Vengeance Is Mine

By Bobby Blakey on February 23, 2020

Numbers 31:1-4


Vengeance Is Mine

By Bobby Blakey on February 23, 2020

Numbers 31:1-4

This is a rush transcript.

[00:00:02] I invite you to open the Bible with me and turn to the Book of Numbers 31. And I brought my Bible with me here tonight. It's the Bible I like to use when I'm studying because I love to see how the Bible is not a book. It is a collection of books. And so I got all the journals here to represent all the different books, and we'll see why a little bit later. But I got the book in numbers right now and I'm going to Chapter 31 as we continue our study through the law that we've been doing now for four months. We've been going through the law together.

[00:00:36] We'll be getting Deuteronomy next week. Everybody has anybody out there still reading every day who's still reading. Thank you. I see that if you're not reading with us, we invite you.

[00:00:46] There's a schedule on the back of your hand out, read through the book and numbers with us. And this week we're going to come to Chapter 31. I have heard numbers 31 referenced more by people who try to disprove the Bible than by people who actually love God's word and believe in the Bible. And people try to use this story and they try to twist it to mean that God is evil and God is a big meanie and God is not someone that we should believe in or trust him because he's not good. And so we want to get into it together and see what it's really revealing to us about gods. This is numbers, chapter 31, verse one. It says The Lord or EOW Way. When you see those capital letters there, the Lord spoke to Moses saying of venge the people of Israel on the Midianites afterword, you shall be gathered to your people. So Moses spoke to the people saying arm men from among you for the war, that they may go against Midian to execute the Lord's vengeance on Midian. You shall send a thousand from each of the tribes of Israel to the war. So if you've been here with us through the book of numbers, you know the reason that they numbered all the people that they counted over six hundred thousand in one generation and then they counted them again in Chapter 26, over six hundred thousand men, 20 years or older now in the new generation. But they numbered the people because they were going to war. And now here's a battle that God tells Moses to get the people to go to war. And he actually says they're going to take a thousand from each of the tribes of Israel. Help me out here, everybody. How many tribes of Israel are there? We should know that by now.

[00:02:40] A thousand times twelve. They're going to send out they have six hundred thousand men. They're going to send out 12000 of these men.

[00:02:50] They're going against the Midianites. And the reason it said two different times here in these verses, what is the reason that they're going to war against the Midianites? Well, the reason is, as Moses says here in verse three, he says to execute the Lord's vengeance.

[00:03:09] On Midian.

[00:03:11] The God of the Bible is a god of vengeance.

[00:03:18] That's what we're finding out here tonight.

[00:03:20] That's something that he reveals about himself to his people, that I'm going to ask you, my people, Israel, to go attack this other people. And the purpose is my vengeance upon them that I am going to judge them for their sin.

[00:03:39] Hey, now, if you keep reading here in numbers 31, there's some amazing things that we need to point out. First of all, look at verse eight.

[00:03:47] It describes what happens here as Phinney As and the son of Ali ASER, the priest. He leads the army out with the vessels of the sanctuary, the trumpets. We were finally getting you to use the trumpets we learned about in Chapter 10 that if you blow these trumpets, the Lord will remember his people and come and save them from their enemies. And so they go out and they war against Midian. And it says, look at verse, start with me. And verse seven, they word against Midian as the Lord commanded Moses and they killed every male. They killed the kings of Midian with the rest of their slain and then all these names here, Eevi Rackham zir her and Rheba the five kings of Midian. And they also kill. This is a name that should leap off the page at us now. They also killed Ballum, the son of Buhr with the sword.

[00:04:38] OK, well, now now you might understand why there was vengeance on the Midianites. Once you hear the name Bailen, because, you know, if you've been reading that Bailen was hired to curse the Israelites to curse God's people and he was unable to do that. He ended up blessing them instead. But it says part of the ones we're taking vengeance on here is Bailleau.

[00:05:04] And then go to verse sixteen, skip on down a verse 16 here.

[00:05:08] And it says here again, here's why we went after the Midianites. Here's why God wanted vengeance on them. Behold D on Bailamos Advice series again. So whatever the Midianites did, it was all Bailamos idea.

[00:05:23] They caused the people of Israel to act treacherously against the Lord in the incident of Peor. And so the plague came among the Congregation of the Lord.

[00:05:37] OK. Now, hopefully, if you've been reading that's ringing a bell, we'll go back and look at it a second.

[00:05:41] But the Midianites came in and they turned the Israelites, many of them away from God against God. And it was Bailamos idea, his brainstorm, because he couldn't curse God's people. He said, hey, I can't curse them because God's already bless them. He's already promised them. But one thing I can do if I can't curse them is I can get them to compromise.

[00:06:04] And here's how we're gonna do it. We're gonna offer them to come and worship our idol and we're gonna offer them are women for immorality. That was Balan's idea. And so because of his advice, these Midianites caused the Israelites one nation, causing another nation to stumble. And look what. Look what Moses says here on behalf of the on behalf of the Lord, look at verse 17. This is intense. This is something people don't like.

[00:06:33] They want to bash the Bible for this right here. Now, therefore, kill every male among the little ones and kill every woman who has known man by lying with him. But all the young girls who have not known man by lying with him keep alive for yourselves.

[00:06:52] These people.

[00:06:53] Because of their sin that Balam led them into where they caused compromise among the Israelites. They are all to be killed. That is God taking vengeance upon them. The only ones who won't be killed are the young virgin women. They're the only ones whose lives will be spared.

[00:07:14] And then it says this if you keep going through Chapter 31, go all the way down to verse 48. And here's the report that comes from the 12 thousand men who win out with Finnie as was leading the charge. It says here in verse 48, then the officers who were over the thousands of the army, the commanders of thousands, the commanders of hundreds, all the leaders of the army, now, they came near to Moses to give him the battle report. Here's the military report. And they said to Moses, your servants have counted the men. That's what we're doing here in numbers were counting the men of war who are under our command. And there is not a man missing from us.

