How To Be A Peacemaker In A World Without Peace

by Jack Wellman · Print Print · Email Email

The world has anything but peace, so how can you be a peacemaker in a world without peace?

No God, No Peace

The Bible says the way of peace, they know not, meaning, they don’t know the way to peace because they’ve not made peace with God, and they don’t even know God. You cannot have the peace of God until you’re first at peace with God. That peace comes through Jesus Christ, so you cannot be a peacemaker without being at peace with God, but after that, you can make more of a difference than you might imagine, but here’s the problem; the world does not know the way to peace. You may have to show it to them before they can recognize it. There might be peace treaties between nations, but how long will that last? There’s no guarantee it will last that long, because “there is no fear of God before their eyes” (Rom 3:18). That explains why “the way of peace they have not known” (Rom 3:17). Even in Isaiah’s day, he saw that “The way of peace they do not know, and there is no justice in their paths; they have made their roads crooked; no one who treads on them knows peace” (Isaiah 59:8). Not much has changed, has it?

Blessed Peacemakers

Notice that the word is “peacemaker,” or a maker of peace, so it doesn’t happen automatically. You have to make concerted efforts to try and make peace between people or groups. It’s not always possible, but we must at least try. That is part of our calling. When Jesus gave the Beatitudes, He addressed the poor in spirit, the meek, and those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, and of course, that’s found only in Christ, but He also said, “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God” (Matt 5:9). Those who are trying to bring peace into the world must first introduce the King of Peace, Jesus Christ. Only He can bring peace to others, and only then can we be more at peace with one another. I find it interesting that the peacemakers I’ve seen in action are often the poor in spirit, and the meekest of men and women, and those who have a hunger and thirst for righteousness, or a “right-ness” that they are seeking. It’s something they desire to bring to relationships. They lay the groundwork for peace in having a meek and quite spirit. A soft answer is often their response to angry words, and this is great for calming the anger of others (Prov 15:1). That is why Jesus said, blessed are those who seek to be peacemakers, as opposed to being one who stirs up contention and strife. Those are the ones who will be called the sons and daughters of God (Matt 5:9).

“If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone” (Romans 12:18)

Peacemaking

I have sat on several committees and boards, and I have found that pride can often get in the way of peace. When someone suggests something and someone else cuts it down, it is often pride-induced, but the best way to solve difficult issues is to make the issue the enemy, and not one another. It is the problem that we must focus on and not the person behind the possible solution or the one who made a suggestion. It can get so tense at some meetings that some people are even afraid to say anything, but if someone’s afraid to speak up because they fear they’ll be scorned, then many great ideas will never be heard. It is the suggestions or ideas that should be addressed, not the person who made them.

Commands for Peace

We want to be at peace with everyone, don’t we? Especially those of the household of God, and we have plenty of admonition to do that. The Apostle Paul wrote that we should “Aim for restoration, comfort one another, agree with one another, live in peace; and the God of love and peace will be with you” (2 Cor 13:11), and “If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all” (Rom 12:18). It may not always be possible, but we should still “pursue what makes for peace and for mutual upbuilding” (Rom 14:19), however a peacemaker must first experience the peace of God which surpasses all understanding (Phil 4:7), especially surpassing the understanding of the world. A person should be at peace with God before they can make peace among others (Rom 5:1), so we should “practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you” (Phil 4:9).

God’s Children

If we think about it this way, we can say we love God, but if we treat our brothers and sisters in less than loving ways, like at board meetings, we are not showing God love. I am a father and grandfather, and many people I know say they love me, but if they said, “Jack, I love you, but I can’t stand to be around your children,” I’d take offense to that. You can say you love me, but it doesn’t mean as much to me if you don’t love my children. Now, God loves His children, and if we treat them in ways contrary to biblical love, we are not regarding God’s gracious gift of grace to us. All we deserved was the wrath of God, but God sent His own Son to die for our sins and to reconcile us back to God. Now that we’re at peace with God, how can we not be at peace with His children!? They are our family, so it’s best we remember that by our words, Jesus said, we will be justified or condemned. Words can hurt. James calls the tongue a fire that can set a whole forest ablaze (James 3:5), but the tongue can also bring healing, comfort, unity, and yes, peace. The truth is, our words snitch on us and tell others what’s really in our hearts. As Jesus said, “The good person out of the good treasure of his heart produces good, and the evil person out of his evil treasure produces evil, for out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks” (Luke 6:45). You can be a peacemaker by watching what you say. Same goes for me! Words can cut or they can heal. They can incite to anger or they can turn away wrath. We have a choice in this. Let’s choose the way of peace, even if the world doesn’t know that way.

Conclusion

The way of peace is not in the world, so we can never find peace in this world. Peace only comes through a saving relationship with Jesus Christ. We must put our trust in Him and yield to God’s Spirit. If we are yielded to God’s Spirit, we’ll naturally not do or say things that will hurt others. The Apostle Paul was somewhat disgusted by the Corinthian church, telling them, “To have lawsuits at all with one another is already a defeat for you. Why not rather suffer wrong? Why not rather be defrauded” (1 Cor 6:7)? It’s better to suffer wrong than stir up anger…even if it’s at your own expense. I think that’s what Paul was saying. He was trying to be a peacemaker, and that’s what we must do. It starts with the gospel of peace (Eph 6:15), so let’s you and I “be imitators of God, as beloved children. And walk in love, as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us, a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God” (Eph 5:1-2).

Here is some related reading for you: Bible Verses About Peace: 20 Great Scripture Quotes

Resource – Scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version® (ESV®), Crossway Bibles. (2007). ESV: Study Bible : English standard version. Wheaton, Ill: Crossway Bibles. Used by permission. All rights reserved.



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