Do not take revenge, my dear friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” says the Lord.
(Romans 12:19 NIV)
In Romans 12, the apostle Paul tells us not to take revenge because that’s God’s job (v. 19). He then goes on to say, “On the contrary: “If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head.” Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good” (vv. 20-21).
See, oftentimes the people who hurt us are expecting some kind of reaction. But when we choose to keep our peace and not treat them the way they’ve treated us, we end up winning in the fight against evil, “In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head” (v. 20). The way I see it, that’s the greatest form of payback! Remember Joseph’s words to his brothers, “As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good” (Genesis 50:20 NASV)? We don’t overcome evil with evil. We overcome evil with good. Unfortunately, many don’t overcome evil because they’re acting (or reacting) exactly as the enemy would like them to. We rise when we act like the Son.
Repaying evil with good is oftentimes the greatest payback.