The peace Jesus offers us is
very different from the peace in the world.
Look up peace in a good
dictionary. Did Jesus come to bring
peace on Earth, like many think? Read Luke 2:13,14. Who will have peace? Now look at Matthew 10:34-40. Have you experienced conflict with your
family since turning to Christ? What
will bring peace between you and your family members? What does “peace” involve (verses
37-39)? To whom do we need to
remain loyal to keep the real peace of Jesus?
Who do you think will be at peace, the one who tries to save his life,
or the one who loses it for Jesus’ sake?
3:20-26. Do you have the
power to make peace with God? How are
we made righteous (being right before God) [verse
22]? How are we justified (verse 24)? What is it that prevents us from having righteousness of our own
(why do we need to be justified)? If
you answered “because we have sin” then you are closer to understanding God as
a peacemaker! Look up atonement in a good dictionary. Is atonement
synonymous with “making peace”? Jesus
Himself was the “peace sacrifice” or “peace offering” for our reconciliation
with God. He gave Himself up that we
might have peace. In Leviticus 4 and 5,
God shows Moses how to make peace with Him when the Israelites sinned. How much more does Christ’s blood cleanse us
from our sin, thoroughly (Hebrews 9:12-15)?!
Many people compromise truth
because they want peace at any cost.
They think peace means “the
absence of conflict”. Others think that
the only way to bring peace, or maintain an appearance of it, is to use force
or show superior power. Read Colossians 1:19-23. Who is Paul talking about in verses 19 and
20? What alienated us from God? How have we been brought near to God? How
do we partake of this peace-making process (look at the parallel between verse
22 and Romans
6:3,4)? Can we be reconciled
to God on our own terms, apart from the message of hope in the gospel (verse 23)? In what do we need to
be firm, unmoved and established? As
you can see, peace can only exist because
of truth. That’s why the truth must be defended (Jude 3)! Know Jesus, know peace.
No Jesus, no peace! Read Romans 1:18, 19 and Colossians 3:5,6. Why is God’s anger coming into the
world? Should we be found partaking of
the things that cause God’s wrath to come?
How must we live to be called peacemakers? List any ways that you recognize in
yourself that are not peace-making.
Perhaps your attitude when you drive and someone cuts you off, or when
someone at work is being demanding of your time, or if a brother or sister sins
against you or you against them in anger or with a bad attitude. Do you see how important it is to build on
the beatitudes? Being a peace-maker is
only possible if we recognize our spiritual poverty, grieve about our sin, give
over control of our lives to God, crave for His righteousness, seek to give
mercy and purify ourselves.
Our ministry is that of
reconciliation—bringing the Gospel of peace to men. As Christians, we give our lives up so that others may come to
have peace with God through our ministry.
Corinthians 5:17-21. Look up
reconcile in the dictionary. Why does reconciliation need to take place
between God and us (Read Isaiah 59:2)?
Did God count our sins against us? Through whom is God making His appeal
to mankind? What is our job description
as Christians? Who became sin for us in
order that we may have God’s righteousness (approval) [remember what we talked
about on Monday—Jesus being a “peace offering”]? How are we to tell people they can be reconciled to God (verse 20)? If you were following the passions of your heart, do you think
you could make a proper ambassador for Christ?
Timothy 4:16. If someone is
a true ambassador for Jesus, will his/her life show it?
Since God granted us peace, the confession of peace (how we show peace in our speech and actions)
in our lives illustrates whether or not that peace exists between God and
us. To be a peacemaker is to be meek
and pure, to contend (fight for) for the faith (Jude 3), and to suffer and be
wronged for the sake of peace. In his
first letter, Peter has much to say about suffering for doing good. Check out these passages and hide them in
your heart: 1
Peter 1:6-7; 2:19-25; 3:10-17; 4:12-19.