Beatitudes: Blessed Are the Peacemakers

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

The Greek word for “peacemakers” is εἰρηνοποιοί (eirenopoioi), which comes from the verb ποιέω (poiéo) that means “to make, do, construct, create,” so literally it means, “one who creates peace.” As God’s children, we are given the ability to make peace. Not world peace. What does Jesus say about peace? He says the peace He gives us comes not from this world (John 14:27). His peace enables us to not be troubled or afraid in spite of fear and tribulation. Consider the Christian martyr when he does not fear for his life when he’s going to be executed or imprisoned for his faith. The world says you ought to be troubled and afraid, yet because of our hope in Christ, our troubles and fears are nothing compared to the blessed eternity to come (Romans 8:18). Martyrdom is an extreme example, so what in your life causes you to be troubled or afraid? Are you trusting God with it? Are you praying about it? If not, it’s no wonder you’re troubled or afraid. It’s okay to be afraid, but what’s not okay is when we don’t trust God with our fear.

So, how do we create this God-given peace? Christ gives us the ability. If you’re not at peace, how can you manufacture it? Before we can approach the question of how we manufacture peace, we first have to come to peace ourselves, which, as we now know, comes from Christ. Consider Matthew 11:28-30, “Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.” Jesus doesn’t make the problem magically disappear or resolve on its own; He simply makes it easier and makes the burden light. Jesus carried the weight of the sins of the entire world. So He is more than capable of handling your stress, your loss, your depression, your anger, your addiction, your self-loathing, whatever the trouble may be. How He brings each of us into this peace is a unique process for each person for each type of situation we go through.

Now, as peacemakers, how do we manufacture peace? There are various ways. Paul gives us some good guidelines in Romans 12:9-21:

Let love be without hypocrisy. Abhor what is evil; cling to what is good. Be devoted to one another in brotherly love; give preference to one another in honour; not lagging behind in diligence, fervent in spirit, serving the Lord; rejoicing in hope, persevering in tribulation, devoted to prayer, contributing to the needs of the saints, practising hospitality. Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. Rejoice with those who rejoice, and weep with those who weep. Be of the same mind toward one another; do not be haughty in mind, but associate with the lowly. Do not be wise in your own estimation. Never pay back evil for evil to anyone. Respect what is right in the sight of all men. If possible, so far as it depends on you, be at peace with all men. Never take your own revenge, beloved, but leave room for the wrath of God, for it is written, “Vengeance is Mine, I will repay,” says the Lord. “But if your enemy is hungry, feed him, and if he is thirsty, give him a drink; for in doing so you will heap burning coals on his head.” Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.

That’s a lot to remember, and it may seem intimidating, but don’t look at it as a set of rules to keep. This is merely a guide in which God enables us to act toward our neighbour through the Holy Spirit. It is a good guide on how to manufacture peace in people’s lives.

Consider also the fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22-23). And even more, the rest of what Jesus says at the Sermon on the Mount in Matthew 5Of course, it is impossible to do all these things perfectly because we’re still sinners, but that’s not the point. The point is that Jesus enables us to manufacture His peace, and doing so in any number of these ways has the ability to draw people to the Father (see John 6:44). Again, don’t think of it as a rulebook, for we are no longer under law but grace (Romans 6:14). God is not a lawgiver to His people; rather, He is a grace giver, and He gives us the ability to extend His grace to other people through these means in order that they may know the Father.

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