[00:08:00] OK, so let's think about this together for a second. And the beginning of numbers, they counted over 600000 men and the Israelites were afraid that that wasn't enough men to go and fight the other nations in the promised land.

[00:08:15] Now, God says, I'm going to take my vengeance. I want you to send out only a thousand from each Twi tribe. I know you have over six hundred thousand. Send out 12000 to go and take vengeance on these Midianites.

[00:08:28] They're going to kill every male among the Midianites and not one Israelite dies in the battle.

[00:08:37] That's what the scriptures say.

[00:08:39] So I understand that God used the Israelites to judge the Midianites. But this is no ordinary war right here. This is no human battle. This is a god of vengeance. Who is judging people for their sin? Go back to Chapter 25, numbers 25. And let me show you what the Midianites did to cause God's people to compromise when they worship their idol by all. And they committed acts of immorality at this place. Peor. This is numbers 25. Just going back a few chapters here and numbers 31 made it clear this was all Bailamos master strategy to get to God's people. It says while Israel lived in showed him, the people began to whore with the daughters of Moab. OK, so they're in the desert. They're on the eastern side of the Jordan River. There's an area there, if you look it up on the maps. It's called Moab. And there's the Moabites and the media nights. And they're kind of working together on this one.

[00:09:39] And it says the people they began to have inappropriate relationships with, the daughters of Moab, these invited the people to. To the sacrifices of their God, so their neighbors. Now, the people from Moab, these Midianites, are saying, hey, Israelites come over and have a party with us, come over and worship our God with us. And this idolatry of all is leading to sexual immorality among the people. So Israel, it says here in verse three, yoked himself to by all.

[00:10:09] Of Peor and the anger of the Lord, as soon as his people started worshiping an idol, the anger of the Lord was kindled against Israel and the Lord said to Moses, take all the chiefs of the people and hang them in the sun before the Lord. That the fierce anger of the Lord may turn away from Israel.

[00:10:27] And so Moses said to the judges of Israel, each of you kill those of his men who have yoked themselves to be. But all of pure. This this thing that people are doing to go and worship an idol, to go and commit immorality with these daughters of Moab. This is such a grievous sin. It makes God so angry that anyone who's committing this sin, you should go and kill them. That's God's him. Her response to the sin of people here.

[00:10:58] And then this is a pretty graphic story right here in verse six.

[00:11:01] It says, Behold, one of the people of Israel came and brought a Midianites woman to his family in the side of Moses and in the side of the whole congregation of the people of Israel while they were weeping in the entrance of the tent of meeting. I mean, this is this is a crazy picture. Here's Moses in some of the leaders, in some of the congregation of Israel there at the Tabernacle. And they're seeing people worshiping, but all there knowing this sexual morality is going on. And they're weeping. They're mourning. They like can't believe what God's people are doing. And right in front of them brazenly here comes in Israel, a man taking one of the daughters of Moab in to his tent within the view of Moses and all these people who are mourning over the sin of Israel.

[00:11:49] And it says here in verse seven when Finian's.

[00:11:53] That's a name you need to know, Finian's The son of Ali Azer, son of Aaron the priest. This is Aaron's grandson, the son of the new high priest, Ali ASER.

[00:12:01] When Finian's sees this blatant sin right there in front of the Tabernacle. He rose and left the congregation and took a spear in his hand and he went after the man of Israel into the chamber and pierced both of them, the man of Israel and the woman through her belly.

[00:12:18] Thus the plague on the people of Israel was stopped. But nevertheless, those who died by the plague were 24000.

[00:12:27] So the Midianites intentionally, thanks to Bailamos strategy, came in to seduce and lure away the people of Israel to idolatry and immorality and as a consequence on the people of Israel, twenty four thousand people died in a plague.

[00:12:46] And as a consequence, consequence to the nation of Midian, God wipes them out, except for the young ladies who are virgins.

[00:12:54] This is who God is.

[00:12:57] This is how God actually feels about sin and ass, who takes the command to execute those who are committing this kind of sin. Phinney as who takes this command seriously. He is now lifted up as somebody that we should know among God's people. Look what it says here in verse 10, the Lord said to Moses Finney is this guy with the spear, the son of El�as, our son of Aaron. The priest has turned back my wrath from the people of Israel in that he was jealous with my jealousy among them so that I did not consume the people of Israel in my jealousy. Therefore, say, behold, I give to him my covenant of peace, and it shall be to him and to his descendants after him. The covenant of a perpetual priesthood, because he was jealous for his God and made atonement for the people of Israel, this guy finishes with the spear who has zeal for the glory of God, who says this sin is not right, and it must be judged in the way that God says that guy.

[00:13:59] God says, that's one of my guys right there.

[00:14:02] That guy, he understands who I really am.

[00:14:05] He understands how much I hate sin. This is a sermon. This is these are passages that aren't being read in the American church.

[00:14:16] This is a sermon that is not being preached. Many times these days that you and I, with this God we study in the Bible is a god of vengeance.

[00:14:28] I didn't hear anybody say a man at the end of that one right there.

[00:14:34] Turn back to numbers 22 and let's see how this how this whole thing got started here. I mean, this is what's really surreal here in numbers 22. We get the behind the scenes story.

[00:14:46] We've already seen the Israelites doubt God and start complaining and not willing to buy faith, go into the promised land and go to war against the enemies that God already said. These are wicked nations. They're going to be judged. You're going to drive them out. I'm giving you the land.

[00:15:02] But they did not take God at his word. They doubted him. And so they had to wander in the wilderness for 40 years because they were afraid of people and didn't have faith in God. Now we get the glimpse of some of their enemies in Moab here, Moab, working with Midian together, coming against them. And we see that the enemies of Israel were even more afraid of Israel than Israel was afraid of them.

[00:15:25] Like the people of Israel have so much fear. They won't go fight in God's name and the promised land. And then now we get behind the curtain, look with the enemies. We're thinking that same time they were more afraid of Israel.

