Be Weird! Make Peace Not War!
Be-Attitudes Part 7
By: Rev. Joe Kramer
Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God.
-Matthew 5:9 (NKJV)
For those who are led by the Spirit of God are the children of God.
-Romans 8:14 (NIV)
For you are still carnal. For where there are envy, strife, and divisions among you, are you not carnal and behaving like mere men?
-1 Corinthians 3:3 (NKJV)
Here we talk about those who make peace. Far too often in our society (even churches) there are feuds. Humans seem to have the innate capacity for arguing with one another and holding grudges. Jesus addresses that here, but not in the way you may think.
A lot of people look at this verse and tend to think that Jesus is talking about making peace amongst nations in a formal way. But the original Greek language does not bear this out as the primary meaning. While stopping wars is not excluded in this verse, the primary focus of this verse is “reconciliation between persons and not primarily to cause wars to cease.”[i]
We should try to make peace with those we have been holding a grudge toward, those who maybe (at least in our minds) don’t deserve it. God commands us to make peace and commands us to forgive one another. In this beatitude Jesus touches on this thought but drives it home a little later in this same chapter, Matthew 5:23–24 (NKJV) reads as follows.
- (23) Therefore if you bring your gift to the altar, and there remember that your brother has something against you, (24) leave your gift there before the altar, and go your way. First be reconciled to your brother, and then come and offer your gift.
Making peace with one another (speaking to Christians here) is a priority in the Christian life. Paul states this truth in Corinthians (just as one example) that if envy, strife, and division still exist in our lives we are not walking in the Spirit of God and are actually walking in the way of sinful man; but if we attempt to make peace with Christian brothers and sisters then we are walking as God desires and doing this, because it so hard to do without God, shows that we are being led by the Holy Spirit. The end result of this shows that we are becoming like Christ and our witness can go out as a person who is different from the world. Oh that people would grab a hold of this! Grabbing a hold of this individually would eventually lead to local churches (as a whole) grabbing on to this truth and practicing it! If that happens then the witness of the churches would go forth and I believe we would see many come to a personal and saving relationship with Jesus Christ. Then the church would truly be called the children of God amongst the unregenerate.
How about you today? Have you really grabbed a hold of making peace? If not then ask God to help you to grasp it not only intellectually but way down in your inner being. Having this beatitude active in your life will cause revolution to happen in you. Living this out will cause many people to ask you why you are so different from everyone else in the world! What an amazing opportunity that would be to share Jesus with them. Will you ask God to really reveal this to you deep down today? The choice is yours.
- [i] Louw, J. P., & Nida, E. A. (1996). Vol. 1: Greek-English lexicon of the New Testament: Based on semantic domains (electronic ed. of the 2nd edition.) (502). New York: United Bible Societies.