Thursday, 19 December 2013


Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you." John 14:27 (ESV)

So I've been contemplating the subject of PEACE recently and thought I would share my thoughts with you, as this mini study was a real encouragement and blessing to me.

Many of you may well think that this is a fitting subject for a meditation as peace is a Christian theme, ideal and concept, and you would be absolutely right. Peace is a theme that runs throughout the Word of God, it is woven throughout its pages and forms part of the very character of our God! Peace is just one of the many things that God wants for and gives to his people.

I find the following an excellent definition of God's peace:

"The harmonized relationships between God and man, accomplished through the gospel, and the sense of rest and contentment thereon."

By contrast, the world in which we live today knows very little of true peace, many individuals have spent their entire lives pursuing peace and have never truly seen peace, whether it be for individuals, communities, countries and nations. Romans 3:17 says "the way of peace they have not known..." The reason is that sin is rife in the world and "the whole world lies in the power of the evil one" (1 John 5:19). 

In contrast, God is a God of peace, he is not the author of confusion but of peace (1 Cor 14:33), he is a God who loves to pardon, and reconcile to himself those who repent and believe on his Son!

Of course, peace is also closely associated with our Lord Jesus Christ, for remember that in prophecy he is referred to as "the Prince of Peace" (Isa 9:6) and peace was also proclaimed at his birth (Luke 2:14). I also believe that Christ was marked by peace throughout his earthly ministry, and it was part of his character for he possessed all those wonderful divine attributes, evenly and fully in his lovely character! I think he exuded peace from his person and I believe that this peace was a big draw for the people around him, surely they had never met anyone like this before, who had a peace within like nothing they had ever seen before! He could also bring peace to any event or circumstance ("peace be still" to the storm on the lake) and also to individuals ("go in peace") and as he prepared to leave his disciples it was peace that featured largely in his final teaching to them; "my peace I give unto you".

When he went to the cross, we know this was to do the work that would enable us to be reconciled and brought near to God, it was to bring about peace! "he made peace through the blood of his cross" (Col 1:20) We also know that "we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ" (Rom 5:1). And so it comes as no surprise that peace characterizes the gospel message that we preach!It is known as the gospel of peace (Rom 10:15) and when we preach this good news we know that we are "preaching peace by Jesus Christ" (Acts 10:36).

Finally, for us believers on the Lord Jesus Christ, we know that the peace of God is something that we should know day-to-day in a practical way, to appreciate our relationship with God and all that he has done for us and through us! We know from Galatians 5 that peace is a fruit of the Spirit, so we should be producing this in our lives, for others to see and to benefit from. We also know that we should "let the peace of God rule (control and umpire) in your hearts" (Col 3:15). So it seems to me that we have a challenge here, to go after and cultivate conditions in our lives so that we appreciate more and more the peace of God. We cannot expect to have this blessing large in our lives if we are not spending time with God, reading his word, or living worldly or sinful lives that are not pleasing to him. May we challenge our hearts about this!

I found the following verse in Philippians 4 very helpful especially when Amplified:

"And God's peace [shall be yours, that tranquil state of a soul assured of its salvation through Christ, and so fearing nothing from God and being content with its earthly lot of whatever sort that is, that peace] which transcends all understanding shall garrison and mount guard over your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus."

What a wonderful peace is ours! Over this Christmas holiday let us all seek to know more of this peace on a daily basis as we spend more time in God's presence and with his word.

Yours in Christ, Mark

1 Kings 19: Elijah and God

I was listening to a podcast the other day which was speaking about 1 Kings 19 and it reminded me of how very relevant this passage is to ou...