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Text Sermons : Greek Word Studies : Peace (1515) eirene

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Peace (1515)(eirene from verb eiro = to join or bind together that which has been separated) literally pictures the binding or joining together again of that which had been separated or divided and thus setting at one again, a meaning convey by the common expression of one “having it all together”. It follows that peace is the opposite of division or dissension. Peace as a state of concord and harmony is the opposite of war. Peace was used as a greeting or farewell corresponding to the Hebrew word shalom - "peace to you".

Eirene can convey the sense of an inner rest, well being and harmony. The ultimate peace is the state of reconciliation with God, effected by placing one's faith in the gospel. In eschatology, peace is prophesied to be an essential characteristic of the Messianic kingdom (Acts 10:36).

Peace is a condition of freedom from disturbance, whether outwardly, as of a nation from war or enemies or inwardly, as in the current context, within the soul. Peace implies health, well-being, and prosperity.

Eirene - 92x in 85v - Mt. 10:13, 34; Mk. 5:34; Lk. 1:79; 2:14, 29; 7:50; 8:48; 10:5, 6; 11:21; 12:51; 14:32; 19:38, 42; 24:36; Jn 14:27; 16:33; 20:19, 21, 26; Ac 7:26; 9:31; 10:36; 12:20; 15:33; 16:36; 24:2; Ro 1:7; 2:10; 3:17; 5:1; 8:6; 10:15; 14:17, 19; 15:13, 33; 16:20; 1Co 1:3; 7:15; 14:33; 16:11; 2Co 1:2; 13:11; Gal 1:3; 5:22; 6:16; Ep 1:2; 2:14, 15, 17; 4:3; 6:15, 23; Php 1:2; 4:7, 9; Col 1:2; 3:15; 1Th 1:1; 5:3, 23; 2Th 1:2; 3:16; 1Ti 1:2; 2Ti 1:2; 2:22; Titus 1:4; Philemon 1:3; He 7:2; 11:31; 12:14; 13:20; Jas 2:16; 3:18; 1Pe 1:2; 3:11; 5:14; 2Pe 1:2; 3:14; 2Jn 1:3; 3Jn 1:14; Jude 1:2; Re 1:4; 6:4. All uses are translated "peace" except one - "undisturbed".

Eirene - Some 192x in the non-apocryphal Septuagint (LXX) -Ge 15:15; 26:29; Ex 18:23; Lv. 26:6; Nu 6:26; 25:12; Dt 20:10; Jos. 9:15; Jdg. 4:17; 6:23, 24; 8:9; 11:13, 31; 18:6, 15; 19:20; 21:13; 1Sa 1:17; 7:14; 10:4; 16:4, 5; 20:7, 13, 21, 42; 25:5, 35; 29:7; 30:21; 2Sa 3:21, 22, 23; 8:10; 11:7; 15:9, 27; 17:3; 18:28, 29, 32; 19:24, 30; 1Ki 2:5,6, 13, 33; 4:20, 24; 5:12; 20:18; 22:17, 27, 28; 2Ki. 4:23, 26; 5:19, 22; 9:11, 17, 18, 19, 22, 31; 10:13; 20:19; 22:20; 1Chr 4:40; 12:17, 18; 18:10; 22:9; 2Chr. 15:5; 18:16, 26, 27; 19:1; 34:28; Ezra 4:7, 16, 17; 5:7; 9:12; Esther 3:13; 8:12; Job 11:18; Ps. 4:8; 14:3; 28:3; 29:11; 34:14; 35:27; 37:11; 38:3; 41:9; 55:18; 72:3, 7; 73:3; 76:2; 85:8, 10; 119:165; 120:6; 122:6, 7, 8, 125:5; 128:6; 147:14; Pr 3:2, 17, 23; 4:27; 12:20; 16:7; 17:1; Eccl 3:8; Song 8:10; Isa. 9:6, 7; 14:30; 26:3, 12; 27:5; 29:24; 32:4, 17, 18; 33:7; 39:8; 41:3; 45:7; 48:18; 52:7; 53:5; 54:10, 13; 57:2, 19; 59:8; 60:17; 66:12; Je 4:10; 6:14; 8:15; 12:5, 12; 14:13, 19; 15:5; 16:5; 23:17; 25:37; 28:9; 29:7, 11; 30:5; 33:6, 9; 34:5; 38:4; 43:12; La 3:17; Ezek 7:25; 13:10, 16; 34:25, 27, 29; 37:26; 38:8, 11, 14; 39:6, 26; Da 4:1; 6:25; 10:19; Mic 2:8; 3:5; 5:5; Nah 1:15; Hag 2:9; Zec 8:10, 12, 19; 9:10; Mal. 2:5, 6).

