Monday, January 10, 2011

LIVING ON THE MOUNTAIN: Who Is The Peacemaker?

Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called sons of God.

Peacemaker. According to the dictionary this word means "a person, group, or nation that tries to make peace, esp. by reconciling parties who disagree, quarrel, or fight."

The Hebrew word for peace is shalom. Shalom is used as a word of greeting or farewell.

According to Strong's Concordance 7965 Shalom also means completeness, wholeness, health, peace, welfare, safety soundness, tranquility, prosperity, perfectness, fullness, rest, harmony, the absence of agitation or discord. Shalom comes from the root verb shalom meaning to be complete, perfect and full. In modern Hebrew the obviously related word Shelem means to pay for, and Shulam means to be fully paid.

Peacekeeper. Searching the dictionary this word means "a person who maintains or restores peace and amity; mediator: Mother was the peacekeeper in our family or a soldier, military force, etc., deployed to maintain or restore peace: American marines sent abroad as peacekeepers.

One of the above is Biblical. Which is not?

Isaiah 9:6 answers this question. It states, "For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace." Still not sure? One of the names of God is Jehovah Shalom - which means Lord God Our Peace.

Only through Christ can peacemaking be a possibility.

A shalom maker is not: easy going, always tolerant, an appeaser or afraid of making waves.

A shalom maker is: quiet (James 1:19), honest, willing to risk pain, a fighter and full of character (James 3:17, Ephesians 4:3)

The politically correct world in which we live would not like to be reminded that merely "keeping the peace" does not bring about true change that God speaks of in His Word. As true believers in Christ, we must live in holiness actively pursuing peace in its fullness. We must be thoughtful but never impolite. The peacemaker listens and evaluates. He/she makes trouble to make peace. This process of true peace is only accomplished by again - - understanding who God is. And who He is not.

Consider Matthew 10:34. Possibly you are asking, "Where is the love?" That does not sound like peace to me! But this is God's Word and God in His Bible we see the threading interwoven just to make sure we "get it". Luke 12:49-53 and Luke 14:25-33 remove all doubt. God is not interested in His followers being merely "peacekeepers".

Who is the peacemaker? Only through Christ can peacemaking be a possibility. Apart from Christ we do nothing (John 15:5).

Next time we will take more time to take in the scene below. The ascent so far has challenged us with a bit of rocky terrain. I can't promise you it will be any easier but I can promise you the Truth!


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