June 9, 2022

This Is Why You Should Be A Peacemaker

Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called sons of God. Matthew 5:9

One of the lessons which we often learn too late is that it is not only hard to keep the peace but far more difficult to bring peace where there is none.  “Blessed are the peacemakers,” said Jesus, “for they will be called sons of God” (Matthew 5:9).

Have you discovered that it is far easier to make war than to make peace?  Strange, isn’t it?  There is something about our nature which makes us want to assert our rights and authority, to stand up for what we think should be ours, whether it is the territory of another’s nation or the toys that children share in a sandbox.  Those who hold to “the spark of divinity” in every person need to take a look at children playing in a school yard.  Their aggressive, sometimes hostile behavior makes me think that “the spark” came from the same one who tempted Eve in the Garden, rather than God whose basic nature is that of love and peace.

“What causes fights and quarrels among you?” asks James, the half-brother of Jesus Christ, who then answered his own question.  “Don’t they come from your desires that battle within you?” (James 4:1).

There are, however, those rare individuals who have the ability to bring hostile parties to the conference table, whether it be ministers of defense, employees who can’t work together, or husbands and wives who sleep in the same bed but no longer love each other.  Thank God for the peacemakers!

Surprising as this statement may appear at first, it is a fact that conflict does not destroy relationships, or send hostile armies against each other, or break up families leaving children bruised and hurting.  “OK,” you may be thinking, “If conflict doesn’t do it, then what does?” It is our refusal to resolve the conflict.

It is our stubborn refusal to bend, to see the other person’s point of view, to yield what we think is our just desserts. Yes, a battle of the wills. What’s the secret to conflict resolution, or is there one?  The mechanics of conflict resolution involve two rather simple ingredients, negotiation and compromise, but the extremely difficult part is getting people to understand the tremendous cost when we stubbornly refuse to resolve issues.

That’s the part that peacemakers play. Before you draw a line in the sand and prepare for battle–whether it is with your husband or son, your business competitor, or your worst enemy–think carefully of the consequences.  Is it worth it?  Ask any mother whose son comes home in a body bag, unrecognized apart from the name and number on his dog tags.  Ask any husband whose stupid refusal to harness his wandering lust results in losing his wife of 20 years, his respect, and his children.  “But I won!”  Did you really?   The fact is there are no winners, only losers.

“Son of God” is the title which Jesus gave to the one who is a peacemaker.  If a son reflects the image of His father, surely in this we see the nature and character of our Heavenly Father.  Not only is God described as “the God of peace” some five times in the New Testament, but it is His desire that His children be peacemakers as well. How say it better than the writer of Hebrews when he wrote, “May the God of peace, who through the blood of the eternal covenant brought back from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great Shepherd of the sheep, equip you with everything good for doing his will.” (Hebrews 13:20-21).

 

Resource reading: Luke 6:1-26.