Tag Archives: peacemakers

What in the World is a Peacemaker?

“Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God. (Matthew 5:9 NASB)

What in the world is a peacemaker? Jesus said that the peacemakers shall be called sons of God, and as the only begotten Son of God, and the Prince of Peace, He must have been a peacemaker, right? For the commands He gave to us, and the lessons He taught, He demonstrated in His own life. Let us therefore examine Jesus’ life and discover how we, too, can become sons of God.

Jesus was and is the Prince of Peace. Throughout the scriptures, we see that He repeatedly spoke of peace, and yet He had many enemies, who wanted nothing more than to destroy Him, from the time of His birth. So the peace He was speaking of, obviously had nothing to do with whether or not we have enemies.

Peace I leave with you; My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Do not let your heart be troubled, nor let it be fearful. (John 14:27 NASB)

Indeed, Jesus warned us in Matthew 10:34-42, that He didn’t come to bring peace on earth, but a sword. He said that He came to set families against one another. That doesn’t sound very peaceful, does it?

I remember when I was first saved as a child of around eleven or twelve years old. I was so excited, I couldn’t wait to get home and tell my parents the good news. I was sure they would be proud and happy for me. As soon as I jumped off the church bus, I hit the ground at a run, delighted to share the wonderful news of my salvation with my mommy and daddy.

Yet, their response to this good news wasn’t what I expected. Instead of rejoicing, they were angry at me and at the church bus captains that they sent me to church with every week. I was told that if I was going to turn into a holy roller, like my church bus leaders, I wouldn’t be allowed to go to church with them anymore, did I understand? I didn’t understand, but I promised to obey them. I couldn’t bear the thought of not being allowed to go to church anymore. So, I began to read my bible in secret, and I didn’t talk to them about my relationship with Jesus for many years.

I didn’t understand their reaction back then. I was heartbroken, and sure I had done something wrong. Maybe they reacted like that because I didn’t know enough to share the good news about Jesus. There was one thing I was certain of though. I knew that Jesus was and is the Son of God, and though it would have made my parents cringe, I knew that I wanted to be like my church bus captains, who loved the Lord and served Him so joyfully. They truly lived according to His ways, and I wanted to live like that too.

Beloved reader, my relationship with Jesus did not bring me peace with my family. It drove a wedge between us. There was much conflict between me and my parents throughout the years, and they often seemed to hate my faith.

34 “Don’t imagine that I came to bring peace to the earth! I came not to bring peace, but a sword.

35 ‘I have come to set a man against his father,
    a daughter against her mother,
and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law.
36     Your enemies will be right in your own household!’ (Matthew 10:34-36 NLT)

So, if Jesus, the Prince of Peace, the One who blessed the peacemakers and said that these would be called the sons of God, didn’t come to bring peace on earth, what kind of peace was He talking about? I know without doubt that Jesus walked the walk He proclaimed, so there must be an answer to this, right? Why did He come?

1 Therefore, since we have been made right in God’s sight by faith, we have peace with God because of what Jesus Christ our Lord has done for usBecause of our faith, Christ has brought us into this place of undeserved privilege where we now stand, and we confidently and joyfully look forward to sharing God’s glory.

We can rejoice, too, when we run into problems and trials, for we know that they help us develop endurance. And endurance develops strength of character, and character strengthens our confident hope of salvation.And this hope will not lead to disappointment. For we know how dearly God loves us, because He has given us the Holy Spirit to fill our hearts with His love.

When we were utterly helpless, Christ came at just the right time and died for us sinners. Now, most people would not be willing to die for an upright person, though someone might perhaps be willing to die for a person who is especially good. But God showed His great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners. And since we have been made right in God’s sight by the blood of Christ, He will certainly save us from God’s condemnation. 10 For since our friendship with God was restored by the death of his Son while we were still His enemies, we will certainly be saved through the life of His Son. 11 So now we can rejoice in our wonderful new relationship with God because our Lord Jesus Christ has made us friends of God. (Romans 5:1-11 NLT)

Beloved reader, rejoice with me, for the answer to our question is found in this scripture passage. Jesus didn’t come to bring peace on earth. He came to bring us peace with God! Do you want to be a son of God? Then work to bring others to peace with God. It is both as difficult and simple as that.

Don’t get it twisted. Even though you may be attacked at every side, and even though you are surrounded by enemies, our goal is not to be at peace with the world. Our goal is to love our enemies, even though it goes against everything we’ve been taught by the world, and seek to help them make peace with God. Keep your mind fixed on God, and don’t allow the troubles of this world to cause you to lose focus…

You will keep in perfect peace
   all who trust in You,
   all whose thoughts are fixed on You! (Isaiah 26:3 NLT)

Do you want to be called a son of God? Then beloved, stop seeking your peace in this world. True peace comes from knowing and loving God. True peacemakers share the peace that God has given them, with others. True peacemakers don’t lose focus of this goal…

Do you long for peace? Seek the Lord with all your heart. Trust in Him, and no matter what circumstances you find yourself in, don’t lose focus of the One who loves you with an everlasting love. While you may never have peace even in your own household, true peace comes from your relationship with God.

Always be full of joy in the Lord. I say it again—rejoice! Let everyone see that you are considerate in all you do. Remember, the Lord is coming soon.

Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.

