I recently noticed a lot of memes and poster on social media that at first glance I sort of liked but then when I got to the end or after a second of thinking about it I realized that, despite my initial impression, the message was not How a Christian should think. Some of them started out giving a good message but then the last few words twisted the meaning such that instead of saying one thing it actually said something a little different. One such example:
Don’t try to get even (revenge) if someone does you wrong. Sit back and let karma do its thing. Those that did you wrong will get it all back. If you are lucky, God will let you watch.
Well, in a way, this initially seems to be saying: Don’t try to get revenge. But, the message is not of forgiveness, but instead it gives a message of revenge. If one forgives, there is no need for revenge. Waiting for someone that did you wrong to get wrong done to them IS revenge. It shows that the person that thinks they want to watch someone get done to them what they did to you is a vengeful attitude. God doesn’t want us to have a vengeful spirit and to hope or eagerly anticipate seeing someone suffer, regardless of how they treated others.
Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but [rather] give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance [is] mine; I will repay, saith the Lord. Romans 12:19
Not rendering evil for evil, or railing for railing: but contrariwise blessing; knowing that ye are thereunto called, that ye should inherit a blessing. 1 Peter 3:9
Thou shalt not avenge, nor bear any grudge against the children of thy people, but thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself: I [am] the LORD. Leviticus 19:18
Yes, God says that He will take care of vengeance, but He doesn’t say that so we can sit and wait to see it. He doesn’t want us wishing evil for others, regardless of how they have done us,; He wants us to forgive and bless them. It is all about OUR hearts. We cannot serve Him properly wishing evil for others. Doing so takes our focus off of God and puts our minds in a place of hate, not love.
And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you. Ephesians 4:32
I have also seen a lot of memes that say:
I have always given up things for others but from now on I am only going to worry about doing what makes me happy.
Uhhh, I think maybe people need to understand more about what Christ tried to show us all. That He lived His life as a life of sacrifice. He suffered for others. He didn’t do what He wanted to do for Himself. He did what God wanted and He gave all so that we can be saved. It isn’t about us as individuals.
Hereby perceive we the love [of God], because he laid down his life for us: and we ought to lay down [our] lives for the brethren. 1 John 3:16
And when he had called the people [unto him] with his disciples also, he said unto them, Whosoever will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me. Mark 8:34
That doesn’t always mean dying for others, but using our lives for others and tells us to put our own self interests secondary, actually tertiary, with God first, others second and us third.
Still other things I have seen, or heard said that are far from Christian thinking are:
I don’t care what it looks like or what I have to do, I am tired of not having the things I want and I am doing what I am doing to get what I want.
Even worse is when I have heard someone say:
I don’t care if it’s wrong, I am getting what I want and that’s what matters to me.
While others may not be right to judge one’s actions, someone that feels the need to try to justify their actions and the way in which they justify the actions by saying something like that quite obviously says that they know that they are not doing right and that instead are knowingly doing something they know they shouldn’t to have what they want in life. Christ did not die on the cross so we could think only of ourselves. He died that we would be saved from Hell if we believe in Him, confess our sins and then, live in accordance with things He taught. He did not teach us that we as individuals were the only ones that should matter to us. He did not say that we can stop doing for others and treat others wrong so we can, as individuals, have what we want in life. He didn’t die on the cross so we could do whatever it takes to get what we want, all the while KNOWING we are not doing right. I know some that have expressed the opinion that they can do something, then ask God for the forgiveness He promises, but He knows our hearts and if we do something intentionally, with the thought that we can ask forgiveness is not what He teaches. Intentionally sinning, mistreating others, doing the wrong thing to get what we want is not what Jesus taught.
But, I have heard these things from Christians, I have seen them post memes or posters on social media that says these things and say that God doesn’t want them to be unhappy so they will do whatever it takes to be happy. I pray for people like that. They are missing the whole meaning behind Christ’s life and death. They are giving in to the world’s idea of what a good life is, and that serving Him means serving others, putting others first and ourselves last. Hoping that others who have done one wrong suffer somehow for their actions and saying that God will let you watch is not forgiveness.
In the past, I have had thoughts similar to all of these things, and I do believe that one way or the other, those who do wrong will have to pay for their actions. I have done others wrong, I hope any I have forgive me. I have been wronged by others and I have forgiven them. I am not hoping that they get back the same from someone else. Any punishment or vengeance is out of my mind, out of my hands and I don’t have that desire to see people suffer. Whether they did me or anyone else wrong. I have thought that I deserved to be happy, but haven’t felt that doing others wrong to obtain happiness was how I should achieve happiness. I have felt frustrated and thought that I have worked hard and deserve whatever. To be honest, the only thing I deserve is to go to Hell for not being a good enough person, for my sins. But, Christ died so I did not have to suffer eternity in Hell, but that I might live through His sacrifice. He redeemed me and gave me more than I could ever deserve, life eternal with God.
For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord. Romans 6:23
6 For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly.
7 For scarcely for a righteous man will one die: yet peradventure for a good man some would even dare to die.
8 But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.
9 Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him.
Lord, I praise You and thank You for the mercy, grace and forgiveness You have given me, for the sacrifice Christ made on the cross to pay for my sins, both in action and in thought. I thank You for showing me that old ways of thinking about things is wrong and that trying to see with the heart and mind of Jesus will show me the proper way to think, act and live. I pray for our society today that seems to think that one can justify wrongful thinking and selfishness through prior sacrifices or hardships and that we understand the mind of Christ that we are better able to live as He wishes us to live and that You help us understand that no matter what hardships and sacrifices we think we have in our lives, none will ever equal the pain and suffering Jesus sustained for us or the sacrifice You made of Your only Son. I pray in Jesus name that You teach us all the importance of living the way You want us to live and to help us each see our failures and that we must confess those sins to You and believe in Christ to obtain the eternal rewards You promise. Draw us all closer to You and bring my loved ones near to You. Show us all how to be the people You want us to be.
Thank you all once again for your time. I hope that some of this blesses someone. I do worry about our society and the worldly mindset so many have, including Christians.
Remember, try to be a blessing to at least one person today.