about the vengeful feelings that churn around in our guts! They come on their own–but they don’t have to remain!

Thought for the Day: Against whom have I harbored vengeful feelings?

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