[00:15:38] Look what they say here in numbers 22, verse one than the people of Israel set out and camped in the plains of Moab beyond the Jordan at Jericho, and they lack the son of Zion poor saw all that Israel had done to the AMA writes, If you read Chapter 21, they started winning some military victories over some of the other nations who were coming against them. And look at verse three. Moab was in great dread of the people.

[00:16:05] This neighbor nation, Moab, they are terrified that the Israelites are coming into the neighborhood.

[00:16:13] It says because they were many they knew the numbers of Israel and they were it says Moab was overcome with fear of the people of Israel.

[00:16:22] And so Moab said to the elders of Midian. So you got the land of Moab and you got the Midianites there and now they're working together. This this HORD the Israelites will now look up all that is around us as the ox licks up the grass of the field. These guys are going to chew us up and spit us out like grass is what they're saying.

[00:16:41] So Baylock, the son of Spore, who is king of Moa at that time. He sent messengers to them. This is where we meet this character who comes up with this whole idea to get Israel to compromise.

[00:16:52] Ballum, the son of Bearup Thor, which is near the river and the land of the people of a mar to call him, saying, behold, the people has come out of Egypt.

[00:17:01] They cover the face of the earth and they are dwelling opposite me. I've got some new neighbors and they are taken over the neighborhood. Come now. Curse this people for me, since they are too mighty for me. Perhaps I shall be able to defeat them and drive them from the land. For I know that he whom you bless is blessed and he whom you curse is cursed. And so if you look at verse seven, it says the elders of Moab and the elders of Midian, these two groups coming together to parted with the fees for divination in their hand.

[00:17:34] Divination is something in the law that deserves the death penalty.

[00:17:40] They're coming to pay this man, bail them off. So he will curse God's people.

[00:17:46] And Bailamos not able to curse God's people, he's only able to bless them because the word of the law or the word of the Lord will not be thwarted by anybody. And so he can only bless God's people because God's already promised them blessing. And so Ballum strategy, if I can't curse them, I will compromise them. And we will send in our idols. We will send in the daughters of Moab and we will get God's people to fall. And at the end of this, 24000 Israelites are dead. And all of the males and all of the women who aren't the young virgins are all dead of the Midianites because God is a God of say it with me, everybody, vengeance. He's not if he's not ashamed of it, he's not afraid of it. He's not apologizing for who he is. He's got whole chapters about what he thinks about sin, sin among his people, sin among other nations, sin anywhere. He's got a thought about it. He's got zeal to execute justice. That's what vengeance is. He's got anger and hatred for the sin, and God will judge it. He will make it right. He has a great zeal to make things right. That's his vengeance. And I don't know why.

[00:19:03] When I grew up going to Christian schools and studying theology and reading all the great books of theology that Christians have been writing, I don't know why vengeance is often left off the lists of the attributes of God.

[00:19:17] Because through all these books, God's saying, you want to sin against me, I'm coming after you.

[00:19:24] I'm coming after your people. I'm coming after everybody.

[00:19:28] That's who God is, and he's not hiding it. He's letting it out in the open. Now, if we were to go to what we call the Old Testament, which which is a name I don't like because it's not old. It is the eternal word of God, everybody.

[00:19:43] And the end the way Jesus talked about it was the law, the prophets and the Psalms. Or as we'll throw up here on the screen, there were really three sections to the Hebrew Bible. There was the law, the prophets and the writings. And so we're going through the law together. We're in the book of numbers. And you can see I pulled out these first books of the law written by Moses. Clearly, the vengeance of God is coming off the pages to us here in numbers will turn with me to one of the prophets. Turn with me to Nahum, everybody. Let's go to the book of NATO. And really, this book was known among the Jews as the Twelve. And if it's one of what we call the minor prophets, which again, is not a good name for them because there's nothing minor about them, these are works of God. This is the word of God. And there was a prophet named Nahum and he had a message. And I don't know if you've ever read the book of Nahum or not, but if you can find it in your Bible, if you can peel the pages away from sticking together and we're going to read a little book, a little bit of the book, a name here tonight, which maybe you've heard the story of a Jonah, which a lot of people know because it's a whale of a tale and it works really good with children. And so we know that one that's the most well-known of the minor prophets. But there's there's no great animal analogies here. And Nahum. And so we ignore this book of the Bible and. But really, this is a book now written to the city of Knin of a much later after the time of Jonah, because during the time of Jonah, there was a great revival, a great repentance, and then Geneva, the capital city of Syria. But now it's there's judgment common to Nineveh.

[00:21:23] And so this is if you have ever read the book of name, this is what would strike you right away if you started reading it. Look, start with me a name, chapter one, verse one.

[00:21:33] It says in Oracle concerning Minova, the book of the vision of Nahum of El Coche. Now, just watch how this starts. The Lord is a jealous and avenging God. The Lord, your way is avenging and wrathful.

[00:21:51] The Lord takes vengeance on his adversaries and keeps wrath for his enemies. Do I need to read any further? Is everybody getting the basic gist of this book?

[00:22:03] When you tell your child something once, you would like them to pay attention. When you tell them twice, you're expecting now for them to really listen. By the third time, it's three strikes and they're out. Any parents with me on this one? Three times. The way Nahum wants to start is there is a God yare way, though, a one true and living God. And he is a God who takes vengeance.

[00:22:29] OK, this the Bible is not like you people aren't going to like this. Let's hide this. The Bible's like, hey, let's make sure that one of these books is all about the vengeance of God.

[00:22:41] That's what the Bible's like.

[00:22:43] That our God is going to have a zeal to execute justice in everything that is wrong. Everything that is wrong will be made right by our God.

[00:22:59] And he will be pleased to do it. He has vengeance.

