Summary: Jesus brings us real peace.
THE PEACE THAT JESUS PROVIDES. One of the things that stands out to me from my seminary days is a lecture that one of my professors gave on the topic of the peace that Jesus has secured and gives to those whom He saves. Who knows where my notes are from that class but I do remember that this professor began the lecture by saying that the peace that Christ has secured and gives to those whom He saves is a THREE-FOLD IN NATURE. This really caught my attention because when I hear the word “peace” my mind simplifies the complex nature of the word to mean the absence of conflict. By definition, the word peace does mean ‘the absence of conflict.’ At that point and time in my walk with the Lord I understood the peace of Christ to be referring primarily to the perfect peace that we who have been saved would experience in heaven with Him. My concept of peace of Christ was limited to my future reality with Him. This professor, in his lecture about the three-fold nature of the peace Jesus gives to those whom He saves, opened up my eyes to the reality that the peace of Christ is not simply some futuristic concept describing the reality of our eternal destiny but is a present reality as Jesus transforms the chaotic hearts of chaotic people resulting in peaceful and peace-filled people of love, mercy and grace that reflect Him throughout the world. In this message entitled “Today, Peace is Here,” as we celebrate the birth of Jesus, the Prince of Peace, I want us to take a look at the three-fold nature of the peace that Jesus has secured and gives to His own that is a present reality for those who know Him. Today, peace is here!
PEACE WITH GOD
A Common Conviction. From the beginning of mankind’s history outside of the Garden of Eden, there has, is and will continue to exist within the heart and soul of all mankind the belief that there is something wrong between God and man. There is some sort of unrest and/or conflict between God as Creator and man as the created by and accountable to his/her Creator. The response to this belief has produced:
• Atheism. It has always intrigued me how determined the atheists are to adamantly fight against that which they do not believe to exist. The adamant fight against that which one believes does not exist is like the kid who grows out of the “imaginary friend” stage of life but still has the imaginary friend except for the atheist it is the “imaginary enemy” in their mind. The motivation for the perpetual opposition is because of the churning of the soul that exists because of the unrest/conflict that exists between God and man.
• Religion. Every world religion, outside of Christianity, is based upon one common principle…the desire to appease the god or gods of that particular religion. Religious activity and rituals are required in hopes that the unrest/conflict that exists between the god or gods may be overcome by their efforts.