May 1, 2015
In the next couple of Coffee Breaks, as we continue with the
truths of Jesus' character expressed in the Sermon on the Mount, I'd like to
deal with something that some folks may consider as controversial and even
heretical -- and that is the ability we have IN CHRIST to literally change the
chaos and strife around us by the same simple declaration that Jesus used.
We are prone, even as Christians, to argue and even bring
division among folks rather than exercise this part of the nature of the Lord
Jesus Christ. The world often sees this more in a political realm than as a
spiritual characteristic. The problem is that it more often than not becomes an
effort to generate compromise -- sometimes at any price -- when the truth is
that true peace is a natural byproduct of the presence of the Lord, and His
Spirit being permitted to rule in and over the circumstances.
Let me show you what I mean. Consider Jesus' declaration:
Matthew 5:9: Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the
children of God.
again is a verse that we need to amplify in the same way that we have looked at
some of the previous verses.
“Blessed and highly favored by the King [of Kings] are those who
know what it means to have the peace of God — those who pursue with all
diligence that peace in their being and in their environment — for God will
cause them to be known and referred to as His mature and responsible sons (to
whom He has entrusted His business.” (RAC Translation and
come back to this verse in a bit, but I’d like to demonstrate exactly what I
believe Jesus is talking about by sharing an event that took place with my
father in the summer of 1956. Let me first say that to be a “peace-maker”
within the context of Jesus’ statement, we become an “enforcer” in a manner of
speaking. By that I mean that we bring and enact the peace of God where the
Enemy has disrupted things and brought confusion and discontent and conflict.
were living in Barrow, Alaska at the time, and construction of the new church
building there was proceeding in stages.
church had been built in close proximity to a couple of Eskimo homes — one of
which was occupied by a widowed woman named Susan (I’ll omit last names in this
instance) who had two daughters, Mary Ann and Margaret. Susan had taken up with
Simeon, and he was an alcoholic of the worst order. One morning, Mary Ann (who
was probably about 12 years old at the time) came running over to our place and
pounded on the door. Dad answered and Mary Ann screamed, “Simeon’s trying to
kill my mom!”
no time, Dad ran across the alley to the house and opened the door in time to
see Simeon, in a drunken rage, raising an axe over the head of Susan to take
her head off. Immediately, he raised his right hand in the air and spoke one
single word, “Peace!”
face and entire demeanor went through an instant change. He dropped the axe and
fell to his knees, crying. A very battered Susan had been cowering on the
floor, and she got to her feet and moved over to the nearby bed to sit down.
moments, Simeon had sobered up. A miracle had taken place as Dad led him to
began a process that would emerge in the coming days and weeks as the entire
family accepted Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. Mary Ann wound up spending
more and more time in our home as Mom ministered to her, and she ultimately
became our unofficially adopted “sister” — her sister, Margaret, as well,
although perhaps to a lesser degree.
was no mean musician and over the months that followed became a favorite banjo
picker who joined my brother and I, and a couple other Eskimo brothers in a
string praise band for our Sunday (and mid-week) services.
was a classic example of the rulership of God’s peace. The KJV uses the term,
“peace-maker” as a translation of the Greek word, eirenopoios, which
is a conjunction of two words, eirene (to join together, to set at
one again), and poieo (to make, to execute, to
perform, to ordain, to cause).
years ago, I put a couple of verses from Colossians 3:15-16 to music, like
Let the Word of Christ dwell in you richly
In all wisdom;
Teaching and admonishing one another
In Psalms and hymns and spiritual songs,
Singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord -
Let the Word of Christ dwell in you!
And let the Peace of God rule in your hearts
Rule in your hearts
Rule in your hearts
To the which also ye are called
In One Body
And be ye thankful!
