Yesterday we were thanking the Lord that He is our Prince of peace and that He brings His shalom into our lives. Today we are looking at the amazing truth that we as God’s children are called to bring that peace into our sore and hurting world. In what is known as the sermon on the mount Jesus said ‘Blessed are the peacemakers for they will be called the children of God’. That’s us!! As we carry His peace we get to be known as the children of God, because of course Jesus is the ‘Prince of Peace’, and we as God’s children now share His spiritual DNA.
We are talking here about ‘peacemakers’ not ‘peacekeepers’. This is important because, as we know, although peacekeepers can do a great deal of good, sometimes, as we saw in Sarejevo where the UN peacekeeping force had no authority to stop a massacre, peacekeepers may be powerless to prevent trouble. It can be the same for us if ‘keeping the peace’ just results in us being passive and ineffective.
Peacemakers, the kind Jesus is talking about here are, I believe, going to be those who have seen that ‘peace’ is a weapon of warfare. It is something we can use actively against the pain and chaos that the enemy seeks to release into our world. If we look at the soldiers armory in Ephesians 6:10-17 we see that the feet – for advancing- are fitted with the gospel of peace. Bringing peace to someone or a situation therefore, when we act, or speak, or pray in His name, is a very significant part of our warfare in this life.
As we said yesterday, the shalom peace of God is not an absence of trouble but it is in fact the powerful presence of God released into a situation and, as His ‘ecclesia’, His representatives on earth, we have that authority to move in against the enemy however he is manifesting himself. Matthew 16:18. We have been given the authority to bind and loose whatever has been already bound or loosed in heaven. We are called to partner on earth with our Prince of Peace now reigning in heaven.
Jesus primarily bought peace between God and mankind through a gruesome death on the cross. The Hebrew word shalom however, which is used in Isaiah 9:6, also carries the sense of total wellbeing, of welfare, health, and prosperity as well as peace. He now gives us, His children, His authority to bring to others that offer of peace with God, and the authority also, I believe, to destroy enemy strongholds that are destroying peace and wellbeing in many different ways here on earth. He gives us spiritual weapons that ‘have divine power to demolish strongholds’ 2 Corinthians 10:4. This ‘peace’ is powerful and we are called as peacemakers to release this peace into our world.
Our thanksgiving today is that we, those of us who are ‘in Christ’, have this incredible privilege of being carriers of God’s peace into our world. We are bringers of peace, and whether that is between nations or neighbours, church members, colleagues, friends or family members, we are not powerless in the face of all that the enemy does to destroy peace in this world. We can thank the Lord that far from being overcome by the atmospheres all around us, we are atmosphere changers as we release the peace that He imparts to us into the world around us.
Join me today in saying ‘Thank you Jesus for the privilege and the fun of partnering with you in this way, please increase our faith and effectiveness as we walk with you, Amen’.