[00:23:03] So clearly, it's not just in the law. It's also in the profits. It's kind of the theme of this prophetic work of Nahum. Now, let's go to the Psalms. Everybody turn over to the Psalms with me, which is the first book of the writings in the Hebrew Bible. And let's go to Psalm 94. Hopefully you're familiar with the Hebrew hymn? No, we like to call it all the songs of the Nation of Israel. Some of their poetic works. And they compiled these 150 different psalms as a collection to represent their worship of God. Reading through the Psalms is one of the best ways to really learn who God is in all of his attributes and the completeness of his character. And look at Psalm 94, if you can find it. Everybody turn to Psalm 94. And this was a song that the people of God's people of Israel would sing.

[00:24:00] And here's what the lyrics of their song. Oh, Lord. Oh, your way. God of vengeance. O God of vengeance. Shine forth. See, right, Pearson, I. We get a lot of requests of songs here at the church. Haven't heard this one get requested. When are we going to sing that Benjamin song again? Man, I love The Edge.

[00:24:30] Right, Pearson, I we have we have a big problem, we're Bible nerds, I don't know if there's any anybody else here that's a Bible nerd, but we love this book. We love studying. And we got this really interesting idea.

[00:24:39] One time I remember well, Ryan and I, we were like, let's write a song from one of the songs, Let's turn Psalm two into a song. Yeah. We were like, this will be awesome. It talks about how Jesus is coming back and all the kings of the Earth better be warned. All the nations of the Earth better watch out because here comes Jesus. And when Jesus comes back, he's going to shatter all the kings on the day of wrath that he brings. Let's write a song about that. Right. I don't know if you've ever seen two nerds just geeking out. Right. This is gonna be awesome. It's going to be biblical. And so Ryan writes this catchy tune, and it's a Klapper. You know, you hear those songs and you just want to start clapping. And we start doing this song and people are trying to figure it out at church. And we hit the chorus and it's rocking. And I'm starting to clap in the back, you know, kind of a fake clap that I'm trying to get going among the people.

[00:25:34] And it's like you will shatter every king on the day of wrath. And you can just see all the people like squinting at the words on the screen.

[00:25:46] What what he's going to shatter kings. What does that mean?

[00:25:53] There's a day of wrath coming. See, my question for you tonight is, do you really know who God is? I got to asking you.

[00:26:05] You hear people say stuff, well, my God, wouldn't be like fill in the blank.

[00:26:10] Listen. You don't get to make up who God is. You don't even get to figure out who God is. God reveals himself to us. And if we're if we're blessed, he opens our eyes to see his revelation. To see who he is, how dare people like me and you think we get to decide who God is? His people have been celebrating him throughout history, and one of the themes is win is the god of vengeance going to shine forth. We got a lot of wrong's around here that we need made, right? Where is the god of vengeance? Look at what they go on to sing here. Rise up o judge of the Earth.

[00:26:54] Repay to the proud what they deserve. Oh yea way. How long shall the wicked.

[00:27:01] How long shall the wicked exalt.

[00:27:05] You could just hear the guitar riff in on that one right there. Right.

[00:27:09] They pour out their arrogant words, all the evil doers boast they crush your people. Oh, Lord. And afflict your heritage. They kill the widow and the sojourner. And they murder the fatherless.

[00:27:22] And they say the Lord does not see the God of Jacob does not perceive not only to the wicked people think that God doesn't see the evil in the world and he's not going to do anything about it. People at church today act like God doesn't see evil and he's not going to do anything about.

[00:27:39] Now, if you want to really know who God is, one of the things that you need to know about it.

[00:27:44] Is that he's come in to get everybody who lives in San. He's coming with vengeance.

[00:27:51] Now turn with me to Deuteronomy. Let's go to Deuteronomy. We kind of went through the law, prophets and writings there. Let's go let's go back to the law. Let's give you a preview of the book. We're about to get into Deuteronomy term, which means Deuteronomy 32, everybody. And this is really Moses writing a song here at the end. A lot of Deuteronomy is Moses. His commentary on the on the loss. We're going to really get to study Moses as a teacher, as we guess a prophet among God's people as we go through the book of Deuteronomy.

[00:28:20] And at the end, he writes a song here in Deuteronomy 32. And you'll see it's a long song. He refers to God as the rock throughout the song. And I want to get to this part in Deuteronomy 32, verse 34. So skip on down verse 34 and we'll get to eventually read through this whole song and we'll be studying it as we go through Deuteronomy. Bullets just jumped to this part. So this is a song that Moses is writing, a poem that he's putting together for the people of Israel. And it says this speaking from God's perspective here, as if God were speaking in the first person.

[00:28:59] Is not this laid up in store with me, sealed up in my treasuries. Here's God talking about the wrath that he is storing up for the day of judgment. And then here's a famous line that God says that gets retweeted. It gets quoted, it gets it gets aggregated many times throughout the scripture. Vengeance is mine. Here's something guy wants everybody to know.

[00:29:27] I alone am in the vengeance business.

[00:29:30] Vengeance is mine and recompense.

[00:29:34] For the time when their foot shall slip for the day of their calamity is at hand and their doom comes swiftly, for the Lord will vindicate his people and have compassion on his servants when he sees that their power is gone and there is none remaining bond or free.

[00:29:52] So one thing that Moses wanted in the song, one thing that God wanted to say to his people.

[00:29:59] Is that when when everything is wrong and your enemies are closing in around you and it feels like people doing the right thing are surrounded by the wicked and the wicked are winning? Here's something God wants you to know. Vengeance is mine.

[00:30:13] He wants his people to know that for all the wrongs being done against them, he's come in with zeal to execute justice and he will make it right.

[00:30:23] This is something we really need to think about, I'm really asking you to rethink some of your thoughts right now. How come if we make up a bunch of superheroes and we call them The Avengers? It's really cool. And it's the number one movie of all time.

