Deuteronomy 32:41 If I whet my glittering sword, and mine hand take hold on judgment; I will render vengeance to mine enemies, and will reward them that hate me.
A simplistic view of vengeance involves the retribution of an evil deed. The first (Genesis 4:15) and last (Jude 7) mention of the word vengeance substantiates this definition. The Bible uses words like recompence (Deuteronomy 32:35), reward (Deuteronomy 32:41), punishments (Psalm 149:7), avenge (Jeremiah 46:10), revenge (Ezekiel 25:15), and repay (Romans 12:19) as descriptive words for vengeance. With this in mind, it is clear that vengeance is the just punishment as a consequence upon those who violate the laws of God. It is not the dispensing of wrath without cause but is specific punishment exacted for specific crimes committed.
- (For children): God punishes evil (Isaiah 13:11a). In Noah’s time, God saw that the wickedness of man was great and decided to send a flood (Genesis 6:5-7). Yet, He is so loving, He gave the people 120 years to repent while Noah built the ark and preached. Only eight people made it into the ark (Genesis 6:8-10; 1 Peter 3:20).
- (For everyone): How is God just in His execution of vengeance? Why is it so important to note that vengeance is punishment for evil doing? Does God ever mete out judgment to the innocent?
- Why is it dangerous for people to reject the concept that God is to be feared? Why should an understanding of vengeance make the wicked fearful?
- Ask the Lord to help you tell others about God’s vengeance.
- Ask the Lord to keep you from His vengeance.