Here is the first use of eirene in the LXX...

Genesis 15:15 "And as for you, you shall go to your fathers in peace; you shall be buried at a good old age.

Eirene is the root the English "serene" (= clear and free of storms or unpleasant change, stressing an unclouded and lofty tranquility!) and "serenity".

I rest beneath the Almighty's shade,
My griefs expire, my troubles cease;
Thou, Lord, on whom my soul is stayed,
Wilt keep me still in perfect peace.
---Charles Wesley.

The picture of eirene is reflected in our modern expression "having it all together." Everything is in place and as it ought to be. When things are disjointed, there is lack of harmony and well being. When they are joined together, there is both. Thus Hamlet cried,

“The times are out of joint. O, cursed spite that I was ever born to set them right.”

John Eadie explains that...

Peace, is the Greek equivalent of the Hebrew Shalom—a term of familiar and beautiful significance. It includes every blessing—being and well-being. It was the formula of ordinary courtesy at meeting and parting. “Peace I leave with you,” said our Lord; but the term was no symbol of cold and formal politeness—“not as the world giveth, give I unto you.” (John 14:27). The word in this connection denotes that form of spiritual blessing which keeps the heart in a state of happy repose. It is therefore but another phase, or rather it is the result, of the previous charis...

A conscious possession of the divine favour (grace)
can alone create and sustain mental tranquility.

To use an impressive figure of Scripture, the unsanctified heart resembles “the troubled sea,” (Is 57:20KJV) in constant uproar and agitation—dark, muddy, and tempestuous; but the storm subsides, for a voice of power has cried, “Peace, be still,” and there is “a great calm” (Mk 4:39KJV, cp Mt 8:26KJV) -- the lowering clouds are dispelled, and the azure sky smiles on its own reflection in the bosom of the quiet and glassy deep. The favour of God and the felt enjoyment of it, the apostle (Ed: in the present context Peter) wishes to the (recipients of this letter). (A Commentary on the Greek text - Page 7)

Peace is the opposite of war or disturbance (), a term which accurate describes man's relationship with the Almighty prior to salvation

for if while we were enemies, we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son (Ro 5:10-note).

Comment: Since the beginning of recorded history, the entire world has been at peace less than eight percent of the time! In its study, the periodical discovered that of 3530 years of recorded history, only 286 years saw peace. Moreover, in excess of 8000 peace treaties were made--and broken.

If grace defines our "resources", peace is the conscious possession of those more than adequate resources.

Peace is defined by Cremer as

"a state of untroubled, undisturbed wellbeing.”

Peace contrasts with strife and thus denotes the absence or end of strife. Peace for a believer is not the absence of danger but is the presence of God (cp Psalm 27:1 - See Spurgeon's note). Peace is not a hallowed feeling that comes over us in church but is the supernatural fruit of a heart set deep in God and His trustworthy Word. And so peace is the conscious possession of adequate resources for God's Name is "I Am ____________." (Fill in the blank with your need... not your greed, but your need!) Peace rules your day when Christ (and His Word) rules your mind, because peace comes not from the absence of trouble, but from the presence of God.


I hear the words of love,
I gaze upon the blood,
I see the mighty sacrifice,
And I have peace with God.
Horatius Bonar
(Play Hymn)
Eirene includes both the concept of an agreement, pact, treaty or bond and of an attitude of rest or security.

Webster defines peace as a state of tranquility or quiet, freedom from disquieting or oppressive thoughts or emotions, harmony in personal relations, a pact or agreement to end hostilities between those who have been at war or in a state of enmity, state of repose in contrast with or following strife or turmoil.

Five great enemies to peace: greed, ambition, envy, anger and pride. - Petrarch

Hampton Keathley has an interesting discussion of various aspects of peace:

The Peace of Reconciliation, Peace with God - Peace with God refers to the peace of salvation wherein the barriers, like man’s sin and God’s holiness, which separate man from God are removed through faith in God’s gracious work in Christ. (Ep 2:14, 15-notes; Ro 5:1-note)

The Peace of Fellowship, the Peace of a Conscience Void of Offense - This is the personal peace which God gives to the individual through fellowship with the Lord, or through walking in concord with God with all known sin confessed and turned over to God’s grace. (1John 1:9; 3:21; 3:21; 1Ti 1:5; Acts 24:16; 2Ti 1:3-note)

The Peace of Assurance, the Peace of God - This is the peace or rest of soul that comes from being confident of God’s supply and that God is in control of all the affairs of life. This is the peace that settles our nerves, fills our minds, and allows us to relax even in the midst of the uproar around us. (Php 4:6, 7, 8, 9-notes; Ps119:165-note; Pr 3:13, 14, 15, 16, 17)

[Ed: Peace rules the day when Christ rules the mind.]

