Ezekiel 35 … Consider Him Who Will Avenge His Own

“Because you have said, ‘These two nations and these two lands will be mine, and we will possess them,’ although the Lord was there, 11 therefore as I live,” declares the Lord God, “I will deal with you according to your anger and according to your envy which you showed because of your hatred against them; so I will make Myself known among them when I judge you,” (35:10-11).

Okay, let’s just admit it. We live in an age that is absolutely obsessed with superheroes. I also have to admit that I have actually seen very few superhero films on the big screen; but I vividly recall watching Superman in black and white every Saturday morning in the late fifties. Then, in the mid-sixties, an extremely campy Batman, made its way onto our TV screens each week.

But I also have my own superhero story. I was only five years old, and the elementary school where I attended kindergarten was just eight tenths of a mile from my home in a southern suburb of San Diego. There were several kids from the neighborhood that made the walk together to and from school. San Diego weather was conducive to being outdoors, and walking seemed to be the favored option of transportation. We had a crossing guard that marched us up to a particular intersection, and after we had all marched across the street like little ducklings following mother duck, we were set loose to make the rest of our way on our own. But there was an older boy who had made it his life’s ambition to pick on me, a lot. That is, until the day an older neighbor friend of the family was waiting for him at the intersection. And our family friend was able to convince my assailant that his daily trouncing had to stop; and so it did.

There is just something about a hero fighting for the little guy and justice that finds a place in the hearts of people, globally. I happen to believe it is because we were created to trust One Who would fight for us; One Who would secure justice for us when we are wronged; One Who would comfort us with the fact that He Will Avenge His Own.

And today felt just a little bit like that. I don’t mean to be disrespectful in comparing God to a comic-book superhero, for surely there is no one who is in His league. But superheroes strike a conceding note deep within; we need someone other than self to rescue us. And we want someone to Avenge the wrongs in this world.

We were created to live in fellowship with Holy God, in His place of perfection; and the absence of righteousness, along with the prevalence of injustice in our world, makes us long for the day when He Will Avenge His Own.

Today, in supernatural-hero fashion, the Lord Who had assured His people of His Shepherd’s Heart, now addresses a prophecy against Mount Seir and all of Edom; a prophecy that would be fulfilled by Him Who Will Avenge His Own.

Thus says the Lord God, “Because Edom has acted against the house of Judah by taking vengeance, and has incurred grievous guilt, and avenged themselves upon them,” 13 therefore thus says the Lord God, “I will also stretch out My hand against Edom and cut off man and beast from it. And I will lay it waste; from Teman even to Dedan they will fall by the sword. 14 I will lay My vengeance on Edom by the hand of My people Israel. Therefore, they will act in Edom according to My anger and according to My wrath; thus they will know My vengeance,” declares the Lord God, (Ezekiel 25:12-14).

From NIV Study Bible:

The counterpart of Israel’s restoration as the Lord’s people is the desolation of her enemies —of which Edom serves here as representative. “Because you have had everlasting enmity and have delivered the sons of Israel to the power of the sword at the time of their calamity, at the time of the punishment of the end,” (36:5)

Given the historic relationship between Israel and Edom (Israel’s relative, Jacob and Esau being twins, Ge 25:21-30, and constant enemy, from whom brotherhood was sought but seldom found)… Eden had to be dealt with before Israel could find peace.… the spiteful treatment of Judah by the Edomites at the time of Jerusalem’s fall (at the time of their calamity) was especially reprehensible (Edom looted Jerusalem in 586 B.C.)

God would deal with Edom the way they had dealt with His people; and forever true to His Word, He Will Avenge His Own.

As you rejoiced over the inheritance of the house of Israel because it was desolate, so I will do to you. You will be a desolation, O Mount Seir, and all Edom, all of it. Then they will know that I am the Lord,”’ (35:15).

Consider Him Who Will Avenge His Own

  • He Will Avenge His Own; He is the One Who will render vengeance on His adversaries.
    • “Rejoice, O nations, with His people;
      For He will avenge the blood of His servants,
      And will render vengeance on His adversaries,
      And will atone for His land and His people,”
      (Deuteronomy 32:43).
  • He Will Avenge His Own; His wrath is reserved for His enemies.
    • A jealous and avenging God is the Lord;
      The Lord is avenging and wrathful.
      The Lord takes vengeance on His adversaries,
      And He reserves wrath for His enemies,
      (Nahum 1:2).
  • He Will Avenge His Own; and the day is coming when His True and Righteous Judgments will put an end to all evil, corruption and immorality.
    • After these things I heard something like a loud voice of a great multitude in heaven, saying, “Hallelujah! Salvation and glory and power belong to our God; because His judgments are true and righteous; for He has judged the great harlot who was corrupting the earth with her immorality, and He has avenged the blood of His bond-servants on her,” (Revelation 19:1-2).

How do we respond to Him Who Will Avenge His Own?

Scripture is clear. We are not to avenge ourselves, for only God will bring vengeance that is perfect in keeping with His Holiness; only God Will Avenge according to His Truth, Righteousness, and Justice.

He Is Able and He Is Trustworthy. Let us learn from Him Who Will Avenge His Own, that we would seek to reconcile with our enemies as we consider all He has done to reconcile us through the sacrificial death of His Son.

For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life, (Romans 5:8).

Oh, let us pray we would learn to love as He has loved us. It’s true there is far too much evil in this world. But let us wait on Him Who Will Avenge His Own as we depend on His Holy Spirit, that we would not be overcome by evil. Oh, let us follow His example, that He would use us to love our enemies, that we might begin to respond like supernatural superheroes who overcome evil with good.

Never take your own revenge, beloved, but leave room for the wrath of God, for it is written, “Vengeance is Mine, I will repay,” says the Lord. 20 “But if your enemy is hungry, feed him, and if he is thirsty, give him a drink; for in so doing you will heap burning coals on his head.” 21 Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good, (Romans 12:19-21).

Let’s Grow Together!

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