Read Psalm 9
Focus on verse 11-12
The term karma has its origin in Hindu and Buddhist religions. It is the belief that one’s actions in this life determine what one’s next life will be like. Though western culture typically does not subscribe to the concept of re-incarnation, we have hi-jacked the term to describe situations where the evil intentions of a person come back to bite the perpetrator in the proverbial backside.
Though the idea of karma is hardly a biblical principle, it would seem that there might be a sense in which the idea has some biblical validity. In today’s reading, the psalmist writes “Sing praises to the Lord, who sits enthroned in Zion! Tell among the peoples his deeds! For he who avenges blood is mindful of them; he does not forget the cry of the afflicted.”
For those who choose to rebel against God and plot evil against those who follow Him, this is a stern warning. “He who avenges blood… does not forget the cry of the afflicted.” As I consider the plight of Christians who faced horrific persecution throughout history, and who even currently in parts of the world are suffering unspeakable acts of terror at the hands of what appear to be demonic extremist ideologies, I wonder what God is thinking as He observes all this. While I admit I do not understand why He would allow such suffering, I am confident in that His mercy is great and His justice is perfect. The blood of those who choose to suffer rather than deny the name of Jesus will one day be avenged, but God will bring it about in His time, and in His way in a manner that does not multiply the injustice.
In Romans 12:19 the Apostle Paul writes “Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave it to the wrath of God, for it is written, ‘Vengeance is mine, I will repay, say the Lord.’” Another way to say this might be “Don’t take revenge into your own hands, just allow karma to takes its course.” I have written previously that evil has a way of destroying itself. This is in part because there is no honor among thieves, and in part because God is still in control and has a way of bringing negative consequences upon those who rebel against Him. It does not always happen according to the manner in which we think it should, but we don’t see the whole picture.
What we should do is sing praises to the Lord, tell others of His deeds, and allow Him to avenge the cry of the afflicted. God has a way of bringing about what we might call karma without being unjust in the process. Something those who walk in obedience to Him really don’t have to worry about.