The Peace of Harmony, Peace with Others - This is the peace of unity and oneness in the body of Christ; oneness of mind and purpose (Ep 4:3-note; 1Th 5:13-note)

The Peace of State, Public Peace - This is the peace of righteous rule and comes through good rulers or governments acting in accord with the principles of the Word and through a strong nucleus of godly citizens who apply and live by the truth of Scripture (cf. the early chapters of Isaiah). (Ro 13:1, 2, 3, 4-notes)

Global or World Peace - This is the peace of a world without war and disharmony which can only occur with the return and reign of the Lord (cf. Re 20:4, 5, 6-notes). Until then, there will be wars and rumors of wars (Mt 24:1,2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15).

The Peace of Orderliness - This is the peace or tranquility that we experience when we do things decently and in order. (1Co 14:40)

The Peace of Blessing - The wish expressed to others in a greeting for spiritual and physical prosperity, security, and safety as seen in the expression, “Peace, friend” or “Shalom.”

Do you lack peace in some area of your life?

Do you have peace with God with Christ as your Savior?

Do you have the peace of God so you are resting in God’s supply?

Do you have the peace of fellowship with a conscience that is void of offense (void of known sins, sins that have not been confessed)?

Do you have peace in your home, with your fellow believers?

When we do not have peace, it is because somewhere we are not appropriating or resting in God’s grace.

Remember, peace does not mean the absence of pain or hurt. It means that in our pain our hurt, we have peace because we know the Lord and we know He is in control.

Again let’s remember Peter’s words, “but grow in the grace” and Paul’s words, “be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus. (2Pe 3:18-note)

We are never told to pursue happiness, but the author of Hebrews does tell us to pursue peace and warns us against the danger of coming short of God’s grace. (He 12:14, 15-note; 15) (see the complete article - Grace and Peace By: J. Hampton Keathley, III , Th.M)

Peace in the Hebrew mindset (especially as implied in the Hebrew word shalom - click discussion of "Jehovah Shalom" the LORD our Peace) implies health, wholeness, soundness, welfare, health, well-being, prosperity and peace as opposed to war. For example in the Greek translation of the Hebrew (Septuagint = Lxx) of (2 Ki 5:22) the phrase "All is well (shalom)" is translated by eirene. In (Jdg 18:15-note) we have the phrase "asked him of his welfare (shalom)" where "welfare" is translated by eirene.

Eirene is used in the famous Aaronic blessing

Jehovah lift up His countenance on you, and give you peace (shalom > eirene in Lxx). (Nu 6:26)

Peace floods the soul
when Christ rules the heart

Alexander Maclaren adds that...

Peace comes not from the absence of trouble, but from the presence of God. (Ed: In other words peace is not just a truth [which it is] but is ultimately a Person, Christ Jesus - [cp Jn 14:27, note especially the phrase "in Me" in Jn 16:33!, cp Ro 1:7-note, Ro 5:1-note])

Eirene not surprisingly is associated closely with the Messiah, the Source of all peace, the One Who is Himself Peace. In that sense, there will be no universal peace until the Prince of peace appears.

The psalmist prays...

May peace (shalom = eirene in Lxx) be within your walls, and prosperity within your palaces. (Ps 122:7- See Spurgeon's Note)

Comment: This is a most appropriate prayer for Jerusalem ["city of peace"], whose name means peace and is to be the future residence of the God of peace, the Messiah.

Isaiah prophesied of this future "Prince of Peace" declaring...

For a child will be born to us, a son will be given to us; And the government will rest on His shoulders; And His name will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace. (Isa 9:6)

Isaiah later prophesied that Messiah would become the substitutionary sacrifice so that men by faith in this "good news" could find eternal peace...

(The Messiah, the Lamb of God) "was pierced through (note how he speaks as if it had already happened!) for our transgressions. He was crushed for our iniquities. The chastening for our well-being (shalom = eirene in Lxx) fell upon Him ("the punishment that brought us peace" NIV) and by His scourging we are healed. (Isa 53:5)

The birth of the Prince of Peace, the Messiah, was announced by the angelic hosts...

"Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among men with whom He is pleased." (Lk 2:14)

Psalm118:26 (note) prophesied Messiah's triumphal entry into Jerusalem at the beginning of the week in which He was crucified. This psalm was quoted and sung as the Jewish pilgrims made their way into Jerusalem in Luke 19...

saying, "BLESSED IS THE KING WHO COMES IN THE NAME OF THE LORD; Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!" (Luke 19:38)

Although the Jews sang of their Messianic King, their actions showed that most rejected His rule in their lives and thus Jesus pronounced a judgment on the unbelieving Jews...

saying, "If you had known in this day, even you, the things which make for peace! But now they have been hidden from your eyes. (Lk 19:42)

Speaking to His disciples just before He went to the Cross, Jesus promised that they would have peace declaring...

Peace I leave with you; My peace I give to you; not as the world gives, do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, nor let it be fearful. (Jn 14:27).

These things (Jn 14-16) I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you have tribulation, but take courage; I have overcome the world. (Jn 16:33)

Comment: Peace that Jesus gives is not the absence of trouble, but is rather the confidence that He is always with us.

In Adam all men are dead in their trespasses and sins, hostile toward and at war with God so that our peace with Him is disturbed. Paul explained that

just as through one man sin entered into the world, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men, because all sinned (Ro 5:12-note)

For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ all shall be made alive. (1Co 15:22)

Isaiah put it bluntly...

"There is no peace (shalom) for the wicked," says the LORD. (Isaiah 48:22)

Matthew Henry rightly asked...

What peace can they have who are not at peace with God?

Spurgeon adds that...

A genuine Christian dreads sin. He will not say, “Is it not a little one?” for he knows that a little sin is like a small dose of a very potent poison. It is sufficient to destroy our peace and comfort....(Sin) injures your faith, destroys your enjoyment, withers up your peace, weakens you in prayer, and prevents your example being beneficial to others.

The Christian’s heart is like Noah’s dove. It flies over the wide waste, and cannot rest the sole of its foot until it comes back to Christ. He is the true Noah, who puts out his hand and takes in the weary, fluttering dove, and gives it rest. There is no peace the whole world over but with Christ.

D L Moody...

A great many people are trying to make peace, but that has already been done. God has not left it for us to do; all we have to do is to enter into it.

Spurgeon on Ezekiel 16:63KJV (pacified ~ peace-ified)

When I am peace-ified; when I am made peace toward thee. God thinks of nothing but peace toward his children. “Peace, peace,” says he. He is the God of peace (Php 4:9-note), the fruit of his Spirit is peace (Gal 5:22-note), the very name of his Son is peace (Is 9:6). The heaven to which he is bringing us is everlasting peace. And even now the peace of God which passeth all understanding keeps our hearts and minds through Jesus Christ (Php 4:7-note).

Paul summed up the state of all men in Adam writing...

AND THE PATH OF PEACE HAVE THEY NOT KNOWN." (Ro 3:17-note)

Paul then went on to explain the path of peace with God writing that all who believe in the gospel have...

"been justified by faith (and) have peace (eirene) with God through our Lord Jesus." Christ." (Ro 5:1-note)

having shod YOUR FEET WITH THE PREPARATION (foundation) OF THE GOSPEL OF PEACE (Ep 6:15-note)

In Colossians, Paul explained how this peace was made possible for all men (all of whom are born into Adam), writing that

it was the Father's good pleasure for all the fulness to dwell in Him (Christ), and through Him (Christ) to reconcile all things to Himself (God the Father), having made peace through the blood of His (Messiah's) cross... (Col 1:19, 20-note)

Wuest adds that...

by His (Messiah's) death, (Jesus) satisfied the just demands of the law which we broke, thus making it possible for a righteous and holy God to bestow mercy upon a believing sinner and do so without violating His justice. Our Lord thus bound together again the believing sinner and God (in an indissoluble, living union), thus making peace. There is therefore a state of untroubled, undisturbed wellbeing for the sinner who places his faith in the Saviour. The law of God has nothing against him, and he can look up into the Father’s face unafraid and unashamed. This is justifying peace." (Wuest, K. S. Wuest's Word Studies from the Greek New Testament: Eerdmans)

The peace Paul describes here is not a subjective, internal sense of calm and serenity, but an eternal, objective reality. So the first great result of justification is that the sinner’s war with God is ended forever, Paul explaining that

although you were formerly alienated and hostile in mind, engaged in evil deeds, yet He has now reconciled you in His fleshly body through death, in order to present you before Him holy and blameless and beyond reproach (Col 1:21-note).

Justification by faith brings reconciliation and restoration of peace with God just as Adam experienced in walking in the Garden with God before the Fall!

Here in first Peter, the peace that Peter is asking God to "multiply" refers to that subjective, internal sense of calm and serenity, the peace of God, for through their election, the sanctifying work of the Spirit and the sprinkling of the blood of Christ (and their justification by faith as described above by Paul) the born again readers have a permanent possession of peace with God. As Horatius Bonar said "I hear the words of love, I gaze upon the blood, I see the mighty sacrifice, And I have peace with God."

