In Part 3 (here are Parts 1 & 2) I talked about the Social aspects of the Biblical term peace. Now I’m diving into the Spiritual side of the term."Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called sons of God."– Matthew 5:9 (NIV)
From a spiritual understanding of peace, we are talking about peace between people and God. It is an absence of conflict with God that comes over a soul in a comforting way that can defy description. It is very much a vertical thing, God to man.
Here are some verses in the Bible that address this facet of peace:
Or else let them come to me for refuge; let them make peace with me, yes, let them make peace with me. (Isaiah 27:5)
But 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)
I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world. (John 16:33)
Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ (Romans 5:1)
It seems obvious then that when the Bible talks about peace the meaning for us should transcend far more than a reduction of interpersonal conflict. The Apostle Paul said the peace of God is far more wonderful than the human mind can understand. I figure that if a great theologian like Paul couldn’t find the right words to describe Biblical peace, than I should get cut a little slack if I fall short in my explanation!
Regardless of my inability to nail it down, it obviously is about something well beyond an absence of interpersonal conflict!
Next time I’ll take a look at what Biblical peace might look like in the real world.