4.3 In the End: God’s Peace – This Focused Center.

This is post #13 of a series entitled Peacemakers for the Cause of Christ – Facilitators of God’s Peace in a World Looking for Peace. We hope you’ll enjoy these 31 podcasts and blogs that focus on our great need in today’s society for peacemakers; men, women, and children who are willing to step away from all the contempt, division, and hatred, and step in toward the blessed call of being Christ-centered peacemakers for the greater glory of God. Here you’ll find very practical and biblically-sound advice on building bridges instead of walls, offering hope instead of despair. Here’s the homepage for the entire series.


Click on the link below to listen to the podcast version of this blog!

Truth #4:         Peacemakers Embrace the Biblical Power of Peace.

Today’s Lectio Divina: Our firm decision is to work from this focused center: One man died for everyone. That puts everyone in the same boat. He included everyone in His death so that everyone could also be included in His life, a resurrection life, a far better life than people ever lived on their own. Because of this decision we don’t evaluate people by what they have or how they look. We looked at the Messiah that way once and got it all wrong, as you know. We certainly don’t look at Him that way anymore. Now we look inside, and what we see is that anyone united with the Messiah gets a fresh start, is created new. The old life is gone; a new life burgeons! Look at it! All this comes from the God who settled the relationship between us and Him, and then called us to settle our relationships with each other. God put the world square with Himself through the Messiah, giving the world a fresh start by offering forgiveness of sins. God has given us the task of telling everyone what He is doing. We’re Christ’s representatives. God uses us to persuade men and women to drop their differences and enter into God’s work of making things right between them. We’re speaking for Christ Himself now: Become friends with God; He’s already a friend with you. How? you ask. In Christ. God put the wrong on Him who never did anything wrong, so we could be put right with God. 2nd Corinthians 5: 14-21 (MsgB)


Ever since the dawn of time, human beings have yearned for utopia. A time and place where everything is right with the world. We are at peace with ourselves and with others, wars end, striving ceases, and the cares of this world are swept away in a heavenly bliss that enfolds us all.

In 1939, as war was spreading across Europe, Harold Arlen and Yip Harburg teamed up to write this beautiful ballad that personifies our dreams of utopia.

Somewhere, over the rainbow, way up high,
There’s a land that I heard of once in a lullaby.
Somewhere, over the rainbow, skies are blue
And the dreams that you dare to dream really do come true.

Someday, I’ll wish upon a star,
And wake up where the clouds are far behind me.
Where troubles melt like lemon drops,
Away above the chimney tops,
That’s where you’ll find me.

Somewhere, over the rainbow, bluebirds fly
Birds fly over the rainbow,
Why then, oh, why can’t I?
If happy little bluebirds fly beyond the rainbow,
Why, oh, why can’t I?

(click here to listen to this song)

Many say that religion is simply yet another way for human beings to escape over the rainbow. But those who have studied world history and looked carefully at the words of the Bible, find an amazing accuracy in these ancient words. One scholar, C.S. Lewis, after a careful evaluation of all the Scriptures tell us, says this about the Gospel message of Jesus of Nazareth.

Christianity, if false, is of no importance, and if true, of infinite importance. The only thing it cannot be is moderately important.

So, for those of us who see the Bible’s message as infinitely important, we know that God’s Word has as much to say about the future as it does the past and present. And when it comes to the Hebrew and Greek words for peace (shalom and eirene), there is certainly a lot to ponder when it comes to the days still ahead of us. Glenn E. Schaefer, on the Bible Study Tools website, says this about peace and what’s yet to come…

In the age to come, the animal kingdom will be restored to its paradisiacal tranquility. The image (Isaiah 11: 6-11) is among the most picturesque in Scripture. Animals are paired off in a strange and wonderful way: the wolf and the lamb, the leopard with the kid, the calf with the lion, the cow with the bear, the lion with the ox. They shall be led by a little child. The emphasis is on the harmony, the shalom, between the animals and the animal kingdom with man. Children shall, in that day, be able to play with snakes and they will not be hurt. In addition, the curse of the ground will be removed and the land will again be characterized by shalom, which includes both harmony and productivity (Amos 9:13-15). The desert will become a fertile field (Isaiah 32:15), while the cultivated lands will drip with “new wine” and the “ravines of Judah will run with water” (Joel 3:18). The nations of the world will come under the dominion of the Prince of Peace and in so doing, “will beat their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning hooks” (Isaiah 2:4; Micah 4:3). Isaiah poetically characterizes it as a time when “You shall go out with joy and be led forth in peace; the mountains and hills will burst into song before you, and all the trees of the field will clap their hands” (Isaiah 55:12). One cannot overlook the fact that this harmony will never happen until man has a right relationship (shalom) with Yahweh; it will be the result of the righteous rule of the “shoot from the stump of Jesse” who has upon Him the Spirit of Yahweh; He is the “Prince of Peace” (Isaiah 9:6; Jeremiah 33:8-9).