Wuest further explains that the peace of God which Peter prays for is

sanctifying peace, that state of untroubled, undisturbed tranquility and well being produced in the heart of the yielded saint by the Holy Spirit (Gal 5:22-note). We have this peace to the extent that we are yielded to the Spirit and are intelligently conscious of and dependent upon His ministry for us." (Wuest, K. S. Wuest's Word Studies from the Greek New Testament: Eerdmans)

Erwin Lutzer rightly says that...

Emotional peace and calm come after doing God’s will and not before.

Peace with God flows from purity of heart. This peace is inexplicable and undeniable as Spurgeon illustrates...

A martyr was fastened to the stake, and the sheriff who was to execute him expressed his sorrow that he should persevere in his opinions and compel him to set fire to the pile. The martyr answered, “Come and lay your hand on my heart, and see if it does not beat quietly.” His request was complied with, and he was found to be quite calm. “Now,” said he, “lay your hand on your own heart, and see if you are not more troubled than I am. Then go your way, and instead of pitying me, pity yourself.” (Comment: As an aside, any so-called "peace" that an unredeemed sinner "feels" is not from knowledge of his happiness ["depends on what happens"] but the ignorance of his danger.)

Spurgeon was right when he said that...

Awe of God’s Word is a main element in that love of God’s law which brings great peace...

I find myself frequently depressed—perhaps more so than any other person here. And I find no better cure for that depression than to trust in the Lord with all my heart, and seek to realize afresh the power of the peace-speaking blood of Jesus, and his infinite love in dying upon the cross to put away all my transgressions...

Beware of the peace which is drawn from the stagnant pool of superstition. It will carry death into your soul.

In Romans 8 Paul describes this peace associated with our daily sanctification, as believers, controlled by the Spirit, walk in the Spirit and habitually make choices that "hit God's mark" (sin being the missing of His mark which good and acceptable and perfect) and thus please God...

for the mind set on the flesh (the mind inherited from Adam which is controlled or dominated by the evil nature opposed to God) is death, but the mind set on (possessed by, controlled by, dominated by, yielded to) the Spirit is life and peace, ("if the Holy Spirit controls your mind, there is life and peace" NLT) (See notes Romans 8:6)

In his unveiling of the mystery of the Church Paul explains that

"now in Christ Jesus you who formerly were far off (Gentiles) have been brought near by the blood of Christ. For He Himself is our peace, Who made both groups (Jews and Gentiles) into one, and broke down the barrier of the dividing wall, by abolishing in His flesh the enmity, which is the Law of commandments contained in ordinances, that in Himself He might make the two into one new (qualitatively - one that never existed before) man, thus establishing peace, and might reconcile them both in one body (the church) to God through the cross, by it having put to death the enmity. And He came and preached peace to you who were far away (Gentiles) and peace to those who were near (Jews) for through Him we both have our access in one Spirit to the Father." (see notes Ep 2:13; 14; 15; 16; 17; 18)

Paul explains the nature of Messiah's Kingdom writing that...

the kingdom of God is not eating and drinking, but righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit. (See note Romans 14:17)

THE GOD
OF PEACE

Five times in the New Testament we encounter the beautiful name the God of Peace, the Source of true peace (which parallels the OT name Jehovah Shalom) -- (See Ro 15:33-note; Ro 16:20-note; Php 4:9-note; 1Th 5:23-note; He 13:20-note)


Like a River Glorious
play
Stayed upon Jehovah,
Hearts are fully blessed;
Finding, as He promised,
Perfect peace and rest.
--Frances Ridley Havergal
In 1555, Nicholas Ridley was burned at the stake because of his witness for Christ. On the night before Ridley's execution, his brother offered to remain with him in the prison chamber to be of assistance and comfort. Nicholas declined the offer and replied that he meant to go to bed and sleep as quietly as ever he did in his life. Because he knew the peace of God, he could rest in the strength of the everlasting arms of his Lord to meet his need. So can we!

The peace of God will keep us from sinning under our troubles and from sinking under them. - Matthew Henry

The peace of God is that eternal calm which lies far too deep in the praying, trusting soul to be reached by any external disturbances. (A. T. Pierson)

The Peace of God “is not a pretense of peace but a divine reality that the world can neither create nor destroy.” “If we lose inward peace, we lose more than a fortune can buy.” (C H Spurgeon)

Do you know the God of Peace as your Lord and Savior? If not consider reading Billy Graham's online book entitled how to have Peace With God.

