"God blesses those who work for peace, for they will be called the children of God." Matthew 5:9
All over the world, people share a common desire for peace! But what is peace? The peace the world wants varies from the peace the Christian knows. The world sees peace as the absence of conflict and people being generally ‘nice' to one another. Peace in the Christian context goes further, saying peace is perfect harmony with God, other people, circumstances and self. Therefore perfect peace will not come until Jesus Christ comes again, and takes Christians to be with Him.
That doesn't give us as Christians a mandate to sit around not doing what we can for peace, because we are commanded to be peacemakers (Matthew 5:9), our God is a God of peace (1 Thessalonians 5:23), and the Kingdom of God is about peace in the Holy Spirit (Romans 14:17). Peace is to be our business!
In a world full of conflicts, such as conflicts between nations, conflicts between neighbours, conflicts even within families and conflicts within and between churches, Christians are to be peacemakers!With that in mind, here are some thoughts on what the Bible has to say on peace, to help you this week be a peacemaker:
1. Peace with God
Justified by faith (Romans 5:1-2)
Christ is our peace between God and man and between men (Ephesians 2:13-18)
2. Peace with others
Live at peace with everyone (Romans 12:17-20)
Do everything possible which leads to peace and mutual encouragement (Romans 14:13-19)
Be a peacemaker - a sign of real wisdom producing a harvest of righteousness (Matthew 5:9, James 3:17-18)
3. Peace within/circumstances
Peace is a gift of God (John 14:27, 2 Thessalonians3:16)
Worldly peace requires manipulation of circumstances, God's peace comes regardless of circumstances
We have peace in troubled times - an untroubled, unfearful heart and mind (John 16:33)
Go in peace this Monday, into this week, knowing that the God of peace lives inside you if you are one of His children! Yesterday churches around the world celebrated the feast of Pentecost - the coming of the Holy Spirit as promised by Jesus. If you desire peace with God, with others and in all circumstances, ask this Holy Spirit who lives inside you to help you! If you would not consider yourself as one of His children, ask Him to help you become one!
Father, I pray that this week we will do all we can to be peacemakers and make a difference in world in conflict. I ask this through the Prince of Peace, Jesus Christ and in the power of the Holy Spirit who lives inside all those who have peace with you. Amen