And now, dear brothers and sisters, one final thing. Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise.Keep putting into practice all you learned and received from me—everything you heard from me and saw me doing. Then the God of peace will be with you. (Philippians 4:4-9 NLT)

© 2019
Cheryl A. Showers

Words of Jesus – Blessed Are the Peacemakers

“Blessed are the peacemakers, For they shall be called sons of God” (Matthew 5:9 NKJV)

Blessed are the peacemakers… What in the world is a peacemaker? When I think of a peacemaker, I think of the war protestors from the 1960’s… I think of John Lennon… I think of people compromising their values in order to “keep the peace”… I think of

Vietnam War protesters. 1967. Wichita, Kans - ...
Vietnam War protesters. 1967. Wichita, Kans – NARA – 283625 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

abused women trying to please their abusers, even agreeing with their abusers just to “keep the peace”…

I guess you could say I have a warped view of what a peacemaker is, so I decided to look at Jesus, because after all, He was the one who said, “Blessed are the peacemakers, For they shall be called sons of God” (Matthew 5:9 NKJV), and there is one thing I know about Jesus – everything He commanded us to do, He did too, as an example for us to follow. So, let’s look at the life Jesus led, and hopefully that will help me to settle this within my own heart, and maybe it will help you too. 🙂

First of all, one thing I know for sure is that Jesus never participated in anti-war protests. And let’s be really clear about it, there were plenty of others who were against the Roman government and Herod’s government. If you’ll recall, Barabbas, the one the Jews chose to set free instead of Jesus, was in prison for committing a murder during an insurrection (see Mark 15:7).  Both governments were full of corruption, but Jesus never even addressed that. In fact, He told His disciples to render unto Caesar what was Caesar’s. It would appear that Jesus was more interested in reconciling people toward God than in correcting social injustices. Jesus even said, “For even I, the Son of Man, came here not to be served but to serve others, and to give My life as a ransom for many” (Matthew 20:28 NLT). 

So, could it be that those churches that deal with social injustice rather than reconciling people to God have got it all wrong? Paul, one of the greatest apostles the world has known made it clear what his priorities were… “For I decided to concentrate only on Jesus Christ and His death on the cross. I came to you in weakness — timid and trembling. And my message and my preaching were very plain. I did not use wise and persuasive speeches, but the Holy Spirit was powerful among you. I did this so that you might trust the power of God rather than human wisdom” (1 Corinthians 2:2-5 NLT).

Another issue I have with peacemaking is the necessity for compromise. I am one of those people who sees things as either black or white, good or evil. There are no gray areas with me. This is the way God created me, and while I can compromise on things of little import, if I believe something is morally or ethically wrong, I CANNOT compromise.

My heart desperately desires to please the Lord – and if He has called me to be a peacemaker, then I want to be one… But how can I be a peacemaker if it means compromising my values in order to “keep the peace”?

Jesus Cleansing the Temple.

Again, I look to Jesus. What did He do? Did He compromise on important things in order to “keep the peace”? The first thought He brings to my spirit is when He visited the temple in Jerusalem and saw all of the money changers there.

Jesus made a whip from some ropes and chased them all out of the Temple. He drove out the sheep and oxen, scattered the money changers’ coins over the floor, and turned over their tables (John 2:15 NLT). Wow – I don’t see any compromise here. And He certainly didn’t endear Himself to the Jewish leaders. Actually, this is not at all what I picture a peacemaker doing – so could it be that my idea of a peacemaker is twisted?

And just take a few minutes to read the “woes” in Matthew 23. Jesus minced no words in this chapter as He confronted the scribes, Pharisees and teachers of the law with their sin. There was no compromise of His values as He spoke to them, and yet, as harsh as His words were, I have the feeling within my spirit that every word was spoken in love. Yes, there was anger at the sins they were committing in leading many astray, but overriding the anger was grief for the souls that were lost… He was speaking the truth in love…

And just look at Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane on the night of His arrest. When Judas came to betray Him, Jesus knew what was going on. Judas had given them a prearranged signal: “You will know which One to arrest when I go over and give Him the kiss of greeting.” So Judas came straight to Jesus. “Greetings, Teacher!” he exclaimed and gave Him the kiss. Jesus said, “My friend, go ahead and do what you have come for.” Then the others grabbed Jesus and arrested Him (Matthew 26:48-50 NLT). Is this what a peacemaker is? One who faces his/her betrayer and still calls him/her friend? Could it be that even then, in the midst of His own suffering and betrayal, Jesus was still concerned about reconciling his betrayer to God?

And look what happened when Peter cut Malchus ear off… Then Simon Peter drew a sword and slashed off the right ear of Malchus, the high priest’s servant. But Jesus said to Peter, “Put your sword back into its sheath. Shall I not drink from the cup the Father has given Me?” (John 18:10-11 NLT)… And one of them struck the servant of the high priest and cut off his right ear. But Jesus answered and said, “Permit even this.” And He touched his ear and healed him (Luke 22:50-51 NLT). With His enemies surrounding Him, Jesus did not compromise, even in the face of His own death.

So if I look at the life of Jesus for instruction on becoming a peacemaker, what do I learn?

http://www.flickr.com/photos/xalamay/3643494502/
photo credit: xalamay via photopin cc

  1. Peacemakers seek to reconcile people to God rather than correcting social injustice… could it be that social injustice can be corrected only if people are reconciled to God?
  2. Peacemakers serve others…
  3. Peacemakers do not compromise their integrity to “keep the peace,” even in the midst of danger… 
  4. Peacemakers love… their friends and family… their enemies… and yes, even their betrayers…
  5. Peacemakers boldly stand on the Word of God, and though it may offend others, they speak the truth in love, because reconciling people to God is a matter of life and death…

My Lord, help me to be a peacemaker, not according to the world’s view of peacemaking, but according to Your word. Let me have the honor of reconciling people to You, rather than merely seeking to correct social injustice. Give me the boldness to maintain the integrity of Your word, loving others as You love them, and always speaking the truth in love. And Father, let me be called a child of God because I am a peacemaker according to Your will. In Jesus’ name I pray, amen. 

“Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God” (Matthew 5:9 NKJV).

© 2012

Cheryl A. Showers