[00:30:37] But if we say that God is an avenger, he is really evil. And that's an excuse not to read the Bible or go to church. When the greatest movie made in our generation, supposedly, at least it made the most money at the box office, is all about a bunch of made up heroes bringing vengeance for planet Earth. How come when the real God wants to bring vengeance to planet Earth, he's a bad guy that nobody likes.

[00:31:06] Maybe because the people he's coming to bring vengeance on.

[00:31:10] Is us.

[00:31:12] Maybe the reason we don't like the idea of God being a god of vengeance is because we're a bunch of sinners who deserve to be judged. Maybe it makes us a little uncomfortable to think about God being the Avenger. But let's get this down for point number one. If you're taking notes here, you need to know God as an avenger. That's that's point number one. You need to know God as an avenger. This is the kind of God that we worship. This is the kind of God that we serve. He has a statement that he wants to be sung, that he wants to be known by his people, that others who are inspired by the Holy Spirit are going to quote this statement later on in scripture. God is saying to you, vengeance is my. And I can't even take us to all the passages throughout these many books here that will express the vengeance of God. There's no way we could fit them all in to one sermon.

[00:32:13] This is something that God wants to be known for. As an avenger. I mean, here's something God wants you to know. If you've been attacked, if you've been assaulted, if you've been raped, if you've been molested, here's something that God says in the Bible. I am your venger. That's what God sets. They ain't getting away with it. It will be made right.

[00:32:40] He says in First Thessalonians, Chapter four, which is a strong warning to abstain from the kind of sexual immorality that the Israelites fell into with the Midianites that God judged both of those nations for. Hey, when it says to abstain from sexual morality, there's a strong warning that people who sin and cause other people to sin that sin, God wants them to. No warning. I'm the avenger of those kind of situations.

[00:33:08] I'm the one who shows up with a zeal to execute justice like my like my man Phineas. I will make things right.

[00:33:19] Turning to Romans, Chapter 12. Let's let's go now to the New Testament here and let's go to Romans Chapter twelve and let's look together at a quote of Deuteronomy 30 to 35. So we're now going to the writing of Paul, his masterpiece on the gospel to the church in Rome and enrollment's 12. He's now getting into practical Christian living where you offer your life as a sacrifice to Jesus Christ. You don't conform to the world. You get your mind renewed by the scripture.

[00:33:52] And it says here at the at the end of Romans 12, as we get towards the end, look here in verse 19, whereas Paul's writing to Christians in the Church of Jesus, he says this beloved, those who are loved by God, who've been called according to his purpose, saved by the blood of Jesus.

[00:34:11] The father has loved you to send his son to die for you. You are loved by God, immediately says never avenge yourselves, but leave it to the wrath of God for it is written.

[00:34:24] Vengeance is whose.

[00:34:27] It's mine. I will repay, says the Lord. So here is a message to all of us as Christian people, one thing we should never take is revenge.

[00:34:42] One thing we should never try to do. Literally, it says it right there in scripture. Never avenge yourselves.

[00:34:50] You don't have to get your own back because you're one of God's people that he loves, that he sent his son for Jesus died for. You've been bought with the price, the precious blood of Christ. God's got your back.

[00:35:04] You don't have to get your own back. That's what it says right here. Never avenge yourselves.

[00:35:10] Revenge is not the storyline of any Christian person. It's not a movie or a story that we should even entertain. And no. And in fact, let's look at the. Versus around here. Let's get the context. Look at verse 17.

[00:35:24] It says, repaying no one evil for evil. There's a lot of evil in the world. There's a lot of evil maybe being done to you. Don't go back at anybody with evil for evil, but give thought to do what is honorable on the side of all if possible. So far as it depends on you live peaceably with all. Do you see what it's saying here?

[00:35:43] I understand people are doing wrong things to you. Don't strike back in anger. Don't take revenge.

[00:35:51] I'll be at peace. Do what is honorable. Don't respond to evil with evil. Don't react. Look, it says, never avenge yourselves. That's what God does, leave it to the wrath of God. See, there's actually comfort to be found in the vengeance of God.

[00:36:09] For Christians who are being wronged by their enemies, who are being persecuted, who are being taken advantage of for their kindness, who are being mistreated because they're in the name of Jesus, something that you can find comfort in is the vengeance of God, that you don't have to get your own back because God will get your back.

[00:36:29] It's his business. It belongs to him. He alone takes vengeance.

[00:36:35] So if this were listed among the attributes of God, which this is often left out of the teaching of God, that man selects completely in the teaching of God.

[00:36:46] As he arranged the books, not so much talked about today.

[00:36:51] But if this were in the list of the attributes of God, we often break those attributes into two different groups. There are the incommunicable and the communicable attributes. There's the attributes that are only God. And then there's the attributes that were supposed to be like a guy where we're holy as he is holy or we love as he loved us.

[00:37:10] See, vengeance would be an incommunicable attribute. It's only God. Vengeance belongs to only him. We don't ever act that way.

[00:37:19] In fact, look what it goes on to say, according the proverbs here in verse 20 to the contrary, if your enemy is hungry, feed him. If he is thirsty, give him something to drink for by so doing, you will heap burning coals on his head.

[00:37:34] Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with what?

[00:37:40] OK, so this is this is something that everybody here needs to understand, we need to know who God is. We need his name to be exalted. God is an avenger. Here's point number two. You are not an adventure guy. Sorry. Keep the at home. All right. We don't need helmets. We don't need catchy names. All right. You are not an adventure. This is this is something that belongs to God. And this is something that people really get tripped up on because people go back to numbers 31 and they say, well, how come the Israelites get to judge the Midianites? That's not what's happening. God is taking his vengeance on the Midianites. He's not saying the Israelites are righteous. No, a plague just killed 24000 of them for their sin. God is an equal opportunity avenger. He's ready to judge all the nations guy. But as for us, we're not here to judge anybody. Can I get name in from anybody on that? We're not here to take vengeance. OK, this is maybe a part of why it's hard for people to understand that God is a god of vengeance. Because that's a way that he is. That we are not.

