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Confession of Faith, 1632
XIV. Of Revenge
As regards revenge, that is,
to oppose an enemy with the sword, we believe and confess that
the Lord Christ has forbidden and set aside to His disciples
and followers all revenge and retaliation, and commanded them
to render to no one evil for evil, or cursing for cursing, but
to put the sword into the sheath, or, as the prophets have predicted,
to beat the swords into ploughshares. Matt. 5:39, 44; Rom. 12:14;
I Pet. 3:9; Isa. 2:4; Micah 4:3; Zech. 9:8, 9.
From this we understand that
therefore, and according to His example, we must not inflict
pain, harm, or sorrow upon any one, but seek the highest welfare
and salvation of all men, and even, if necessity require it,
flee for the Lord's sake from one city or country into another,
and suffer the spoiling of our goods; that we must not harm any
one, and, when we are smitten, rather turn the other cheek also,
than take revenge or retaliate. Matt. 5:39.
And, moreover, that we must pray
for our enemies, feed and refresh them whenever they are hungry
or thirsty, and thus convince them by well-doing, and overcome
all ignorance. Rom. 12:19, 20.
Finally, that we must do good
and commend ourselves to every man's conscience; and, according
to the law of Christ, do unto no one that which we would not
have done to us. II Cor. 4:2; Matt. 7:12.
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