See also James Hastings excellent 332 page book entitled The Christian doctrine of peace (1922)

Outside of Christ there is no peace
Only those in Christ know peace

Objectively saints in Christ Jesus are at peace with God (Ro 5:1-note). The war between the believer and God is over and the peace treaty was "signed" in blood, the precious blood of Christ. Because of this great transaction, believers can be at rest and secure in experience or practice as well as in position. Speaking of the experiential peace now available to all believers, Paul writes

Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, shall guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. (see note Philippians 4:7)

Paul prays for experiential peace (peace of sanctification, sanctifying peace, peace of God on a moment by moment basis) for the saints at Rome, asking

"the God of hope (to) fill you with all joy and peace in believing (i.e., peace experienced in the sphere of habitually believing and which [enabled by the Spirit] is demonstrated in one's obedient thoughts, words, and deeds), that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit." (see note Romans 15:13)

Paul intercedes on behalf of the believers at Thessalonica to experience God's peace associated with sanctification (peace of God)...

Now may the God of peace Himself sanctify you entirely; and may your spirit and soul and body be preserved complete, without blame at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. Faithful is He who calls you, and He also will bring it to pass. (see notes 1Thessalonians 5:23; 24)

Now may the Lord of peace Himself continually grant you peace in every circumstance. The Lord [be] with you all!" (2Th 3:16)

Comment: Have you ever prayed Pauline prayers like those above for other believers? If not why not? Remember that Paul never prayed for physical needs for believers but for the deeper needs of the soul and spirit. The church must return to these types of prayers and can do so in full confidence that God is "obligated" to answer them according to His good and acceptable and perfect will. Pray this prayer for your pastor, your elders, your church members, your family. It will take about 5 seconds to pray it each day for the next year or less than 30 minutes for the entire year! And of course pray it in faith with a pure heart and clean hands and not as a rote, mechanical act. God will answer it although you may not always see His answers. Walk by faith, not sight!

The peace Paul is praying for is not that resulting from cessation of tribulations and distresses, but is the calmness of heart that is independent of circumstances because it arises out of a belief that the sovereign God is with you and in control of the circumstances.

John Macarthur adds that

"At the individual level this (experiential) peace, unknown to the unsaved, secures composure in difficult trouble (cf. Jn 14:1), dissolves fear (Php 4:7-note) and rules in the hearts of God’s people to maintain harmony (Col 3:15-note). (MacArthur, J.: The MacArthur Study Bible Nashville: Word Pub)

The greatest reality of this peace will be in the messianic kingdom (Ezek 37:26; Hag. 2:9) when the Prince of peace, Who is the Lord of Peace and the God of Peace reigns in the City of Peace.

As noted above, peace flows out of grace and both together flow forth from God our Father and were made effective and attainable through the Lord Jesus Christ.

If we lose inward peace, we lose more than a fortune can buy. - C. H. Spurgeon

It is in the way of truth that real peace is found. - C. H. Spurgeon

We must not be so in love with the golden crown of peace as to pluck off the jewels of truth. - Thomas Watson

Peace is a free gift and flows from the pure mercy of God. - John Calvin

Few things more adorn and beautify a Christian profession than exercising and manifesting the spirit of peace. - A. W. Pink

Barclay explains that eirene or peace

"in contemporary colloquial Greek...had two interesting usages. It was used of the serenity which a county enjoyed under the just and beneficent government of a good emperor; and it was used of the good order of a town or village. Villages had an official who was called the superintendent of the village’s eirene, the keeper of the public peace. Usually in the New Testament eirene stands for the Hebrew shalom and means not just freedom from trouble but everything that makes for a man’s highest good. It is interesting to note that Chara (Grace) and Eirene (Peace ~ "Irene") both became very common Christian names in the Church." (Barclay, W: The Daily Study Bible Series, Rev. ed. Philadelphia: The Westminster Press)

Ray Ortlund encourages us to

Set no limits where God himself sets no limits. It is not possible to have too much grace and peace. We have not exhausted the possibilities. Most of us don’t even think in terms of the possibilities of what God can do for us. But the Word of God greets us here with this open-ended encouragement: “Grace and peace be yours in abundance! May they be multiplied to you!”

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A REAL LIFE ILLUSTRATION OF "PEACE" - Jim Walton was translating the NT for the Muinane people of La Sabana in the jungles of Colombia. But he was having trouble with the word peace. During this time, Fernando, the village chief, was promised a 20-minute plane ride to a location that would have taken him 3 days to travel by walking. The plane was delayed in arriving at La Sabana, so Fernando departed on foot. When the plane finally came, a runner took off to bring Fernando back. But by the time he had returned, the plane had left. Fernando was livid because of the mix-up. He went to Jim and launched into an angry tirade. Fortunately, Walton had taped the chief's diatribe. When he later translated it, he discovered that the chief kept repeating the phrase, "I don't have one heart." Jim asked other villagers what having "one heart" meant, and he found that it was like saying, "There is nothing between you and the other person." That, Walton realized, was just what he needed to translate the word peace. To have peace with God means that there is nothing--no sin, no guilt, no condemnation--that separates us. And that peace with God is possible only through Christ (Ro 5:1-note). Do you have "one heart" with God today?

