What does the Bible say about violence?


By BibleAsk Team


Violence is defined as the use of physical force so as to injure, abuse, damage, or destroy. It is the natural outcome of sin. God created the world perfect (Genesis 1:31). But after the fall, sin spread like cancer. And the earth was filled with violence” (Genesis 6:11) so much so that the Lord decided to end all the misery by the flood (Genesis 6:13).

Violence is not merely an outward act. It originates in the mind that harbors evil hateful thoughts (Matthew 15:19; Proverbs 13:2). And these evil thoughts bring forth “bloody crimes” (Ezekiel 7:23). The Lord warns those who do violent acts and oppress the poor, “Woe to those who scheme iniquity, who work out evil on their beds! When morning comes, they do it, for it is in the power of their hands. They covet fields and then seize them, and houses, and take them away. They rob a man and his house, a man and his inheritance” (Micah 2:1-2). And He asks them to repent of their wicked acts of violence (Ezekiel 33:11).

Because of His loving nature, God finds all evil hateful and its existence in men loathsome. Our loving Father gave His life to save His creatures (John 3:16). Although Jesus spoke with authority, He never coerced His listeners. All men were drawn to Him by His kindness and love.

Jesus was mistreated yet, he didn’t use violence against his enemies (Isaiah 53:9). So, the idea of violence goes against God’s nature. In fact, Jesus came to this earth to put an end to sin and violence. “Behold, My Servant, whom I uphold; My chosen one in whom My soul delights. I have put My Spirit upon Him; He will bring forth justice to the nations” (Isaiah 42:1-3).

God will judge those that practice violence (Psalm 11:5 also 139:19). And He calls them to, “Do justice and righteousness, and deliver the one who has been robbed from the power of his oppressor. Also do not mistreat or do violence to the stranger, the orphan, or the widow; and do not shed innocent blood in this place” (Jeremiah 22: 3 also Ezekiel 45:9).

Love Your Neighbor

The opposite of violence is love and it is a divine quality that God has exhibited throughout the ages, and it comes to man as a fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22,23). Paul admonishes the believers to act “with all humility and gentleness, with patience, showing tolerance for one another in love” (Ephesians 4:2).

The Christian’s kindness is to be shown not only to fellow members but also to nonbelievers. “Let your gentle spirit be known to all men” (Philippians 4:5). Believers are to be “gentle, peaceable” (1 Timothy 3: 3) and not “quarrelsome, but be kind to all, able to teach, patient when wronged” (2 Timothy 2:24).

God Protects and Judges

God protects His children from violence. David affirms this truth, “My God, my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold and my refuge; my savior, You save me from violence” (2 Samuel 22: 3). As his faithful shield had often warded off the thrusts of his enemies that were sent to destroy him, so God had repeatedly saved David from the enemy of his soul, Saul (Psalm 18:48).

Even if the Lord permits His faithful ones to suffer violence at the hand of their persecutors, He will not permit their suffering to go unavenged (1 Samuel 26:21; 2 Kings 1:13; Psalms 116:15). The tried souls are loved by their Savior especially when they are suffering for the truth’s sake. So, the Lord assures His faithful that “their blood will be precious in his sight” (Psalm 72:14 also 140:1-4).

In His service,
BibleAsk Team

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