Prince of Peace

Our world today is anything but peaceful. Many people are driven by fear, angry about the events of our world, protesting the injustices of racism or refugees, preparing for war, and even fighting a war of words within our country. As we prepare to celebrate the coming of the Prince of Peace (Isaiah 9:6), we are anything but peaceful.

Jesus said to His followers on the night He was betrayed and eventually crucified, “Peace I leave with you. My peace I give to you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Your heart must not be troubled or fearful” (John 14:27).

Jesus gives His peace to us today as an inheritance that will secure our composure and dissolve our fears (Philippians 4:7). It’s His peace that controls our hearts (Colossians 3:12-15). For “God has not given us a spirit of fearfulness, but one of power, love, and sound judgement” (2 Timothy 1:7). Jesus gives us His peace as we walk with Him by faith (2 Corinthians 5:7) rather than be stirred up by earthly fears.

Paris attacksJesus, Himself, felt troubled by His impending crucifixion (John 12:27), yet still trusted His Heavenly Father’s will to be done (Matthew 26:39,42). So, the peace that Jesus gives is not an exemption from conflicts and difficulties; it’s a part of taking up our cross to follow Him (Luke 9:23-24). Resting in His peace is not an escape from reality nor is it an excuse for passivity. In fact, His peace is anything but passive — it must be actively pursued because it doesn’t come naturally (Psalm 34:14Romans 14:19; Hebrews 12:14).

Peace will not come if we speak in words that inflame arguments or in ways that antagonize other people (1 Timothy 5:1–22 Timothy 2:1424–26). We should be quick to listen, slow to speak, slow to become angry (James 1:19) and even slower to post or comment on social media. The things that make for peace are refraining from verbal criticism and resisting cynical thinking by leaning on Jesus through dependent prayer (John 15:4, Galatians 5:22-23). We need to live peaceably with all people as much as we can (Matthew 5:9Mark 9:50Romans 12:18) because peaceful interpersonal relationships (including those on social media) produce godliness (James 3:18). When Peter rashly took matters into his own hands, Jesus admonished him to submit to the sovereignty of God (Matthew 26:52-54) because man’s anger does not accomplish God’s righteousness (James 1:20).

Protestors in ChicagoThe peace that Jesus gives us is not an absence of conflict, rather, it’s a settled confidence that comes from knowing that we are right with God and that one day Jesus will come for those of us who are waiting for His return (Isaiah 53:5Romans 5:11 Pe 2:24–25Titus 2:11-14). Not only is Jesus the God of peace, but we can experience the peace of God (Philippians 4:7). As fully devoted followers of Jesus who focus on this truth, we can experience supernatural peace in the midst of trouble and fear, just as Jesus did.
May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace today as you believe in Him so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit (Romans 15:13). May the God of peace Himself set you apart for His purposes completely. And may your spirit, soul, and body be kept sound and blameless for the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. He who calls you is faithful, who also will do these things (1 Thessalonians 5:23-24).  He is, after all, the Prince of Peace.
Follow me… as I follow Jesus Christ.

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