Summary: God's peace is relational, not circumstantial. It is active and not passive. The Lord actively dispenses peace to those who minds are stayed upon Him. So keep our focus on Him and keep on praying.
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.”
It is not the Lord’s will for us to be troubled and in fear. He wants to give us peace.
Peace is what everyone needs. On a personal level, we need peace in our hearts.
• We need peace at home, in our society, and even between nations.
• The recent clash over the ownership of a no-man island between two nations tells us how elusive peace can be.
The world sees peace as subjective – it’s more of an emotion, the feeling of tranquillity, a sense of serenity.
• It is often defined in the negative – it is the absence of trouble, when there is no conflict, in the absence of war.
• But the Bible puts it in the positive – it is found in Christ; it has to do with the presence of God; the power of God gives us peace. It is the promises of God that gives me peace.
Peace is the Fruit of the Spirit; it is a gift of God. Jesus owns it!
• The peace that the Bible talks about has to do with a PERSON; it is the peace of God. Jesus says MY peace.
• Nobody talks that way. Only the Son of God can. He is the Sovereign Lord who is in control. Peace is in His hands and He can dispense it.
• Therefore we have to view peace not just as an emotion or feeling, but the condition we are in. It is the state of being in Christ, in His presence.
Jesus says His peace is distinctively different from what we can find in this world.
• The peace of the world depends on our surroundings. God’s peace is anchored upon a RELATIONSHIP.
• We can have peace in Christ. We can have peace with God. We can know the peace of God, because we KNOW Him.
(A) God’s peace is RELATIONAL, not circumstantial.
Do you know God today? If you don’t, you can never experience true and lasting peace. If you do, you can, even in the midst of trouble and danger.
• It is the PERSON that gives you peace. We need Jesus.
• Isaiah prophesied him (early 700BC) as the “Prince of Peace” (Isa 9:6).
We can never have peace without Jesus.
• You can go to the most peaceful places on earth and seek serenity, but not peace.
• You can attend meditation classes every week to rest your body, but not find peace.
• Once you’re back in reality, you face the same stresses and the troubles of life.
Almost 9 years ago, I was taking a stroll at East Coast Park on my off day, with Siew Yee. The beach was calm, surrounding was serene, and the mood relaxing.
And then I received an SMS, telling me my sister had a likely miscarriage and that she was on the way to Camden Medical Centre for a confirmation test.
In an instant, my heart sank. Everything just disappeared – the sense of peace that comes from the calm sea, the breeze, and the quiet surroundings. Nothing matters anymore; nothing.
My heart was in turmoil, completely restless even in a most restful place. I just wanted to pray. I needed to pray. We scanned around for a proper place, a bench or something, a quiet place, so we can sit and pray. We prayed and prayed.
And then I took a cab straight away to the Medical Centre to join my sister. I dropped all the plans I have for the day. Nothing looked significant anymore.
Peace is not circumstantial. Don’t bank on your surroundings to give you peace.
• Even in the most restful place, you can be restless. In the most peaceful place, your heart can be in a wreck.
• What we need is JESUS. Turn to Jesus to find peace. It owns it! He has it at His disposal!
• It is the Lord’s desire to give us peace. Jesus wants to give you peace!
That the first words that Jesus said to His disciples after His death: “Peace be with you!” (John 20:19)
• They were confused and in fear, hiding behind locked doors (John 20:19), Jesus came and stood among them and said, "Peace be with you!"
• The sense of those words goes beyond just a casual greeting. Jesus was imparting to them the peace they badly needed.
• And the amazing thing is that His presence itself brings that peace. They saw Him and they felt comforted!