Revenge or Repentance?

I realize its been awhile greycoats.  My life has been occupied with full time parenting, seminary, and part-time (if there is such a thing) ministry.

Oh and we just had our second child……David Hawks Ruland.  Even so, with personal matters and apologies aside…I must say that the topics of conversation around this blog have grown a bit stale.  This phenomenon is largely due to my own lackadaisical attitude toward blogging as of late.  But, I and my fellow greycoats are far from throwing in the towel.  There is a range of topics which are begging to be explored here.  I’d like to submit one now.

Do we want revenge or do we want repentance?

I’ve co-moderated this blog for nearly two years.  The fluctuations in my own Christian experience: from Charismatic, to Charismatic-Reformed, to Reformed Charismatic, to Reformed to……….(wait for it) Confessionally Reformed……..are nothing short of amazing to me.  However, I am still working through a much more basic practicum…the matrix of the fallen heart.

Ah, yes, a devotional post…from Mr. Polemical.  I’ve seen the feedback, I have the stats at my fingertips, and I myself have groaned at ‘devotional posts’ on several occasions.  The “Todd Bentley is a Heretic” posts are always so much more popular.  But it is time.

The time for me to probably alienate many of you has come.  And I simply ask: Do we want revenge or repentance from our Charismatic ex-friends, ex-pastors-apostles-prophets-what-have-you?  I know I’ve taken the high-road here before in dealing with matters of intention.  Some would say that intention is one thing though and contention is another.  Yet my contention has sprung from my intention.  This intention has been to destroy my enemies.  Let that sink in.

My enemies have been the Charismatic/prophetic movement/3rd heaven seeking, neo-Montanist leaders of this century.  I have wanted their destruction.  I have wanted revenge.  I have not wanted their repentance.  If there had been repentance I’m sure that I would have cried to God about it.  Cried in a way similar to Jonah, who was disappointed in his hopes of revenge against the people of Nineveh.

The sign of Jonah.  What was my desired sign?  The destruction of my enemies.

I offer no qualifier, no disclaimer, no apology for my true heart hate.  I was wronged.  I was deserted.  I was let down by men of faith who had formerly made me believe in the certainty of a realm, a flow, a constantly uninterrupted relational-experiential-reality with a radical God.

I pray now that this radical God would root out revenge in our hearts.  Friends, please know that compromise is not the cry of my heart.  But…I am losing my stomach for revenge.  Perhaps it will sicken me to the point of lasting repentance.  I hope that it will.  Whether the former diatribes of my mind have any cut I have no wit. I do know that the edge of the surgeon’s knife is not of my sharpening. Likewise this….new winds are bringing me to realms of repentance formerly unknown.  God make this work in me.  Temper me.  Let me cut with compassion not rampage with revenge.  Peace…………to all of our friends…..and enemies.



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14 responses to “Revenge or Repentance?

  1. desean jones

    Thank you, Nate. My heart also is changing and being humbled before my God. I am not sure what a Confessionally Reformed belief is? I am attending an RCUS church and trying to learn where they are at. My family think I am getting too far out, in the negative sense. I want the truth.

    Congrates on the birth of your son!

  2. WOW!
    Nate, that’s the sign of healing and true maturity in The Lord. Just last week I posted something on “A man after God’s Own Heart”, which actually deals with this same thing!
    Bless you Brother, and congrats on the baby!
    In Yahushua, Christ Jesus

  3. Diane S.

    Congratulations on the birth of your son! I hope all of you are adjusting okay…I remember those days of sleep deprivation vividly. 🙂

    You have brought up a good point. There is a fine line between wanting justice and revenge. Is it wrong to want God to do justice and stop those who do great harm to others and His cause?

    I think part of the reason that we slide down the slippery slope of revenge, is because it often appears that God is doing nothing. If Ananias and Sapphira dropped dead over one lie, why is it that He allows much greater atrocities?

    Of course, I don’t know the answer, and probably won’t in this life. That’s where I have to embrace the mystery of it all…and chose to let Him deal with it rather than taking matters in my own hands.

  4. Congrats on the new addition to the Ruland clan.

    I wish I had something profound to say in light of this post, but I don’t. I’m still repenting for my cutting tongue. I just hope to speak the truth in love.

    Peace be with you..


  5. TimH

    Congratulations to the Ruland Family for the birth of your new child. Mom is doing well I assume?

    Thanks for the post Natrimony.

  6. mbaker

    I extend my congratulations to you also, Nat. And great post, by the way.

    God bless.

  7. Mama is great. Baby Hawks is apparently the most chill out baby ever.

  8. Congrats on the child!

    I appreciate your heart, always have. My affection for you, Jarrod, and Devin. (not sure Devin is around anymore) has always been genuine. I recognize that you had been deeply hurt. And as a member of the “other side”…

    I repent on their behalf. I repent for all those including myself who have at times taken ones personal and public ministry more seriously than the man Christ Jesus.

    I repent if my words have ever been cutting in wanting revenge at your revenge.

    The only place of honor or glory any man should stand is in humble, obedient submission to only wise King whose grace we are hidden inside.

    Bless you Nathan. Bless all of you as we all grow in the grace and wisdom of Christ.

    Though at times we’ve fought- I consider you brothers and sisters in the faith. I have even learned much from you all.

    much love


  9. Come on Zack, you can’t repent for someone else!

    (Not meaning to be snipey; a theological observation if you will).


  10. Pat

    As a new comer to visiting sites like yours (it has only been the last three months or so). Iam very leery of some of them. God has been dealing with me on really seeing truth and not being deceived. My personal experiences and exposure to this type of hype in the supernatural realm was on a much smaller scale than I’m sure many of you have been exposed to. Mine was small rural churches, but the tugging of the Holy Spirit was still there and of course dismissed as “there must be something wrong with me, everyone else seems to be more than fine with what’s going on.” Currently not in a local church, do attend a small Bible study that is far removed from this type of hype. Through the Word of God, I have looked into those things that have never sat right and of course have been looking for the roots of what the small local rural churches, I have been personally involved in, believe and have followed the trail back to Toronto, Brownsville, K.C. etc. I have found some excellent information on these sites, but my concern was that many of them were ultra critical (rightfully so) but still to the point of being bitter and very angry ( biting and devouring). Hence my concern of being led down the wrong path again. So I have said all that to say how much I appreciate your “Revenge or Repentance” comments. Thank you and God Bless

  11. I said including myself…

    bless you Bill.

  12. Pat,

    Keep following Jesus. The bitterness and disillusionment will fade. It has to if we follow him. Research is good though, it may help someone else avoid the pitfalls that you have stumbled into. Plus, it will only help you to be more theologically discerning in the future.


  13. wendyC.

    That was a terrific post. Made us see God working in you and changing your heart. Made me immediately check my heart too and ask the Lord what is motivating me when I engage the whole Apostolic/Prophetic mindset. I think the whole spiritual path laid out also was interesting. I am also trying to figure out what I want to call myself right now. I think I am Charismatic/Reformed, but could actually be Reformed/Charismatic. I am also wondering why this Charismatic girl is always reading books by Presbyterians. (I am reading “The Reason for God”)
    Thanks for your transparency and God Bless.

  14. >I am also wondering why this Charismatic girl is always reading books by Presbyterians.

    Part of God’s plan for your life, I’m sure….

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