SERMON DATE AND TITLE: 20120916: "Renouncing Retaliation"

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It is said that confession is good for the soul. If confession has soul-scrubbing possibilities, then this sermon gives me a platform for confession and a bit of soul-cleansing. On the 11th anniversary of 9/11 the United States Embassy in Benghazi, Libya was attacked, it's ambassador and three aides were brutalized and murdered. This is supposed to be because of a crude film trailer of a movie produced by a supposedly Jewish film maker, Sam Bacile, entitled, "The Innocence of Muslims."

          The 13 minute U-Tube trailer of the movie has gone viral and world-wide. Muslim's across the world have been mobilized into violent protest. Their religion DEMANDS retaliation and the death of anyone associated with and responsible for this awful film. Our embassies in Yemen, Egypt, Libya, Tunisia, Sudan, Tripoli, India, Morocco, Iran have experienced violent protesters. Mohammad's teaching in the Qur'an is explicit,

"Slay them wherever you find them. Drive them out of the places from which they drove you. Idolatry (They call Christian believers, "Worshippers of the Cross and see that as idolatry) is worse than carnage. . . . [I]f they attack you put them to the sword. Thus shall the unbelievers be rewarded: but if they desist, God is forgiving and merciful. Fight against them until idolatry is no more and God's religion reigns supreme. But if they desist, fight none except the evil-doers"(2:190–93).

Muslims cannot understand or comprehend American freedom of speech as guaranteed by our U.S. Constitution.

          Indignation and retaliatory rage boiled up inside of me as I read of the brutalizing and murder of our Ambassador, Christopher Stevens and three of his associates. International protocol declares that the land surrounding an embassy is that nation's soil and land. In a sense, this outrage by obligated Muslims was perpetrated on American soil. An embassy is like a church, it is a sanctuary and a haven.

          Here's my confession: I have never quite mastered the urge to physically retaliate against injustice. Indignation rises up in me and I want to do something, right then. Jesus has taught us restraint. In a sense the Word of God and the Holy Spirit have put a muzzle on my mouth and a hobble (restraint) on my feet to keep me more rational than reactive.

          This morning's sermon explores retaliation and Godly restraints on our impulsivity.


Pastor Phil  <><< 


September 16, 2012 - Pastor Phil Roland

Sheepfold Ministries



Romans 12:9-21 -  Luke 9:51-56

"The Middle East is ablaze with protests again. Israeli filmmaker, Sam Bacile, has produced a terrible attempt at film-making with his film, "The Innocence of Muslims. He has placed a 13 minute trailer on UTube. It's supposed to expose Mohammed as a fraud, pedophile and homosexual. It has incited Muslims all over the Middle East to riot."      Pastor Phil  <><<

"Be angry, and do not sin. Meditate within your heart on your bed, and be still. Selah    Psalm 4:4

"Be angry, and do not sin": do not let the sun go down on your wrath,

"Beloved, do not avenge yourselves, but rather give place to wrath; for it is written, "Vengeance is Mine, I will repay," says the Lord."         Eph.  4:26,27

"The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. 5 We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ."  2 Corinthians 10:4-5 (NIV)



            A. The Old Testament Law of Retaliation

            1. Blood for Blood is the way God taught -  Genesis 9:6
"Whoever sheds man's blood, By man his blood shall be shed;

                         For in the image of God He made man."

            2. An Eye for an Eye - Exodus 21:23-25
"But if any harm follows, then you shall give life for life, 24 eye

                         for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot, 25 burn for

                         burn, wound for wound, stripe for stripe."

            B. Islam Agrees with Judaism on Retaliation

                        1. Speaking against the Islamic god, Allah - Qur'an, Sura 33:57

                        "Lo! those who malign Allah and His messenger, Allah hath cursed                            them in this world and the Hereafter, and hath prepared for them the                doom of the disdained"

                   2. Misrepresenting Allah or Mohammed comes under a Curse

                        3. Allah's Followers given an Imperative -Qur'an, Sura 33:61

                        [continues from above] "Accursed, they will be seized wherever                                 found and slain with a (fierce) slaughter."

                        4. To Prove their Faith Islamists must Retaliate

                        5. Imam's command them not to be "Hypocrites"

                        6. To them a Hypocrite is one who does Nothing when Insulted                         7. Revenge is not an option for Islamists - Qur'an, Sura 2:216                           "Fighting is obligatory for you, much as you dislike it. But you may

                         hate a thing although it is good for you, and love a thing although it

                         is bad for you. God knows, but you know not"




          A. Wait on the Lord - Proverbs 20:22

     "Do not say, "I will recompense evil"; Wait for the LORD, and He will save you."

                        1. Don't attempt to do God's job

                        2. God Himself has promised to deal w/Injustice - Lev. 19:18

"You shall not take vengeance, nor bear any grudge against the

                         children of your people, but you shall love your neighbor as

                         yourself: I am the LORD."

                        3. Avoid "Getting Even" - 1 Thessalonians 5:15
                        "See that no one renders evil for evil to anyone, but always pursue

                         what is good both for yourselves and for all."

