Men have sought for centuries to define peace, and it can be a difficult task. Some define peace as the absence of war, but it is more properly described as the presence of the Lord with one, whether war is present or not. Peace is a much discussed subject in the Bible, and it would be good for us to pause for a few moments from our daily pursuits and notice some of the biblical references concerning it.
The Psalmist wrote, “I will both lay me down in peace, and sleep: for thou, LORD, only makest me dwell in safety” (Psalm 4:8). For those who faithfully follow Him, peace is a constant companion, “Great peace have they which love thy law: and nothing shall offend them” (Psalm 119:165). This does not mean that those who faithfully follow Him will never see adversity, but that despite the adversity peace is within them, “Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee” (Isaiah 26:3). We determine, in large part, whether we walk in peace or not, as Paul wished for the Colossians, “let the peace of God rule in your hearts” (Colossians 3:15).
The Christian age, in which we now live, was spoken of in prophecy as a time of peace, “they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning hooks: nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more” (Isaiah 2:4). Again Isaiah wrote, “The wolf also shall dwell with the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the kid” (Isaiah 11:6). Paul said, “to be spiritually minded is life and peace” (Rom. 8:6). Those who are Christians, who have been justified by Christ, were said to “have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ” (Romans 5:1).
Christ knew the importance of peace, and He said, “Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid” (John 14:27). The peace which comes from above is a preserving peace. It will take us through the difficult periods of life and preserve us safely into the arms of the Lord, “And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:7). As the gallant warrior of the Lord surveys the carnage and destruction round about him, as he sees all of the lost souls thrust into eternity without hope, as he sees his words fall on deaf ears, and as he sees his deeds of godliness go unappreciated, and as he sees his efforts “fail,” he nevertheless takes with him the knowledge mat God is with him, and helping him, and is most pleased with him. This leads to the realization that in the last day, when the judge of all the earth shall give out the eternal sentences for all men, his efforts will not be forgotten (I Corinthians 15:58). As the grand announcement to the world declares, where Christ is, “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men” (Luke 2:14). You can make this peace yours by obeying the Lord and walking faith-fully in Him.
Are you a Christian? Have you heard and believed the Gospel (Hebrews 11:6, Romans 10:17); repented of sins (Acts 17:30-31, Luke 13:3); confessed Him before men (Matthew 10:32-33, Acts 8:37); and been immersed in water for the remission of sins (Acts 2:38; 22:16)? Are you being faithful in all things (Revelation 2:10)?