Wednesday, January 7, 2015
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My wife is not your typical American television viewer. In fact, she seldom watches it. And secondly, when she does, I often find her watching nature shows. One time when I walked in there was this program on whales. It did make her blubber a little bit, but I did learn a lot watching it with her. It was about how this killer whale is really not as vicious as you might think he is, even with the name "Killer Whale." They actually had footage of a killer whale lying in the water with all these smaller animals playing all over him. Isn't that cute! The commentator said, "The killer whale is usually pretty gentle." Well, if so, he can afford to be gentle. He knows no one can threaten him, because I don't think anybody's stronger.
I'm Ron Hutchcraft and I want to have A Word With You today about "Never Playing Defense."
Our word for today from the Word of God comes from 1 Peter 2:21. Here's what it says, "To this you were called, because Christ suffered for you, leaving you an example that you should follow in His steps." Now, we all know that Christ is an example. But if you were to be like Him, what would you do?
Well, listen to this. "He committed no sin and no deceit was found in His mouth. When they hurled their insults at Him, He did not retaliate. When He suffered He made no threats. Instead, He entrusted himself to Him who judges justly." Now, here is Jesus under pressure, under attack, in danger for His life. But no threats, no comeback, no retaliation, no angry words. How could He be so un-defensive when He was so under attack?
Well, Jesus was simply saying, "I am in the hands of someone whose hands are bigger than the hands that are raised against me." Which brings us back to our killer whale, the gentle giant. Not because he's weak, but because he knows he's strong. He's secure. No one is bigger.
Maybe you sometimes find yourself under pressure and attack and treated badly. You might be going through that right now. And everything in your human nature, I know what it says. Mine says the same thing. "Strike back! Get even! Give them a dose of their own medicine." But Jesus calls us to follow radically in His steps. Which means - yeah, no retaliation. Don't strike back. Not because you're some weak little wimp, but because you are strong in Jesus Christ.
You don't have to retaliate. You can act, not react. Weakness reacts. You can be gentle by choice to those who are harsh with you. Not because you're weak and not because you're strong, but because your Father is strong.
Everything that's important to you is safe in God's hands. Nothing can hurt you, because your Father is so strong. The Bible says, "The fruit of the Spirit is gentleness." Sometimes the word gentleness is thought of as being a weak kind of thing. But gentleness is for the strong in the Lord. Be sure that your agenda, your security, your concerns are fully surrendered to the Lord, Jesus Christ. And then would you relax. Don't answer back. Don't threaten. Don't retaliate.
The Bible says, "A soft answer turns away wrath." Your battle isn't yours. Your battle is the Lord's. You need to concentrate on playing offense, gaining ground for your Lord. Don't waste time playing defense for yourself. In Christ you are strong. You can afford to be gentle. You're in a strong, powerful position in Christ.
If God is for you, who can be against you?