You could own your own island, rule your own kingdom and be known worldwide – but if you don’t have peace, none of that matters. Peace is an internal, unshakeable calm in the midst of an external, tumultuous storm. It’s a sense of knowing everything will be o.k. when nothing really is. It is a state of harmony or blissful union.
It’s impossible to cover the broad scope of peace in one short lesson, but today, my objective is to show from Scripture that Jesus not only is the only one who can give us peace, but He’s also the only one who can be our Peace.
“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
A LITTLE BACKGROUND:
In the Old Testament, the Hebrew word for peace is shalom. It is said to be one of the most important theological concepts in the Old Testament. It’s associated with the idea of repaying or fulfilling a vow; of completing or repairing a relationship; of being safe, complete or at harmony with others; the absence of strife.
The New Testament equivalent is eirene. It is equally important in the New Testament and is used in every book of the NT except 1 John.
WHAT IT MEANS TO US:
In short, peace involves three areas of our lives – Peace with God, Peace of God and Peace with each other.
PEACE WITH GOD –
Jesus Gives Us Peace With God:
It is Jesus that restores our relationship with God that was lost in the fall. Because of sin, we were enemies with God.
“For if when we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life.” Romans 5:10 (NKJV)
1. Based on the Romans 5:10, how was reconciliation with God made possible?
Colossians 1:19-22 echoes the same truth as Romans 5:10. Our peace with God is only made possible through the blood of Jesus Christ. Would you take a few minutes and praise the Prince of Peace for reconciling you to God through His death on the cross? Without it, you and I would have no hope, no joy and no peace.
Jesus Is Our Peace:
“For He Himself is our peace, who has made both one, and has broken down the middle wall of separation, having abolished in His flesh the enmity, that is, the law of commandments contained in ordinances, so as to create in Himself one new man from the two, thus making peace, and that He might reconcile them both to God in one body through the cross, thereby putting to death the enmity. And He came and preached peace to you who were afar off and to those who were near. For through Him we both have access by one Spirit to the Father.” Ephesians 2:14-18 (NKJV)
2. According to the verses above, who is our peace?
3. Based on Ephesians 2:14-18, list what Jesus accomplished for us because He is our Peace.
PEACE OF GOD –
Life isn’t always easy. In fact, it’s seldom easy. But Jesus came, not only to give us peace with God, but also to give us the peace of God. As a Christian, I don’t have to do this life alone. I don’t have to drown in the ocean of my circumstances. I don’t have to be tossed to and fro as the waves of difficulties pelt my life. Because I have peace with God, I can also have the peace of God.
After recently losing my brother-in-law and my mom within a week, the Prince of Peace has taken on a new and vital meaning in my life. When my world seemed to be falling apart and I was losing ground, I felt my sweet Savior come in and carry me. The peace of God that passes all understanding is mine. It sustains me – even when my heart is hurting.
Having the peace of God does not mean you don’t experience pain; it means you have His peace in the midst of the pain. Only God can do that.
Oh, please read Phil 4:6-7 in the Amplified with me, sweet sister! It’s a beautiful explanation of what Christ has done for me during these difficult days of loss. He truly has given me His unexplainable peace and mounted guard over my heart and mind. And you can be assured that He wants to do that for you too!
“Do not fret or have any anxiety about anything, but in every circumstance and in everything, by prayer and petition ([a]definite requests), with thanksgiving, continue to make your wants known to God. And God’s peace [shall be yours, that [b]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 [c]garrison and mount guard over your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:6-7 (Amplified)
1. What is the command in Philippians 4:6?
2. What are we to do in the midst of every circumstance?
3. What will be ours when we cast our cares upon the Lord in prayer with thanksgiving?
My heart hurts for those who have hurting hearts. People are suffering at the hands of tumultuous times and life can be hard. This time of year can be especially painful for people who are experiencing a Christmas season of firsts. First Christmas without a loved one, with a loved one in a foreign land, with the news of a terminal illness, with yet another lonely Christmas.
But it’s also a Christmas of “good” firsts for many. First Christmas with a new baby or grandchild. First Christmas as a married couple or in a new home or with an old friend.
Life is full of ups and downs. But God’s peace is a constant for His children. When the waves are crashing in around you, please let Jesus speak peace to your heart in the midst of the storm. He is the Prince of Peace and He longs to walk with you through those times when you feel as though you can’t take one more step.
PEACE WITH EACH OTHER:
Because we have peace with God and can walk in the peace of God, He also calls us to be at peace with each other. Peace is to be a defining characteristic of those who have been saved by the Prince of Peace.
Romans 12:18 says, “If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men.” and Hebrews 12:14 tells us to, “Pursue peace with all people, and holiness, without which no one will see the Lord:”
1. Are you at peace with those around you?
2. Do you have a relationship in need of restoration? If so, would you be willing to humble yourself and get that thing right today?
3. Do you sow seeds of peace of seeds of discord?
In Proverbs 6:15-22, the Lord gives us a list of things He hates. Last on the list is someone who sows seeds of discord among others in the community. We’re to be a people of peace, marked by peace because we have been bought with the blood of the Prince of Peace.
Sweet friend, if you are at war with anyone – if you have caused someone else’s heart to hurt – if you need to forgive someone who has hurt your heart – I pray that this lesson on peace will stir you to do jus that.
Life is short. We don’t have time to squabble when the world stands in need of a Savior. They need to see the children who belong to the Prince of Peace living beyond ourselves and loving in spite of ourselves.
If you are struggling with any of these areas or if you have questions about how you can have peace with God, I pray you will email me at stephanieshott (@) me (dot) com. I also would count it an honor to pray for you. If you have any prayer requests, please list them in the comments section or email them to me if they are of a personal nature.
Please know that you are the object of my prayers and I hope you will get your girlfriends in on this Bible study and encourage one another in the Word and in the Lord.