(Repeat Verse 16)
word in the Greek text translated, “rule,” is the word, brabeuo. This word literally means: to
direct, to control, to decide, to determine, to rule.
is not a passive word by any means. It is active and it perfectly describes
just how we are expected to operate with the peace of God. The last two
descriptive meanings spell it out as clearly as anything can be. This is
rulership over chaos. It is the manifestation of His presence in the midst of
peace is NOT an absence of conflict but a serenity of spirit that literally
overtakes and overcomes the violence and confusion, the sin and iniquity and
darkness that pervades the earth and our societies at large. Neither is God's
peace an absence of war. God's peace is a declaration of war -- AND VICTORY --
over spiritual forces in opposition to His presence.
you ever considered how Paul begins virtually every single letter or epistle he
writes in the New Testament? Here’s how he begins his first letter to the
Ekklesia in Corinth:
Corinthians 1:3: Grace be unto you, and peace, from God our
Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ.
you see it? The peace of God is the same peace we have in Christ Jesus. It’s
that same peace that literally superintends our environment when we are in
Christ, and He is in us!
here, again, we have the same root word in Greek that we find in Matthew 5:9,
which is eirene (to join together, to set at
the same way that the word, brabeuo, denotes action or force or control, the
word, eirene, also denotes action — rulership over a negative situation. God’s
peace sets things right. It brings order in the midst of chaos, and that
applies in more than just mental, emotional, physical or spiritual situations.
share with you another story in next week's Coffee Break from my father’s
experiences that has been with me since my very early childhood, but let me
first lay a foundation for that story and show you a couple demonstrations from
4:35-41: And the same day, when the even was come, he saith unto them,
Let us pass over unto the other side. And when they had sent away the
multitude, they took him even as he was in the ship. And there were also with
him other little ships.
And there arose a great storm of wind, and the waves beat into
the ship, so that it was now full. And he was in the hinder part of the
ship, asleep on a pillow: and they awake him, and say unto him, Master, carest
thou not that we perish?
And he arose, and rebuked the wind, and said unto the sea, Peace,
be still. And the wind ceased, and there was a great calm. And he said unto
them, Why are ye so fearful? how is it that ye have no faith?
And they feared exceedingly, and said one to another, What
manner of man is this, that even the wind and the sea obey him?
you seeing this picture? When we talk about the peace of God that passes all
understanding, we are talking about a spiritual force which easily overrules
the elements, wind, rain, snow, hurricanes, tornadoes, blizzards -- you name
it. I can't tell you how many times Della and I have commanded storms to either
cease, stop in place, or steer another direction, and see the immediate
manifestation. That's a different story that I'll get to another time.
we see and consider the time when Jesus gathered His disciples together and
sent them forth to minister and extend the domain of the Kingdom of God in His
authority and power. This is peacemaking with some of its most visible and
19:7-15: And as ye go, preach, saying, The kingdom of heaven is at hand.
Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out devils: freely ye
have received, freely give.
Provide neither gold, nor silver, nor brass in your
purses, Nor scrip for your journey, neither two coats,
neither shoes, nor yet staves: for the workman is worthy of his meat.
And into whatsoever city or town ye shall enter, inquire who in
it is worthy; and there abide till ye go thence. And when ye come into an
house, salute it.
And if the house be worthy, let your peace come upon it: but if
it be not worthy, let your peace return to you. And whosoever shall not
receive you, nor hear your words, when ye depart out of that house or city,
shake off the dust of your feet.
Verily I say unto you, It shall be more tolerable for the land
of Sodom and Gomorrha in the day of judgment, than for that city.
illustration that comes from Jesus’ teaching is that when we go forth in His
Kingdom authority, we have command of environments; we have command over
spirits of confusion and contention. We have command over demonic spirits of
every characteristic and nature. We have command over sickness, infirmity,
disease and physical manifestations of weakness. Even more, we have command of
death with the ability to raise people from the dead and restore life to them.
must say, however, that there is a catch to this. This ability to command takes
place when we are in Christ, and He is in us.
this picture that Jesus describes, He declares that when we speak peace in a
situation where the household is anaxios (the same word that
appears in Paul’s description of our partaking of the Table of the Lord) —
treating the presence of the Lord as “commonplace” (unworthy, KJV), that peace
comes back to us, and judgment falls upon that place, not unlike that which
happened to Sodom and Gomorrah.
where we will take things next week.
I remind those of you
in need of ministry that our Healing Prayer Call takes place on Mondays at 7:00
PM Eastern (4:00 PM Pacific). Once again, the number to call for healing is
(805) 399-1000. Then enter the access code: 124763#.
At the same time, in
case you are missing out on real fellowship in an environment of Ekklesia, our
Sunday worship gatherings are available by conference call – usually at about
10:45AM Pacific. That conference number is (559) 726-1300, and the access code
is 308640#. We hope to make these gatherings available by Skype or Talk Fusion
Sunnyside, Washington 98944
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