Other Illustrations of the Peace of God...

(1) In 1555, Nicholas Ridley was martyred by burning at the stake because of his witness for Christ. On the night before Ridley’s execution, his brother offered to remain with him in the prison chamber to be of assistance and comfort. Nicholas declined the offer and replied that he meant to go to bed and sleep as quietly as ever he did in his life. Because he knew the PEACE OF GOD, he could rest in the strength of the everlasting arms of his Lord to meet his need. So can we!

(2) Horatio Spafford had just been ruined financially by the great Chicago Fire of October, 1871. Shortly thereafter, while crossing the Atlantic, all four of Spafford’s daughters died in a collision with another ship. Spafford’s wife Anna survived and sent him the now famous telegram, “Saved alone.” Several weeks later, as Spafford’s own ship passed near the spot where his daughters died, the Holy Spirit suddenly overwhelmed him with what can only be described as an inrush of SUPERNATURAL PEACE (the peace of God). With tears streaming down his face, he picked up a pen to record his feelings & from his heart filled with the peace of God flowed the timeless words that speak of that peace God provides even though our world is falling apart.

When peace, like a river, attendeth my way,
When sorrows like sea billows roll;
Whatever my lot, Thou has taught me to say,
It is well, it is well, with my soul.

Refrain
It is well, with my soul,
It is well, with my soul,
It is well, it is well, with my soul.
(Play Hymn)

(3) The Compass on a Steamboat - The compass on board an iron steamboat is placed aloft (at great height in the air), so that it may not be influenced by the metal of the ship. Though the compass is surrounded by that which would put it out of place, the needle faithfully adheres to the pole, because it is set above misleading influence. So it is with the child of God when the Lord has given him/her peace: he/she is lifted beyond the supremacy of his sorrowful surroundings, and his heart is delivered from its sad surroundings. (Spurgeon)

(4) When Australian pastor H. B. Macartney visited Hudson Taylor in China, he was amazed at the missionary's serenity in spite of his many burdens and busy schedule. Macartney finally mustered up the courage to say, "You are occupied with millions, I with tens. Your letters are pressingly important, mine of comparatively little value. Yet I am worried and distressed while you are always calm. Tell me, what makes the difference?" Taylor replied, "I could not possibly get through the work I have to do without the PEACE OF GOD which passes all understanding keeping my heart and mind." Macartney later wrote, "He was (abiding) in God all the time, and God was in him. It was the true abiding spoken of in John 15:5." Peace floods the soul when Christ rules the heart (Our Daily Bread)

(5) A contest was held in which artists were invited to paint a picture of PERFECT PEACE. The judges eventually narrowed the number of competitors to two. The first had created a scene of a quiet mountain lake. The second depicted a thundering waterfall with the branch of a birch tree bending over the foam. On the fork of that limb, wet with spray, a robin sat undisturbed on her nest. The first picture spoke of tranquility, but the second won the prize because it showed in dramatic detail that absolute calmness can be found in the midst of turbulent surroundings. Yes, it is easy to remain unruffled when everything is quiet and serene. But to rest while the storm is raging—that is "perfect peace." (Our Daily Bread)

(6) During World War II in London there was a blitz bombing at night. The people stayed each night in underground protection. But one Christian lady just stayed at home and slept through all the bombing. When asked about it, she said, “Well, my God neither slumbers nor sleeps, and there’s no need for both of us to stay awake!”

(7) One night an unexpected storm swept over a passenger ship sailing from England to New York, tossing the ship violently and awakening everyone on board, including the captain's eight-year-old daughter. "What's the matter?" the frightened child cried. After her mother explained about the storm, she asked, "Is Father on deck?" Assured that he was, the little girl snuggled back into her bed and in a few moments was sound asleep. Although the winds still blew and the waves still rolled, she had peace because her father was at the helm. Although the squalls of life strike us, we are assured of our Father's presence. He controls our lives and upholds us with His right hand. We may not dodge the storm, and the winds may still blow, but the Master of wind and wave is on board. And if we trust Him, He will either calm the waves or quiet our hearts. We need not nervously pace the deck if the Captain of our salvation is at the helm. Christ calls the restless ones to find their rest in Him. (Our Daily Bread)

(8) PEACE WITH GOD is “JUDICIAL” which means that for the believer the “war with God” is over forever. PEACE OF GOD is “EXPERIENTIAL” for it describes the believer’s day by day experience of peace which can be forfeited. This truth was tragically illustrated by the story of the post-WWII Japanese soldier who failed to experience peace, because he had not received news of the end of the war & as a result had hidden in the jungle, more than 20 years after peace had been declared between the United States and Japan.