So, as Christ-followers, awaiting this Day of Promise, this final in-breaking of God’s peace, it’s very clear from what we read in the New Testament, that we are not to stand here with our heads in the clouds, twiddling our thumbs until Jesus returns. If you recall, two angels came to Jesus’ gathered disciples outside Jerusalem in 33 A.D., inquiring why they were doing just that…

“Men of Galilee, why do you stand here looking into the sky? This same Jesus, who has been taken from you into heaven, will come back in the same way you have seen Him go into heaven.” Acts 1: 11 (NIV)

It’s obvious that these two visitors from above were sent to encourage our first-century brothers and sisters to put feet to the charge they had just heard from the Master…

“Do not leave Jerusalem, but wait for the gift my Father promised, which you have heard Me speak about. For John baptized with water, but in a few days you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit…You will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be My witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” Acts 1: 4-5, 8 (NIV)

In other words, get over My sudden departure (Jesus is saying) and start moving toward the work at hand. And, when Jesus’ farewell message gets combined with the letters to the early church, we find that the “work at hand” was spelled out pretty clearly here by Paul in today’s Lectio Divina from 2nd Corinthians.

“Work from this focused center” (Paul says)…

“Jesus died for everyone. That puts everyone in the same boat. He included everyone in His death so that everyone could also be included in His life, a resurrection life, a far better life than people ever lived on their own. Because of this decision we don’t evaluate people by what they have or how they look. We looked at the Messiah that way once and got it all wrong, as you know. We certainly don’t look at Him that way anymore. Now we look inside, and what we see is that anyone united with the Messiah gets a fresh start, is created new. The old life is gone; a new life burgeons! Look at it! All this comes from the God who settled the relationship between us and Him, and then called us to settle our relationships with each other.”

Based on the definitions we’ve found thus far in the Scriptures, I’d say the shalom and eirene of God has come. You and I have been reconciled into peace with God through the work of peace by the Prince of Peace. Paul continues…

“God put the world square with Himself through the Messiah, giving the world a fresh start by offering forgiveness of sins. God has given us the task of telling everyone what He is doing. We’re Christ’s representatives. God uses us to persuade men and women to drop their differences and enter into God’s work of making things right between them. We’re speaking for Christ Himself now: Become friends with God; He’s already a friend with you.”

Did you catch that? Christ’s ministry of peacemaking, or as it’s called in some translations here, the ministry of reconciliation, has been given to us.

“How? you ask.” (Paul explains) “In Christ. God put the wrong on Him who never did anything wrong, so we could be put right with God.”

Get it?

The inauguration of the utopia we all long for has now come. The peaceful place on the other side of the rainbow has now been brought here to planet Earth by Jesus of Nazareth. Now, until the day He returns, He’s commissioned all of us, His first followers, to take that same message of shalom and eirene out into a world where peace is not a very common thing. Rare, in fact.

Let’s pray.

My Prayer: Jesus, Your Word is clear. There is one work yet to be accomplished on planet Earth before You return. This focused center is to expand the peace of Christ to every last person who lives on this beautiful blue marble we call Earth. It’s Your desire that not one man, woman, or child will miss the opportunity to respond to Your invitation to “Come, follow Me.” Holy Spirit, indwell and empower me to embrace the biblical power of peace and go, in Your name, bearing witness to all these things. For Your Name’s sake. Amen.

A Few Questions to Ponder: In the last book of the Bible, it says…”And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Look! God’s dwelling place is now among the people, and He will dwell with them. They will be His people, and God Himself will be with them and be their God. He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.” Revelation 21: 3-4 (NIV)

Knowing that this is the ultimate plan of God, what might I do in my circle of influence, being a peacemaker for the cause of Christ today, bringing the presence of God’s shalom and eirene to those around me who are experiencing loneliness, separation, death, sadness, crying, or pain?

So, how are you experiencing God’s presence as you are becoming a peacemaker for the cause of Christ?


Peacemakers for the Cause of Christ – Facilitators of God’s Peace in a World Looking for Peace.

We hope you’ll enjoy these 31 podcasts and blogs that focus on our great need in today’s society for peacemakers; men, women, and children who are willing to step away from all the contempt, division, and hatred, and step in toward the blessed call of being Christ-centered peacemakers for the greater glory of God. Here’s the homepage for the entire series.

If you like what you’re reading, might we suggest you share this page with others!

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