“Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave it to the wrath of God, for it is written, “Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord.”... Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.” - Romans 12:19, 21

Every child goes through stages of development as they grow up. They often have the same childish thoughts and feelings that they later give up. Paul said that when he was a child he thought and spoke like a child, but then he grew up and gave up childish ways. One of the most typical childish reactions is, “I did this because he first did this to me.” It seems to be the typical excuse of almost any child who gets in a tussle with another.

The problem is, often we never grow out of our childish ways. Much of being a Christian is having the proper reactions towards others. We, like Christ, are not to threaten when we suffer, nor do we revile in return for revile. We do not revenge ourselves, but instead we pray for those we persecute us and love our enemies. We do not repay evil for evil. We give thought to do what is honorable in the sight of all. We are not to be overcome with their evil and fall into the temptation to respond with evil, but instead we are to be like our Lord and Savior and overcome their evil with our godly reactions.

Stop being petulant little children in your reactions. Harsh words do not demand harsh words in return. It’s no long and eye for an eye, but love is the command of the times. Give up your childish ways and show Christ living in you!