‘Do not repay evil with evil…’ 1 Peter 3.9
The word ‘evil’ is very strong. However, Peter is probably using it here in the sense of ‘what is not good’. The analogy of light versus darkness is powerful and encouraging in this context, and we are all called to fight against the darkness by turning on the light.
Every time you take a stand against lashing out, seeking revenge or holding on to bitter thoughts, then you are actually switching on the light in a dark situation. What often holds us back and prevents us taking such a step is the fear that someone may be getting away with something, being let off. Seeing this in terms of light and darkness puts a new perspective on it. When we choose not to repay evil with evil we are actually bringing the light of the presence of God into hurtful situations. This is what opens the door for total transformation. No-one has got away with anything, but the door has been opened and God has now been brought into the darkness.
When you come across something that ‘is not good’, and this may even be today, take a stand and do your best to bring light into that situation. In this way you will be opening the door for God.
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The Revd John Ryeland, Director of The Christian Healing Mission