It’s commonly thought that the reason Christians are not to take revenge on their enemies is because God is nice and wouldn’t do that sort of thing. God’s gentle, so we must be gentle is how it goes. It may be attractive to certain folks but in the face of true evil, it lacks the needed power. The power is lacking because this – God is nice, you be nice – answer to evil goes against the thrust of the Scriptures.
Miroslav Volf has helped me here. You don’t have to be a strict pacifist (I’m not) to acknowledge that no retribution upon enemies is a binding New Testament ethic for all disciples. The real reason we must not be vengeful is not that God will also not be but that God will do it better. And, when need be, He’ll do it for us. He’ll do it far better than we, as sinners ourselves, could ever do. God has appointed a day and a Man to whom He will enact justice upon evil. That man thankfully is not me (or you) and that day is not today. The Man is Jesus and the Day is His return.
The logic of the Scriptures goes like this:
Jesus Meek and Mild is never the basis for our peaceful love towards our enemies. Jesus King and Judge is the reason we don’t have to become little kings and judges over others. Volf has an answer for those who believe that the Christian should love their enemy/not retaliate since God is perfect, non-coercive love:
Soon you would discover that it takes the quiet of a suburban home for the birth of the thesis that human nonviolence corresponds to God’s refusal to judge. In a scorched land, soaked in the blood of the innocent, it will invariably die. As one watches it die, one will do well reflect about many other pleasant captivities of the liberal mind. Miroslav Volf, Exclusion and Embrace