(9) There is what is called "the cushion of the sea." Down beneath the surface that is agitated with storms, and driven about with winds, there is a part of the sea that is never stirred. When we dredge the bottom and bring up the remains of animal and vegetable life, we find that they give evidence of not having been disturbed in the least for hundreds and thousands of years. The peace of God is that eternal calm which, like the cushion of the sea, lies far too deep down to be reached by any external trouble and disturbance, and he who enters into the peace of God, and has the peace of God enter into him, becomes partaker of that undisturbed and undisturbable calm. (James Hastings, Editor - The Christian Doctrine of Peace)

(10) There is a story about a submarine that was being tested and as part of its test, it had to remain submerged beneath the surface for a long time. While the submarine was submerged, a powerful storm passed through the area, causing a great deal of damage. When the submarine returned to the harbor, the head of the team that was evaluating the submarine asked the captain, “How did that terrible storm affect you?” The captain looked at the man in surprise and exclaimed, “Storm? We didn’t even know there was one!” The reason for the captain’s surprise was that his submarine had been so far beneath the ocean’s surface that it reached this area known to sailors as “the cushion of the sea.” Although a storm’s high winds may whip the surface into huge waves, the waters in the “cushion” are not even stirred. So while vessels up above were being subjected to turmoil and damage, the submarine down below was not affected. It remained "at peace" so to speak safely set on the “cushion.” This illustration pictures the supernatural peace of God which guards the believer's heart, in response to thankful prayer (Php 4:6).

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J H Jowett Devotional
April The Eighth
MY INHERITANCE IN THE RISEN LORD
1Peter 1:1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9.

IN my risen Lord I am born into “a living hope,” a hope not only vital, but vitalizing, sending its mystic, vivifying influences through every highway and by-way of my soul.

In my risen Lord mine is “an inheritance incorruptible.” It is not exposed to the gnawing tooth of time. Moth and rust can not impair the treasure. It will not grow less as I grow old. Its glories are as invulnerable as my Lord.

In my risen Lord mine is “an inheritance ... undefiled.” There is no alloy in the fine gold. The King will give me of His best. “Bring forth the best robe, and put it on him.” The holiest ideal proclaims my possibility, and foretells my ultimate attainment. Heaven’s wine is not to be mixed with water. I am to awake “in His likeness.”

And mine is “an inheritance ... that fadeth not away.” It shall not be as the garlands offered by men—green to-day and to-morrow sere and yellow. “Its leaf also shall not wither.” It shall always retain its freshness, and shall offer me a continually fresh delight. And these are all mine in Him!

“Thou, O Christ, art all I want.”

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PEACE OF PARDON—Not a Mere Forgetfulness - I have spilled the ink over a bill and so have blotted it till it can hardly be read, but this is quite another thing from having the debt blotted out, for that cannot be till payment is made. So a man may blot his sins from his memory, and quiet his mind with false hopes, but the peace which this will bring him is widely different from that which arises from God's forgiveness of sin through the satisfaction which Jesus made in his atonement. Our blotting is one thing, God's blotting out is something far higher.— Spurgeon in Feathers for Arrows

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Augustine, after years of tossing to and fro, found peace with God by hearing a little child say, "Take up, and read." I suppose that the child was singing to itself, and hardly knew what it was saying as it repeated to itself the two words—"Tolle, lege; tolle, lege; tolle, lege." "Take up, and read." That voice struck the ear of the perplexed thinker as though it were the voice of God, and he took the Scripture, and read the Scripture, and no sooner had he read it than he found Christ. I would entreat each one of you to do this, in order that you may find rest for your soul. Believe what is revealed in Holy Scripture. — Barbed Arrows from the Quiver of C. H. Spurgeon

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Peace—uplifting. The compass on board an iron steam-vessel is placed aloft, so that it may not be so much influenced by the metal of the ship: though surrounded by that which would put it out of place, the needle faithfully adheres to the pole, because it is set above misleading influence. So with the child of God when the Lord has given him peace: he is lifted beyond the supremacy of his sorrowful surroundings, and his heart is delivered from its sad surroundings.— Barbed Arrows from the Quiver of C. H. Spurgeon






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