For the past days, we have been looking at 3 Marks Of A Christian. In the series, we have already looked at two marks–Heavenly Mindedness and A Christian Fights Sin. In this article, we will look at the final post: A Christian Has Peace With God.
In this series, our lessons have been taken from Colossians 3:1-17. When God calls the believer, he calls him to peace: “And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful” (v.15). The peace in reference can be looked at from two angles:
Peace with God
The bible tells us that by nature we are not at peace with God. In an unregenerate state, humankind has turned their back on God and has incurred the just condemnation of God. The unregenerate man declared war on God when Adam and Eve disobeyed Him, and that meant no peace for all mankind. But God in his kindness and mercy looked down on our situation, moved with compassion, He sent down his Son into the world.
Taking on the form of a man, He lived a perfect life which we could not live. He was crucified and was raised from the dead on the third day. In Christ’s death, God has announced that anyone who will cease from their rebellion and put their trust in Christ would be saved. Where previously, humankind was alienated from God, now through Christ, we have been offered reconciliation: “God…through Christ reconciled us to himself…”(2Corinthians 5:18). Anyone who will accept this hand of fellowship from God will experience peace with God. Peace from guilt and shame, peace from eternal condemnation that is coming on all sons of disobedience.
If you have no relationship with Christ, you have declared war on God and a rebel. But you cannot win a war against the one who created you. Today He offers you reconciliation. God is calling you to cease from your rebellion and lay down your arms and surrender that you may find peace with him.
He has set a date when he will bring all rebels to judgment, by then it will be too late to repent. Today if you hear his voice, do not harden your heart. Turn to Christ and be saved.
For you my Christian friend, Paul says we should let the peace of God rule our hearts to which we were called. Since we have been justified by faith we have peace with God through His Son Jesus Christ (Romans 5:1). We no longer walk in guilt and shame, our sins are forgiven and we must not live in condemnation. We approach God as a Father. We are no longer at enmity with Him. We enjoy God’s grace rather than his wrath.
This is where the believer’s assurance of salvation comes from. We know that if we died today, we will be with the Lord because our debt is paid for and there is no hostility between us and God:
There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus (Romans 8:1).
Peace in a Fallen World
The second aspect of the peace Paul talks about is peace in a fallen and broken world. During the final days of Jesus’ ministry on earth he started telling his disciples about his impending departure, although most of them didn’t get it at the time. He knew what was going to happen to them. How they will be persecuted, how the world will hate them because they were his followers.
Jesus told His disciples, “peace I live with you, my peace I give to you not as the world gives to you”. Clearly, there is a worldly kind of peace; but Jesus said His peace is unlike that of the world. The world tells us, “if you could get that job”, “if you could get the insurance” or if you could get married” then all your problems will go away and you will have peace. But the peace Jesus gives is one that says, I may not have all I want but Jesus has given me himself and he is all that I need. Is your life in turmoil? Is there uncertainty about the future? Is your marriage going through hard times? Is your job under threat?
Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:6-7). The believer is called to peace.
Unfortunately the life of many Christians is characterized by fear and anxiety about the future. When we live in a state of panic and anxiety we are telling the world that God is not able to take care of us, and that is a terrible witness. Rather, we should take everything to God in prayer and allow the peace of God to flood our heart.
Lay Hold On Christ’s Peace
The peace of God is not magic. Our worries and anxiety are not just whisked way. It takes work, an effort to calm our hearts through the word of God: “Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God”(v.16)
The peace of God comes about when we allow the word of God to dwell in our hearts. As we meditate on the promises of God, our hearts are filled with hope and peace in a turbulent world. There is hope for us in the gospel, though we have tribulations in the world our Savior has overcome the world. The promises of God are true and amen in Jesus Christ. Our knowledge of the word of God is key to our peace. As we meditate on God’s promises we are filled with peace and thanksgiving for what he did on the cross through Christ Jesus for us.
Finally Paul says, “And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him” (v.17) The life of the Christian is all about the glory of God. If your goal is not the glory of God, you’re on the wrong route because the target of the Christian life is so that God will be glorified.
Are you passionate about heaven or you are comfortable on this side of eternity. The writer of Hebrews tells us that the Father of the faith, Abraham was looking forward to the city whose builder is God. Are you? He was heavenly minded because he had treasure there. Is it possible that you’re not heavenly minded because you have no treasure there?
You are not a Christian if you love the world and it’s deceptive comforts. If you’re not fighting sin in your life daily, you cannot claim to be a Christian according to the bible. A Christian who is under constant anxiety and fear about the future, has not experience truly the peace of God. What do you see as you examine your life? Are you a Christian?