Spiritual Growth Series: Peace
by Dennis Michelson
Romans 5:1 and Philippians 4:7
Peace is not the absence of conflict but the realization of adequate resources. It is quite possible for someone to have peace with God but not experience the peace of God.
1. The Source of Peace is God
The term peace appears over 400 times in the Bible. There are 6 specific references in the New Testament to the "God of Peace." Even in the Old Testament, God instructed His people to declare peace before they went to war (Deuteronomy 20). There are three ways to tap into the source of peace.
(a) Sovereignty - Ultimately all of our anxiety, frustrations, and fighting stem from our lack of trust in the sovereignty of God. If God be for us then who can be against us? What is it that has caused you to resort to conflict? It is usually our desire to change those things or people in our lives that tend to rob us of our peace. Do these things come into our lives by accident or appointment? Is God in control or not?
(b) Scripture - Thou will keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on thee, because he trusts in thee. Our mental ruminations need to be more on Scripture and less on strife.
(c) Supplication - Philippians 4:7 tells us to worry about nothing but pray about everything.
2. The Enemy of Peace is Sin
We have three enemies according to I John 2:15-17
(a) World - the cultural system designed to direct away from doing the will of God. It teaches us to know the price of everything but the value of nothing.
(b) Flesh - Our old fallen nature bent on conflict.
(c) Devil - The ultimate enemy who trives on war, conflict, lies, and destruction.
We have three battlefronts according to James 4:1-4
(a) War with each other
(b) War with ourselves
(c) War with God
Note that the cause of a and b stems from our "war" with c.
3. The Minister of Peace is the Christian (Matthew 5:9)
You can only spread the peace of God if you have the peace with God.
4. The Blessing of Peace is Godliness
The peacemaker does not avoid the battle; instead, he transforms the battle into a ministry of reconciliation.
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