The God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet. -Romans 16:20
I’ve written about peace before, but there’s always more to learn. And I have been learning. The biggest news? Not only is peace God’s most frequent response to our prayers– it’s HIM! He IS peace! Gideon, the fearful but spirit-filled leader of a conquest for Israel, built an altar and named it The Lord is Peace (Judges 6:24). In a list of a few names that describe Him, we find Prince of Peace (Isaiah 9:6). The apostle Paul told the Ephesians, He Himself is our peace. (Ephesians 2:14) He also told the Corinthians, God is not a God of confusion but of peace. (1 Corinthians 14:33) And I keep this on my wall: You keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on you, because he trusts in you. (Isaiah 26:3) When I’m at a loss, when I don’t know how I’m going to make it, when I find myself falling, I think of Him– and I know I’ll be okay. That’s how I know He is peace. He wouldn’t pay the price that He did to leave me as I was! He was pierced for our transgressions, He was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon Him; and by His wounds we are healed. (Isaiah 53:5)
Peace is a lifestyle that comes from a relationship with Him that’s gone deep enough to dictate your actions. It’s made of purity, meekness, righteousness. It helps you do your part and allow others to do theirs. It trains you to have more open spiritual eyes. It makes your future brighter. It’s your substance. It binds together all you do, and helps you be closer to Him. It helps you to trust Him. It gives you joy. (Verses: Psalm 37:11, Psalm 37:37, Psalm 85:10, Proverbs 12:20, Isaiah 32:17, 1 Corinthians 9:14, Ephesians 4:1-3, Hebrews 12:11.)
Most of all, it teaches you to let your manner of life be worthy of the gospel. (Philippians 1:27) A life worthy of the gospel? That tells His story? That explains why He did what He did and how to know Him? I want a life like that! In order to get it, I need to let my love for Him leak out; I need to be so in love with Him that I do all I do out of that, just like He does for me. I need to let peace reign, because that lets HIM reign.
As a piece of armor, the readiness of the gospel of peace is a pair of shoes. Functions?
It keeps you from stumbling. Remember how we discovered peace comes from keeping our minds on Him? That’s also the key to keep us from stumbling. I don’t know what areas you struggle in, but I know it begins in your thoughts. I think things I shouldn’t daily! We’re all that way! Wouldn’t it be a relief to be free from that? Isn’t that what we long for? Think about Him and all He means to you. Great peace have those who love your law; nothing can make them stumble. (Psalm 119:165) That’s peace, and the greatest defense against falling. The peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 4:7) Also, keeping peace with others will make it easier for the gospel to stick with them.
- It takes you away from the war. Life is full of battles. We fight them every day, some harder than others, but sometimes there comes a point when you’re sure you can’t survive, can’t endure any longer. For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven:… a time for war, and a time for peace. (Ecclesiastes 3:1 & 8) That’s when Jesus gives you peace, so you can run from the war and the pain. He doesn’t let you encounter anything you can’t handle. When you just can’t fight anymore, He saves you; He shows you where to flee to. If you’re in a place like this, take heart: peace is coming soon, and you’re getting out of there. I will rejoice and be glad in your steadfast love, because you have seen my affliction; you have known the distress of my soul, and you have not delivered me into the hand of the enemy; you have set my feet in a broad place. (Psalm 31:7 & 8)
- It allows you to bring hope to others. How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him who brings good news, who publishes peace, who brings good news of happiness, who publishes salvation, who says to Zion, “Your God reigns.” (Isaiah 52:7) When you have peace, you don’t care so much about yourself and your problems, instead you’re more ready to share some love with others! Pray for peace and open doors, and sharing the gospel will become a much bigger part of your life. Especially if you let peace overtake you during a difficult time, people see that and are inspired; it makes them feel a little better and have a little more hope. Wearing peace is like wearing the gospel.
Always keep your shoes on, so you can be ready for anything. I’ll leave you some food for thought with this story Jesus told: Stay dressed for action and keep your lamps burning, and be like men who are waiting for their master to come home from the wedding feast, so that they may open the door to him at once when he comes and knocks. Blessed are those servants whom the master finds awake when he comes. Truly, I say to you, he will dress himself for service and have them recline at table, and he will come and serve them. If he comes in the second watch, or in the third, and finds them awake, blessed are those servants! But know this, that if the master of the house had known at what hour the thief was coming, he would not have left his house to be broken into. You also must be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect.(Luke 12:35-40)