2007-02-16 - Peace with God
Proverbs 15:26, Those of the pure are pleasing to him.
Peace with God is certainly something we should all strive for. The thought of meeting a just and holy God, who our sin offends and who is all holy, is daunting. Certainly peace with God is something that is worth spending the effort to seek, aspire unto, and secure while we have breath. I would like to first glance at some of the effects of having peace with God and then quickly look into what often hinders us having that peace.
The first effect of having peace with God is joy. Joy and peace are often used together in God's Holy Word. They are friends. Who doesn't want joy? Who doesn't want to be happy? Sadly, we are all too prone to look for joy in all the wrong places. True joy is lasting joy. But even temporal joys can be real joys when they are under the umbrella of God's revealed truth. Temporal joys can be true joys and let us not forsake them. However, all too often we seek happiness and fulfillment in places that fall beyond or outside the lines of God's care and provision. This kind of joy is fleeting at best. It is joy that is sanctified in reconciliation with God through the blood of Jesus Christ that is of a lasting nature.
Peace with God also brings us holiness. We can't have peace with a holy God if we are not holy or striving unto holiness. Having peace with God will change our desires so that we don't wish to sin, and are careful to seek not to lose that peace by falling into sin. We are guarded and fortified against sin when we live at peace with God. As we grow in the fruits of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22-26), we seek to keep ourselves in holiness by following the commandments and will of God. "Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the sinful nature with its passions and desires," Galatians 5:24.
There are other effects in having peace with God, but let us quickly look at the sad reality that some of us struggle with having and knowing this peace. Satan comes against us with all his weapons. His desire is to steal away our peace or unsettle what peace we do have. Let us remember that there is no real break in the peace that the Christian has with God in Christ. We may not always feel that we have this peace, but a renewed heart in Christ is at peace with God whether it is felt or not. If we are living in habitual sin and have peace of conscience, our conscience is either seared or dead. It is when we lose our sense peace, because of sin, that we show ourselves to be children of God. A renewed heart in Christ will feel sorrow for sin. A renewed heart will strive to regain the peace that is robbed by sin.
Lack of peace with God encumbers and impedes our ability to live up to our faith. Let us pursue gaining a full measure of this peace in our experience and conscience. The closer we live to the cross the deeper will be our peace.
Soli Deo Gloria,