God’s glory came to earth…His transcendent and infinite greatness, the sum of His perfection took the shape of a tiny baby born in Bethlehem. God’s peace came to earth…the gift of reconciliation with our Creator came to us in the form of the Gospel Message, the Good News of salvation. God’s favor came to earth…His Good Will was lavished on us while we were yet far from Him, His Good Pleasure not to see any lost. Isaiah best sums it up, “For to us a child is born, to us a Son is given, and the government will be on His shoulders. And He will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” (Isaiah 9:6)
Everyone wants to live a successful, satisfied, and secure life…but what if yours is anything but. Maybe you’re unhappy in your workplace with a overbearing Boss and back-stabbing co-workers? Have you ever considered praying for them? I Timothy 2:1-2 tells us to pray for all of those in authority over us that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. Your intercessory prayers can change the atmosphere at work, and they can change people’s attitudes…yours included. Are you unhappy in your marriage or with family relationships? Would you be willing to start praying on behalf of those who are causing you pain right now? For again, your prayers can change situations, family dynamics, and bring peace into those difficult relationships. Because anytime we start praying for someone, our perspective changes about them…for we take on God’s view, not ours.
This verse is very specific in two points. The first relates to our responsibility in potentially volatile interactions. We are the only person that can control our own emotions, and what rests on us here in this verse is the obligation and charge to live at peace with others. The other point is that we can’t pick and chose who we live at peace with, for it states here we are to live peaceable with all human beings to the very best of our ability.
In the middle of desperate, troubling times our emotions can’t be trusted. But what can be trusted is what the Lord has done for us in the past…those landmarks of our life when God moved mightily. For it was in those turning points when we clearly were able to see His mercy and love demonstrated. And so It’s those remembrances we can fall back on today that will offer the most peace and comfort for our soul.
In this verse it tells us what the secret to having inner peace and security is. This assurance we can have can only be found within God’s Word. But it also means not just listening, but actually applying it to your life. And when we do this, there is no end to His peace for us. (Isaiah 9:7) For the Lord rewards the godly with all good things. (Psalm 103:5)
Sometimes it’s because of serious illness or loss…sometimes it’s the result of circumstances way beyond our control…but regardless, we can find ourselves without hope. There standing before us is no bright promise for things to come…only the bleak darkness of the here and now. But God’s intent…His plan and purpose for each one of us, is to give us hope and a future with Him. For God’s Will is only about doing good…His plans are perfect, His purpose for us, only the very best. So in place of our hopelessness, God promises joy… and in place of fear, He promises peace.
Do you realize just how much God loves you? He’s not stingy or tight-fisted with His compassion towards you. Nor does His unconditional love depend on how good you are any peculiar day …or how many “works” you have on your mental score-sheet. God’s grace and love towards you is generous, abundant, and more than enough to cover anything that happens to you today.
Paul writes to the Church in Corinth about orderly worship. He stresses to them that everything be done in a fitting and harmonious way. (I Corinthians 14:40) When we see disunity within the Body, we know this is not of God…for He is the God of peace. (Romans 15:33) As Believers, we need to be seeking balance and mutual agreement…not causing turmoil and commotion just to make a point. Many a Church has faced divided factions only to self-destruct rather than build bridges of unity. And Satan smiles every time a Church self-implodes rather than attempts to reconcile the Body.
In this contentious and ever argumentative world, it’s difficult to seek peace in every situation. But the key here is found in a verse in Hebrews 12:14, ” Make every effort to live in peace with all men and be holy.” Being holy means we live in a spiritual atmosphere where grace and mercy abounds despite the hostile environment around us. It’s where we consider others before ourselves and strive to be a peacemaker not a rabble-rouser.