          B. Learn about Spiritual Warfare - Luke 9:51-56

                   1. Jesus demonstrates how to deal with evil

                        2. Pick your battles carefully

                        3. Don't allow smaller injustices to keep you from your mission

                        4. Jesus didn't come to Condemn or Destroy - John 9:56

                        "For the Son of Man did not come to destroy men's lives but to save

                         them." And they went to another village."

                        5. Get out of the way and let God's Spirit do the job

          C. Remember Haman in Esther 9?

                   1. Haman and his 10 sons were hung on the same Gallows

                            intended for Esther's Uncle

                        2. Our enemies hang themselves, given enough rope and time



            A. Resist Evil in yourself - 1 Thes. 4:10b,11,12

            ". . .But we urge you, brethren, that you increase more and more; 11 that you            also aspire to lead a quiet life, to mind your own business, and to work

             with your own hands, as we commanded you, 12 that you may walk

             properly toward those who are outside, and that you may lack nothing."

B. Know the Word of God - Psalm 119:11

            "Your word I have hidden in my heart, That I might not sin against You"

C. Practice Self-Control - 1 Peter 5:8,9

"Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a

             roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. 9 Resist him, steadfast in the

             faith, knowing that the same sufferings are experienced by your

             brotherhood in the world."

1. Discipline your mind

                        2. Do not allow Idle Thoughts to occupy your mind

                        3. Meditate on God's goodness - Philippians 4:8

"Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are

                         noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever

                         things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any

                      virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy--meditate on these things.

                        4. Remind yourself, "God's in Control"

                        5. Tell yourself, "You're not the Master of the Universe"

                        6. Surrender yourself to His control     




          A. Muslim's are commanded by their God, Allah, to seek revenge

          B. Christians are commanded NOT to Revenge

                        1. The Urge to Retaliate eats your soul

                        2. Retaliation consumes the creative energy of your mind

                        3. It is acid to your heart - Proverbs 4:23

                "Keep your heart with all diligence, For out of it spring the issues of life."

                        4. Retaliation usurps the Power and Authority of God

                        5. Retaliation places you in God's position                

          C. Retaliation is both Sweet and Deadly - Matthew 26:52              

            "But Jesus said to him, "Put your sword in its place, for all who take the

             sword will perish by the sword."

          D. Islam and Christianity are totally in Opposition to One Another

                        1. We cannot reconcile the Conflict

                        2. The conflict is both theological and spiritual

            E. My primary conflict is in myself - Galatians 5:17

            "For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; and

             these are contrary to one another, so that you do not do the things that

             you wish."

            F. Only Jesus can set me free from myself - John 8:36

            "Therefore if the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed."

                   1. Give every urge to retaliate to Jesus

                        2. Allow Him to have control in your life



Romans 12:9-21 (NKJV)
9 Let love be without hypocrisy. Abhor what is evil. Cling to what is good.
10 Be kindly affectionate to one another with brotherly love, in honor giving preference to one another;
11 not lagging in diligence, fervent in spirit, serving the Lord;
12 rejoicing in hope, patient in tribulation, continuing steadfastly in prayer;
13 distributing to the needs of the saints, given to hospitality.
14 Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse.
15 Rejoice with those who rejoice, and weep with those who weep.
16 Be of the same mind toward one another. Do not set your mind on high things, but associate with the humble. Do not be wise in your own opinion.
17 Repay no one evil for evil. Have regard for good things in the sight of all men.
18 If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men.
19 Beloved, do not avenge yourselves, but rather give place to wrath; for it is written, "Vengeance is Mine, I will repay," says the Lord.
20 Therefore "If your enemy is hungry, feed him; If he is thirsty, give him a drink; For in so doing you will heap coals of fire on his head."
21 Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.


Luke 9:51-56

51 Now it came to pass, when the time had come for Him to be received up, that He steadfastly set His face to go to Jerusalem,
52 and sent messengers before His face. And as they went, they entered a village of the Samaritans, to prepare for Him.
53 But they did not receive Him, because His face was set for the journey to Jerusalem.
54 And when His disciples James and John saw this, they said, "Lord, do You want us to command fire to come down from heaven and consume them, just as Elijah did?"
55 But He turned and rebuked them, and said, "You do not know what manner of spirit you are of.
56 For the Son of Man did not come to destroy men's lives but to save them." And they went to another village.


Luke 6:27-36 (NIV)
27 "But I tell you who hear me: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you,
28 bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you.
29 If someone strikes you on one cheek, turn to him the other also. If someone takes your cloak, do not stop him from taking your tunic.
30 Give to everyone who asks you, and if anyone takes what belongs to you, do not demand it back.
31 Do to others as you would have them do to you.
32 "If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? Even 'sinners' love those who love them.
33 And if you do good to those who are good to you, what credit is that to you? Even 'sinners' do that.
34 And if you lend to those from whom you expect repayment, what credit is that to you? Even 'sinners' lend to 'sinners,' expecting to be repaid in full.
35 But love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back. Then your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High, because he is kind to the ungrateful and wicked.
36 Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful.