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Where’s the Peace

Something to remember as we celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ is that He came to bring peace.

When the prophet Isaiah wrote of Him, he described Him as the “Prince of Peace” (Is.9:6). After the announcement of Christ’s birth was made, the heavenly host praised God saying, “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among men. . .” (Lk.2:14). Also, the hope of Christ’s kingdom is that the day will come when, “Nation will not lift up sword against nation, and never again will they learn war” (Is.2:4).

With the coming of Christ, peace should be a foremost desire for us, and what we strive for in the midst of conflict. The Bible tells us as much as it depends upon us, we are to “be at peace with all men” (Rom.12:18). It also says, “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called the sons of God” (Mt.5:9).

In light of the emphasis that the Bible puts on peace, it’s remarkable how many professing Christians are so quick to advocate war. Too often the knee-jerk reaction to some country that goes against our nation’s established policy is to want to “nuke ’em.” We’d rather send the military than missionaries to bring about change.

Of course, a nation has a right to defend itself. But let’s consider a few facts.

As a nation – at least publicly – we have abandoned God. His Word tells that if we forsake Him, He will forsake us (2 Chr.15:2). A nation forsaken by God is sure to find itself in more trouble, including war.

We need to realize, too, that war is profitable for some. One famous general said it plainly when he exclaimed, “War is a racket.” By this he meant that there are those who will have no remorse sending others to death in war if by it they can enrich themselves. The Bible confirms this when it observes that covetous desire is the root of war (Jas.4:1ff).

Also, we must acknowledge that we now live in a time when there is greater faith in the state than in God, and this has led us as a people to walk more according to the spirit of statism, nationalism, and militarism than the Spirit of Him who brings peace. This has led those in the military to serve more as killers for the state and its agenda, than defenders of the people.

The season of Advent is a fitting time to consider these points, because it is a time to prepare for the coming of the Prince of Peace. And come He will, both to judge and deliver. And when He does, He will consider what we have done to promote His peace.

How can we prepare for such a day? We can start by asking ourselves, “What do we want more, war or peace?” Or. “What holds our greatest devotion, a crumbling American Empire or the eternal kingdom of God?”

We’ll see more peace in our world when we put His kingdom above all others, and rely more on the sword of the Spirit than on bombs and guns.

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