Summary: Whenever you see a pageant and you hear the question, ‘what is the most important thing society needs’, the contestant will typically answer, ‘world peace’. Everybody wants peace but there seems to be so little of it. Why? I believe Jesus has the answer.
MY PEACE I GIVE TO YOU
INTRODUCTION: Whenever you watch some beauty pageant and you hear the question, ‘what is the most important thing society needs’, the contestant will typically answer, ‘world peace’. Peace…everybody wants it but there seems to be so little of it. What gives? I believe Jesus has an answer for us. Let’s take a look at the peace of Jesus.
1) My peace I give to you.
John 14:27, “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.”
‘My peace’. What peace did Jesus have? Perfect peace. Look at the life of Jesus and you will see that perfect peace displayed. When he and the disciples were in the boat and the storm was raging he was asleep on a cushion. He wasn’t freaking out like the disciples were-he was at peace. When the religious leaders were being contentious with him he didn’t start flipping out-he maintained his control-he was at peace. When he was being arrested-at peace. When he was being falsely accused-at peace. When he was being stripped, beaten and nailed to the cross-at peace.
How? He had a close connection with his Father and he never took his focus off him. He knew there was no reason to doubt. He knew there was nothing to fear. The perfect peace that Jesus has he wants to give to us.
“I do not give to you as the world gives.” The biggest contrast between the world’s peace and the peace Jesus gives is the world cannot bring peace between man and God, but Jesus can…and did. He is called the prince of peace for he came to bring peace between man and God through his sacrifice on the cross.
Rom. 5:1, “Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.”
There was a time when we weren’t at peace with God. Colossians 1 says that we were once alienated from God and enemies of God because of our evil behavior. But now, because Jesus shed his blood and died on the cross for our sins we have been reconciled to God; thus making peace between us and God. I cannot truly be at peace unless I am first at peace with God. This is why the peace that the world gives is imperfect.
Another difference between worldly peace and heavenly peace is worldly peace is temporary and unstable while heavenly peace is permanent and secure. That’s because worldly peace is outward while heavenly peace is inward. Worldly peace is conditional. As long as things are going well, I will be at peace. But, if there is a wrench thrown in the system then I will not be at peace. As long as you stay peaceful with me I will be at peace. But, when that changes then my state of peace will quickly come to an end.
However, the peace that Jesus gives, the peace that is established through being at peace with God is not temporary or conditional-it is continual-despite the circumstances I’m in or the people I’m around. Not that we purposely put ourselves in chaotic circumstances or surround ourselves with irate people but when we find ourselves dealing with such we can still be at peace.
Phil. 4:4-7, “Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
Rejoice in the Lord always-even when you don’t feel like it. We don’t rejoice because of all things but we rejoice in all things. Everything isn’t peaceful, but we can still be at peace. The ability to be at peace in trying times can only come from God. That level of peace surpasses all understanding; it’s not normal. “How can you be at peace in a time like this?” “Instead of having anxiety I’m relying on God. Instead of getting all upset I’ve decided to trust God.”
Isa. 26:3, “You will keep in perfect peace him whose mind is steadfast, because he trusts in you.”? When we trust in God and keep our minds focused on him we will we have that perfect peace. To be steadfast means to be firm and unwavering. When situations come that test our trust in God Satan’s goal is to cause us to falter in our faith. When we start having trust issues with God we can be sure we will not be at peace. If we allow our minds to get pulled off track we will be leaving the path of peace. Jesus said do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid. When my mind is fixed on him I won’t be troubled or afraid; I’ll be at peace.