Thursday, August 27, 2015

Jesus gave us His peace

A friend of mine made a plea on Facebook. She said she is sensitive to negativity, and she can hardly stand the awful news that has surfaced this summer. I know what she means. I quit reading the news a while ago and stuck to the headlines only, mostly on Drudge. A quick scan with eyes half closed through spread fingers like at a horror movie is still too much to bear.

She wrote:
stories of thieves, predators and murders. There is so much hate in the hearts of so many. I fear that many people can no longer see the beauty, love and compassion that is around us.
The sad fact is that she is right. Hate is building as apostasy grows. Hate is an outflow of the sinfulness of the earth that is rising to heaven. Worse, people refuse to see the beauty and compassion that is around us, the highest order of which is expressed in Jesus, then the hateful heart darkens even more.

There is not only the rising hate int he hearts of the lost, but rising hate in the heart of those who claim they are of Christ. (Matthew 24:12). This, too, is predicted.

In the Didache, an ancient writing, not inspired but important to church history, we read of the personal and national warning not to quench our lamps: (the emphasis is mine).
Watch for your life's sake. Let not your lamps be quenched, nor your loins unloosed; but be ready, for you know not the hour in which our Lord comes. But often shall you come together, seeking the things which are befitting to your souls: for the whole time of your faith will not profit you, if you be not made perfect in the last time. For in the last days false prophets and corrupters shall be multiplied, and the sheep shall be turned into wolves, and love shall be turned into hate; for when lawlessness increases, they shall hate and persecute and betray one another, and then shall appear the world-deceiver as the Son of God, and shall do signs and wonders, and the earth shall be delivered into his hands, and he shall do iniquitous things which have never yet come to pass since the beginning. Then shall the creation of men come into the fire of trial, and many shall be made to stumble and shall perish; but they that endure in their faith shall be saved from under the curse itself. (Didache , Didache)
That's the reality. The early church was well aware of how hard it was to live among hate. For most of the world except America, the life of the Christian has been one of targeted hate. Now it's our turn. We're dealing with it from even among the alleged brethren.

So, how do we stay sane, joyful, untouched by pollution of the world that has risen to our very noses? By staying in the word, by praising Jesus, by this:

Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. (Philippians 4:8)

You know when you're tired, you have coffee? (Or a sports drink?) When you're extra tired you have espresso (or Turbo Sports Drink). The tired Christian should drink the Drink the Living Water for energy. In these times,  friends, let's just cut to the highest, noblest, most joyful item to ponder: Our Savior. Think of Him, meditate on the word.

Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid. (John 14:27)

Pulpit commentary says of John 14:27,
Then follow the last words as of one who is about to go away, and says 'Good night,' or gives his blessing" (Luther). Peace I leave with (or, to) you. Peace answers to the shalom of ordinary converse and greeting, and signifies prosperity, health of soul, serenity, farewell. This is the sacred bestowment and Divine legacy of the Lord. "Peace" is always the result of equilibrated forces, the poise of antagonistic elements, held in check by one another. Of these the most placid lake, hidden in the hills and reflecting the sunshine and shadows, is a remarkable illustration. So the peace Christ leaves is power to hold the wildest fear in pause, to still a clamor or hush a cry

EPrata photo

2 comments :

  1. I so enjoy your blogspot Keep up the good work of Jesus spreading his precious word.

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    1. aw, thank you so much Hog Ron for the encouragement!

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