When the disciples James and John saw this (the Samaritans not welcoming Jesus), they asked, “Lord, do you want us to call fire down from heaven to destroy them?” But Jesus turned and rebuked them. Then he and his disciples went to another village.
Philip Yancey’s book, What’s so Amazing about Grace, tells about the hateful, hurtful letters he received from Christians who disagree with him about unimportant things. We all believe Christ was crucified and ascended into heaven. Christians shouldn’t reject other Christians over religious matters.
God never wants us to respond with hate or revenge. Hate and revenge are Satan’s demons. James and John, whom Jesus nicknamed Sons of Thunder, were rightly angry the Samaritans rejected their friend, Jesus. But their response provided a teaching moment. Can’t you picture Jesus shaking his head, saying “It is only the thief that comes to destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it abundantly?”
Father God, when I feel anger, help me not respond in rage. Remove every ounce of hate in me. Help me represent you by acting in love and showing grace. In Christ’s name I pray. Amen.