[00:38:48] We are never a repeat, never supposed to avenge ourselves on anyone. You got somebody comment and they're bullying you and they're taking advantage of the fact that you're a kind, respectful Christian, that you're one of the good guys and they're common and slapping you around on the cheek. What are you doing? Somebodies slapping you on the cheek.

[00:39:08] You give them the other cheek. What do you do when somebody is taken advantage of you? You go the extra mile.

[00:39:15] Let's really think this all the way through it, saying if your enemy is hungry, here's what you do, you feed him.

[00:39:21] If he's thirsty, here's what you do. You love your enemies. You pray for those who persecute you, because here's something that you know. You know who your God is. You know that he will make everything right, that he has this burning passion to execute justice on the planet.

[00:39:38] And it's only a matter of time till the God of vengeance shows up and gets your back. You got a really big dad who's come in and he'll make everything right.

[00:39:49] So you're not worried about what people are doing to you? How much better would our testimony be in the world if we stop thinking that we needed to fight our enemies and we trusted God to do it?

[00:40:01] We need to stop attacking with our words. People who are different than us that we think oppose us as Christians, we need to be loving those people and praying for them. Never avenge yourself, says the one who wants all vengeance to belong to him.

[00:40:23] Never. If somebody is being evil to you. Overcome that evil with. Who's the ultimate example of someone who is having all kinds of evil done to him? And he opens not his mouth.

[00:40:38] That's our la Lord Jesus Christ, like a lamb led to the slaughter. And he opened not his mouth. I mean, Jesus could have said a word and everybody would have fallen down.

[00:40:51] And he suffered trusting a faithful creator, trusting a god of vengeance to make things right. In fact, what was Jesus praying for his enemies while they were mocking him and shaming him on the cross? He was praying father would forgive them, for they know not what they'd.

[00:41:14] You want to follow Jesus? Well, he leads us to the cross, and the way we treat our enemies is with love and prayer.

[00:41:22] Zero vengeance.

[00:41:25] If we could really get a hold of this thought and we could get in our minds here tonight, that you never need to strike back at any person ever for anything they do to you. What peace you would live in.

[00:41:39] What freedom? If you didn't feel like you had to react to other people.

[00:41:44] But you knew that God was going to make all of that right. How would that change the way you interact with your coworkers, with your family members?

[00:41:53] With the people you think are your nemesis. Says, Never avenge yourselves. So we're taking Deuteronomy 32 and we're applying it to the Christian life and we're encouraging people in the church because we know who our God is, because we know we've got a god of vengeance.

[00:42:13] And we've been reading it over and over again throughout the writings in the law and the prophets and the Psalms. And because we're so convinced he's a god of vengeance, then we know that we would never need to avenge ourselves.

[00:42:26] That's one of the conclusions that we should take from numbers 31. Wow. Look at the passion. God has to execute justice. I don't need to worry about all the injustices I see. God's on the. Turn with me to the book of Hebrews. Let's go now to the Book of Hebrews, another place here in. In the letters to the church that is going to quote Deuteronomy 32 35, the famous statement of God, vengeance is mine. It shows up here in Hebrews Chapter 10. And remember, the point of the book of Hebrews was to teach the Jews to leave behind the old covenant and to embrace the new covenant because the new covenant is greater in Jesus Christ.

[00:43:10] And so Jews who are still clinging into the to the to the old ways, it was like, no, we got to leave that all behind. And Jesus has fulfilled that. He is the sacrifice. He is the high priest. Through him, we're going to enter the Sabbath rest. Let's leave that old covenant behind and let's embrace the new covenant through the blood of Jesus. Well, one of the things that Hebrews says is leave the old covenant behind.

[00:43:34] But it doesn't say leave the idea of the God of vengeance behind. No one actually quotes that idea and applies it to the Jews that this letter is written to.

[00:43:44] That's what it says here in Hebrews Chapter 10. And you can see it here with me in verse 30. And he. He's a saying leave the old covenant behind.

[00:43:54] But he's not saying leave the Old Testament behind. That's the mistake that many Christians today are making. Like we don't need those books. No, we don't need to practice the Covenant, but we need the scripture.

[00:44:06] In fact, he's going to quote the scripture. We know him. Who said, vengeance is mine. I will repay.

[00:44:13] So in no way would we get the idea that the church shouldn't be talking about or thinking about this idea that vengeance belongs to God alone when it keeps getting quoted to people in church. Vengeance is mine. I will repay. And again, the Lord will judge his people. It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.

[00:44:38] That's a famous line even in the history of our nation, going back to Jonathan Edwards, preaching in the Great Awakening. He was referring to this concept of vengeance is mine the most famous sermon in the country that you live in?

[00:44:53] That sparked a national revival is about the vengeance of God.

[00:44:59] Maybe we should bring it back again, see another revival.

[00:45:04] And this is what is really interesting here in the Book of Hebrews, because in Deuteronomy 32 35, Moses was writing this song to comfort the people that when their enemies came around them, they had a god of vengeance who would deliver them from their enemies. And Romans 12, it was to comfort the Christians that they don't have to avenge themselves because God will avenge them.

[00:45:26] But in Hebrews here, it takes a different tact and it actually proves as a sober warning to the people that, hey, you better watch out because if you're still in sin, God will take vengeance on you.

[00:45:41] Look what it says here in Hebrews 10, verse 26.

[00:45:45] It says four, if we go on sinning deliberately after receiving the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sense, but a fearful expectation of judgment and a fury of fire that will consume the adversary's.

[00:46:01] Anyone who has set aside the law of Moses dies without mercy on the evidence of two or three witnesses.

[00:46:06] How much worse punishment? Do you think we'll be deserved by the one who has trampled under foot, the son of God has profane the blood of the covenant by which he was sanctified and has outraged the spirit of grace, for we know him who said vengeance is mine?

[00:46:27] Saying, hey, we know a god of vengeance.

