Much is being said lately about peace. Countries at war need it. Presidents and heads of state talk about it. Popes promote it. Social leaders have plans for it. Desperate people all over the world in distressing situations desire it. There are peace processes, peace plans, peace talks and peace conferences. Actions that lead to peace whether it’s in families or on the world stage is difficult and takes a lot of work and talk is too often cheap and plentiful.
Jesus said something pretty interesting about himself regarding peace:
“Do not think that I came to bring peace on earth. I did not come to bring peace but a sword. For I have come to set a man against his father, a daughter against her mother, and a daughter in law against her mother in law; and a man’s enemies will be those of his own household. He who loves father or mother more than Me is not worthy of Me. And he who loves son or daughter more than Me is not worthy of Me. and he who does not take his cross and follow after Me is not worthy of Me. He who finds his life will lose it, and he who loses his life for My sake will find it. He who receives you receives Me, and he who receives Me receives Him who sent Me. He who receives a prophet in the name of a prophet shall receive a prophet’s reward. And he who receives a righteous man in the name of a righteous man shall receive a righteous man’s reward. And whoever gives one of these little ones only a cup of cold water in the name of a disciple, assuredly, I say to you, he shall by no means lose his reward.” – Matt 10:34-42
Think about that, “Do not think that I came to bring peace on earth.” This is Jesus, also called in the Bible, the Prince of Peace, telling us that he did not come to bring peace to earth.
Believing and trusting in Christ is going to bring us division more than unity because the Bible is not a book that can be twisted or manipulated if we are to understand it’s true meaning. It’s a book of truth. Jesus is the truth and not everyone is onboard with dealing with truth, especially in a world where truth is relevant. I wonder if this is why his command to love, forgive and bless our enemies is repeated over and over. The division that will occur should not be created by us, by our desires, ego or high ideas and philosophy. Our command is to love. Love others, love and bless our enemies.
Even more interestingly, Jesus also said: “Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.” John 14:27
Jesus shared this with his followers, or those he called his disciples. These are the people who have given up their ideas of what their lives should look like and are following him and his words. For these, Jesus has promised peace.
No matter what is going on in the world, we can find peace in Christ. He is the Prince of Peace. Don’t be overwhelmed by the news, just open up your Bible and read more about it.