These are my insights from Deadly Revenge Bible study. I'd love to have you tell me yours in the comment section or by email. Thanks! Gail
1. Unforgiveness grows into bitterness, and one of its many "bitter fruits" is vengeful thoughts and sometimes actions. How do each of the verses below emphasize the damage we do to ourselves when we become bitter.
2 Corinthians 2:10,11:
When we fail to forgive, Satan is able to work two ways:
1. Causing us to become bitter
2. Causing the repentant offender to become hopeless
Satan is more interested in messing with Christians than with unbelievers, and unforgiveness gives Satan a "foothold" just as holding on to anger does ("And don’t sin by letting anger control you.' Don’t let the sun go down while you are still angry, 27 for anger gives a foothold to the devil." Ephesians 4:26-27, NLT)
Imagine a deceptive salesman comes to your house using high-pressure techniques to get his foot inside your door. Once inside, he convinces you to buy his harmful product without telling how much it will actually cost. This is one way to illustrate giving Satan a "foothold" in our lives.
I love the word pictures of Scripture. God knows we need to visualize things to understand them. Can't you imagine a root growing in an unforgiving heart, strangling truth and love.
1 John 2:9-11:
The darkness in these verses is especially dark when it turns to revenge as it did in the true story mentioned in the introduction.
2. Vengeful attitudes can take subtle forms. That's why God sets high standards for thoughts, deeds and prayer.
Proverbs 24:17-18: When someone has harmed us, it's hard not to feel like they "have it coming" when something bad happens to them, but God warns us against this. We might not think of this as vengeance, but it is.
God always calls us beyond our human understanding and logic to His wisdom and truth. We can only accomplish what He asks when we call on His power.