[00:46:29] We know how he he remember how he destroyed those Midianites. Member, how he had the back of his people. Remember that line from Moses's famous song? Yeah, you better watch out lest you find yourself to be one of the emeny enemies of God. And he takes vengeance on you.

[00:46:49] Now, I want you to really think through something with me.

[00:46:52] Because I've heard people at church, I've gone I've gone to church now for all of my life, and I've heard so many people at church give this kind of an idea, this kind of a statement. Yes, I know. I'm continuing in sin. Yes, I know. I keep on doing the same thing that God told me not to do. But it's okay if I sin again, because God will. Just what?

[00:47:19] You'll forgive me.

[00:47:22] He's a god of grace, a god of great mercy, and all of that is very true, that our God forgives sinners, he gives us good things and he withholds the judgment that we deserve. But do you see what God is actually saying is going to happen to those who keep on sinning? They're not going to meet a god of forgiveness. They're going to meet a god of vengeance, is what it says.

[00:47:44] I haven't heard that.

[00:47:45] Hey, you know what? It's no big deal if you sin, brother, because God would just forgive you. Oh, actually, he's going to take vengeance on you. I never hurt anybody. Pipe up and say that in the conversation. Not one time in the Church of Jesus when somebody was talking about continuing deliberately in a pattern of sin. Did I hear somebody say, actually, strong warning alert sirens going off in my head? That's the kind of thing that God comes after.

[00:48:12] No wonder there's so much sin rampant in the Church of Jesus Christ in our day.

[00:48:18] We don't know who our God is. We don't know what kind of business he's in.

[00:48:22] This is an argument from the lesser to the greater. I have heard people say at church while we've been going through the law. I've heard people all my life say, I'm so glad I wasn't an Israelite. Have you ever heard somebody say that? So glad I was born today. And they're not talking about the Internet or cars or in and out burger. They're like, I'm so glad I don't live in the old covenant. Can I get name men for anybody? It says we're actually living in the covenant of worse punishment. Did you catch that part? Did you see that the stakes have been raised, not lessened, since the days of Israel and Midian and the daughters of Moab?

[00:48:56] Did you see that? It said, hey. And back in the day, it was the law of Moses.

[00:49:00] And if you violated the law of Moses, yes, you could suffer the death penalty if there were two or three witnesses. But how much worse do you think the punishment is going to be for people like us living in the new covenant time when God sent his one and only son to be the sacrifice?

[00:49:15] And God took this vengeance that we've been reading about, that we've been talking about. And he took that zeal to execute justice and he poured out that wrath that he's been storing up. And he poured it out on his one and only son. And he judge Jesus in your place with the full fury of his wrath upon his own son, Jesus.

[00:49:39] And now you're like, it's no big deal if I keep on sinning.

[00:49:44] And we accept that idea in the Church of Jesus Christ. See, I had this thing happen to me one day that made me think about this passage completely differently, I was atah I was at a shopping mall and I was walking through the parking lot with my son, my firstborn son, whom I loved, who was just a young child at that time. And this car just abruptly pulled out in front of us and almost hit my young son right there in the parking lot. And I saw the driver drive away like they didn't even know anything had happened.

[00:50:15] And I had this thought in my head of what would have happened if that car had had actually backed into my son, a little child that couldn't even be seen, and it had knocked him down to the pavement and his blood was there on the pavement. And that person had not even cared and driven away.

[00:50:36] And I had this idea of what it must be like to be the father in heaven and to see people rejecting your son who shed his blood here on earth. The full fury of the wrath of God who sent his son because he does love and does want to forgive and wants to give mercy and grace. And then you reject his son. In fact, the blood of his son is on the ground and you step over the blood of Jesus on your way to Moore sin. And you think the father's gonna be okay with you? It's a god of vengeance. He's come in for you.

[00:51:12] If you know, Jesus died, if you know his blood was shed. If the Holy Spirit has convicted you of your sin and opened your eyes to see the glorious grace of God, that he wants to give you good things and eternal life, an abundance of joy in his presence forever instead of the judgment that you deserve.

[00:51:29] And he's given his one and only son for you. And you say, thanks for Jesus, but I'm gonna keep on sinning. The only thing you have to look forward to is a god of vengeance.

[00:51:42] And he's coming for you.

[00:51:44] Point number three. You got to make sure here today that this god of vengeance is not coming for you. Make sure he is not coming for you. See, this is a surprising twist here in the Book of Hebrews. This is something that Jewish people would not have expected.

[00:51:59] They had gotten so entrenched in this idea that God's on our side and everybody else is the bad guys. Everybody else is the enemies. But God's with us in this god of vengeance. He'll get our back, as were his people. And now the writer of Hebrews actually says, hey, Jewish people who aren't accepting the blood of the new covenant, who aren't believing in faith, the death of Jesus on the cross, who aren't responding to the conviction of the Holy Spirit as he's opening your eyes to see the gospel of Jesus so that you would believe you're rejecting the gospel. Hey, watch out. Or you might find the god of vengeance comin after you. The Jewish people, they want to see in that plot twist right there.

[00:52:39] Well, he could actually come after me because of my sin. You have got a theory that I want to share with you here tonight.

[00:52:48] The reason we don't talk about God being a god of vengeance isn't because the Bible isn't saying it. It's because we're afraid of it. It's because some of us are still in our since.

[00:53:00] And all of us who've been saved out of sin, we're still very sensitive to the idea of someone judging us for our sin. And if you say that there is a God who has a zeal to execute justice.

[00:53:12] That should make people like us uncomfortable down here on planet Earth. If you are still in your sins, I am here to strongly warn you and to plead with your soul tonight that there is a god of vengeance who will.

[00:53:28] Judge you for your sake.

[00:53:30] And there's only one safe place that you can go to escape the judgment, this vengeance of God, this wrath that is coming. There is only one safe place that you can go. And it's the one place that the judgment of God already came, and that is the cross of Jesus Christ.

[00:53:48] You must find shelter in the cross of Jesus.

