God Offers Peace – Man Declares War

God Offers Peace – Man Declares War
Joe Terrell

“I am a man of peace; but when I speak, they are for war.” (Psalms 120:7)
We may judge our hearts, and judge them accurately by this Scripture. When the Lord Jesus came into this world, he came as a man of peace. Jesus Christ, “…came and gospel-preached peace to you who were far away [that is, the Gentile] and peace to those who were near [that is, the Jew].” (Ephesians 2:17) If one carefully reads the words of the Lord Jesus, he will discover that everything he said was designed to bring peace between God and men. Even as He rebuked, His aim was not so much to wound as to correct men and bring them to repent, that is, to stop their warfare against God, and be at peace with Him. But most would have none of His word.

His call for peace was answered by shouts of war. He stretched out His hands; they raised their fists. He claimed to be the Son of God, and men took up stones to stone Him. He said that none could come to Him unless God had given the grace to do so, and many of His disciples no longer followed Him. He declared that God was free to pass by one and save another, and they took Him to the brow of hill that they might throw Him over. He claimed to be their king, and they shouted, “Crucify Him!” Hear our Lord’s words as He echoes Psalm 120.7: O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you who kill the prophets and stone those sent to you, how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you were not willing. (Matthew 23:37)

As Christ goes forth in gospel preaching, the result is much the same as when He was on the earth so long ago: men gnash their teeth at the gospel of peace. How does this Man of Peace affect you? Do His claims enrage you or bring peace to your heart? Does the fact that Son of God has come threaten you or fill you with the hope of God’s salvation? Does the sovereignty of God’s grace offend your pride or stir hope in you that even such a one as you might be saved? Does Christ’s royal claim make you assert your right to choose and do as you wish, or does it make you bow before Him and find peace beneath the His scepter? Those who refuse the Man of Peace now shall find a Man of War in time to come. (Exodus 15.3; Isaiah 42.13; Revelation 19.11-16) “Kiss the Son, lest he be angry and you be destroyed in your way, for his wrath can flare up in a moment. Blessed are all who take refuge in him.” (Psalms 2:12)

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