Q. What does the Bible says about revenge? How should a righteous person respond when being abused?
A. Yahshua the Messiah in Matthew 5:43-44 states, “Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt love thy neighbour, and hate thine enemy. But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you.”
Out of all the teachings we find in the New Testament, this is one of the hardest to follow. The last thing our human nature desires to do is to pray for those who mistreat and persecute us. However, as believers we are called to follow a different standard, one that reflects the Messiah.
However, this does not mean we place or leave ourselves in a situation that’s abusive. While we are not to hold grudges or animosity against those who have wronged us, there is no scriptural command to remain in that condition. Therefore, if we are being unjustly maltreated, we can take corrective action to alleviate that abuse.
For example, if we are being abused by our spouse, there is no scriptural mandate that requires us to remain in that relationship. In this case separation may be justified. However, in this specific instance, we must biblically remain unmarried or reconcile with our spouse, 1Corinthians 7:11. Marriage is for life and remarriage is not permissible as long as our spouse is alive, Romans 7:2-3. If someone is harassing you at work, the Bible allows a person to seek mitigation through management.
In summary, while there is no biblical requirement to stay in an abusive situation where we are being unjustly persecuted, we should not hold animosity or resentment, but must forgive by letting go of that anger. But again, this does not mean we cannot take corrective action to alleviate the abuse.