Saturday, March 25, 2006

The Peacemakers - Part 1

"Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called sons of God."
– Matthew 5:9 (NIV)

The whole discussion about the Christian Peacemakers Teams has got me thinking about this verse from the Sermon on the Mount. I don’t really agree with how the CPT chooses to do what they do. And I’m not sure I even agree with most of their basic premises, although I can’t bring myself to point my finger at them and say, “You are wrong.”

Perhaps I’m wrong.

I decided I need to spend some time looking at my whole understanding of that verse above and what Jesus really meant when he said it.

Now I’m no theologian. I’m not even especially smart. But I do know how to read. And I think I can ask some decent questions.

Who was Jesus referring to when he spoke this particular beatitude?
What do peacemakers look like? What do they do?
What does it mean to be called a son of God?

The good news is we have a whole ton of resources available. Our church is in the middle of a series on the Be-Attitudes. So I am obviously looking forward to the week we are taught about the peacemakers.

John Piper is one of my favorite current heavy theological thinkers. He has an article on the subject, appropriately titled Blessed Are the Peacemakers, which I think I will read a few more times before I get started.

That should give me enough to get started on in amongst all the other life obligations I have…


Dan Trabue said...

As one coming from the anabaptist tradition (amish, mennonites) who have a special affinity for the beatitudes, I'd like to hear your thoughts on them as you go through your study.

For one quick point of view, many of us anabaptist-types tend to think that the church has strayed away from biblical orthodoxy. We have emphases (and spend great deals of money) on all manner of extrabiblical teaching - from gay marriage to abortion to wealth and poverty issues to peacemaking.

We think that Jesus' teachings in the beatitudes is a great reminder of the messages that are consistently there throughout the bible - concern for/siding with the poor; warnings about wealth and power; peacemaking, etc.

Look especially for "Third Way" messages (ie, don't fight when struck AND don't cower in fear BUT overcome evil with good instead...)

I like your blog here, Chris - and a great name (CREEations).

Chris Cree said...

As I like to say, even though I can solve most of the world's problems with a couple guys over coffee, I sure don't claim to have all the answers.

I always reserve the right to be wrong.