Although he was abused, he never tried to get even. And when he suffered, he made no threats. Instead, he had faith in God, who judges fairly. 1 Peter 2:23 (CEV)

“Although he was abused, he never tried to get even.”

What a statement of strength, love and faith about Jesus Christ! When abuse happens, those who suffer the abuse may withdraw into a shell and lose themselves in the pain of the wound. Others may strike back at the abuser or become an abuser themselves using their victims as a way of ‘getting even’ with the offender in their own lives. 

Abuse, by definition is the improper treatment of someone else. Physical abuse brings harm to one’s physical body, but bruises heal. Emotional abuse is harder to diagnose. Emotional abuse leaves much deeper scars; the bruises are not seen by the human eye; the pain can last a lifetime.

Jesus Christ was abused for us. He suffered emotionally, physically and spiritually on our behalf. That is refreshing to me for two reasons. First of all, when I’m treated unfairly he completely understands my pain. He’s felt the pain of rejection. He’s heard the voices of insult and false accusation. He was misrepresented and misunderstood. If you are a victim of abuse, you have someone who knows how you feel.

The fact that Jesus was abused also helps me realize how I can best handle abuse. Jesus didn’t get angry at his abusers. As God in the flesh he could have wiped them out with a single word, but he made no threats. Why? How was he able to endure the words and actions of evil people against his body and emotions?

It was faith. Faith gave Jesus Christ the power to endure the abuse leveled against him. Most of us put our faith in ourselves ultimately. We rely on our own power to endure, our own power to plow through the wilderness. When we are mistreated and abused the biggest damage is done to our identity. We believe we are worthless. We blame ourselves. We become angry and bitter.

On the other hand, when our identity is placed in the hands of a loving, all-powerful and forgiving God, we endure the attacks because our value is secure as a result of his power. If today, you are a victim of abuse, not matter how harsh and how unfair, remember this. The God of Heaven sent his own Son, Jesus Christ, to earth to live among us. He was abused and beaten on your behalf so you could experience the love of His father.

The wounds you bear may never heal completely, but a relationship with him is like soothing oil that heals to the very depth of your soul. Come to him. He knows how you feel.

PRAYER: Lord Jesus, I pray today for those who are the victims of evil acts that have destroyed their lives. I ask that they may find the relief that comes from a relationship with you. Thank you for enduring all you did for me. Thank you Father for making me who I am. Amen.