[00:53:51] You must believe that he already took the vengeance of God. He already took the wrath of God on your behalf.

[00:53:58] He already paid for all of your sins. And when you come and you believe in Jesus and you come to the cross and you see him there, you see his blood flowing down in the Holy Spirit, opens your eyes to see.

[00:54:10] This is the love of God. This is how he's going to forgive you. He's going to judge all of your sin on his son so that as you believe in Jesus, you receive his righteousness and you are forgiven for all of your sins.

[00:54:25] See, those of us who have believed in Jesus.

[00:54:27] We can how have no fear of judgment because there is no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. Can I get a man from anybody on that one?

[00:54:38] Judgment is common to everybody.

[00:54:40] And you either trust and where it already came in the cross of Jesus and the preciousness of his blood changes your mind about sin. And you turn from sin to live for Jesus or I'm here to tell you tonight that you are still even now under the vengeance of God.

[00:54:58] Vengeance is mine. He says to you, I will repay.

[00:55:04] We want to take a moment right now and give everybody a chance to confess your sin. So the band's going to come up and they're going to play a couple of songs, a couple of actual songs that are expressions of us confessing our sin before God. And if you are a believer in Jesus Christ, if your sin has been paid for on the cross, you should just remember how precious it is to have all of that wrath taken away and forgiveness and grace and mercy. And if you have any sin in your life right now, I encourage you to confess that before the Lord and maybe there's some here, you've never really dealt with your sin before a god of vengeance. I encourage you. Wow. Were singing these songs. These are songs of confession. Pour out your heart before God confess your sin. Turn from your sin and turn to him.

[00:55:58] You can't continue in sin and expect God to forgive you. But if you confess your sin, he is faithful and just to forgive you for all of it and to cleanse you from all of your unrighteousness because of the precious blood of Jesus Christ.

[00:56:13] So please don't step over the blood on your way to more. Believe in the blood of Jesus and be set free, forgiven, washed clean of all of your sin.

[00:56:26] And so let me pray and then we're gonna sing these songs of confession. Everybody, please pray with me. Father, we want to come to you tonight together and we want to agree.

[00:56:37] We want to confess with what we've read from the law, from the prophets, from the writings, from the letter to the churches, that vengeance belongs to you and you alone.

[00:56:50] And we acknowledge.

[00:56:52] That you are a god of vengeance. God and I pray that as your as your people. As all of us here at Compass, HP as this church, that we would never be ashamed of who you are. That we would never apologize for who you are. God, let us know you, we want to know you. We don't want to try to make up a god of our own understanding. We want you to reveal yourself to us and God. We ask that right now, you would change the way we think about you if we have not been thinking of you as a God who says vengeance is mine.

[00:57:26] Got to pray that you would open our eyes to see it here tonight.

[00:57:30] God, I pray that there would be people here tonight that are scared in their sin and they will confess that sense to you that they will see Jesus dying on the cross for that sense, shedding his blood to wash that sin away. And they will believe in Jesus here tonight. God, I pray for all of us who know we found refuge in the cross of Jesus. You know that we've been forgiven and cleansed and now we don't have to be afraid of your vengeance because you already poured it out on Jesus in our place. God, let us worship you now. Let us praise you in this place. Let us confess our sin.

[00:58:05] And so, Father, we we come to you now. We pray that you will hear these prayers of confession in Jesus name. A man.

[00:58:26] Red spear.

[00:58:43] Brad Spearin.

[00:58:50] Cast me away from the press. So. SEC. Not the speed.

[00:59:08] To sure. Nice face.

[00:59:17] Maneuver writes.

[00:59:57] Yes, I mean. That press is. Not that he's speaking from.

[01:00:14] We still want to be sure that South Beach.

[01:00:23] And renew the speak.

[01:00:35] The.

[01:01:00] Give us the.

[01:01:08] It's. It starts, Stu.

[01:01:19] Give us.

[01:01:26] SRS.

[01:01:31] Amen, if you're able to please stand. Sing those words again. We balla.

[01:01:50] Serdar. Stice.

[01:03:16] Source to.

[01:03:21] Give us the.

[01:03:31] They is so stupid.

[01:03:40] That's seems. Si, si, si.

[01:04:22] I just want to say, if anybody's out there and you think that this is too harsh, too intense. Who God really is, I just want to make sure that we all leave here knowing that God never has vengeance without mercy and there's never judgment without salvation. I want to take you back to one of the loose threads of our story in Numbers 31, where God spared the lives in his judgment.

[01:04:45] He spared the lives of all the young virgin girls. Remember that of all the daughters of Moab.

[01:04:53] I just want you to know that there's one more book we need to end with, and it's right here, it's one of the writings. It's tucked away towards the end of the riding's.

[01:05:01] It's just a small little book, but it's one of the got one of the books that God wanted to have written and he wanted everybody to read.

[01:05:09] It's a book called Ruth. One of the daughters of Moab.

[01:05:15] She got actually had mercy on the people of Midian, had mercy on the people of Moag, and one of their daughters actually became one of his people. And she actually is in the line of King David, this woman, Ruth, is actually listed in the genealogy of Jesus Christ, a Moabite woman. See, there is always Mersea. There is always redemption. There is always a way out of judgment. That's who God is. And that's what this story of Ruth is all about. It is a story of redemption, and maybe now we can understand it in its whole context, that this woman was one of those who lived whose what her people were spared the judgment. That's why there were daughters of Moab, see? And so I want to encourage every woman here, will you please go to the Redeemed Retreat? And see what God would want to teach us through this woman, Ruth. And I really want to encourage everybody here that if the hand of God is heavy upon you and you feel like you deserve to be judged, there was always a way of mercy. There is always salvation. And we'd love to talk to you here before you leave tonight. If you don't want the vengeance and the judgment, but you want the mercy, you want the forgiveness, we would love to talk to you before you leave. So thank you so much for being here. Have a great night, everybody.


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