Welcome to this weeks blog and thanks for reading. This week we are going to continue with our series on the Beatitudes with the following verse:
Matthew 5:9 (NIV)
Blessed are the peacemakers,
for they will be called children of God.
The first part of this verse that I want to look at is the word 'peacemakers'. For us to fully understand this word we need to understand the Greek word for peacemaker, eirénopoios (i-ray-nop-oy-os'). This word can be translated as 'lover of peace', which shows us that being is peacemaker is not just about taking action but it's also about the condition of our hearts. We must long for and love peace and true peace can only come from God. We can often get hung up on the idea of being a peacemaker taking the form of mediating or standing between two conflicting parties, but this is only one way that the idea of being a peacemaker can be fulfilled. Another way that we can be peacemakers is by giving people the opportunity to reconcile with God, so that they might find true peace in Him, by preaching the gospel or through any other evangelistic method.
“It is the devil who is a troublemaker; it is God who loves reconciliation and who now through his children, as formerly through his only begotten Son, is bent on making peace.” (Stott)
This quote from Stott shows us that another way of being a peacemaker is to oppose the disruption that the devil tries to cause. In doing this, we again offer reconciliation with God on His behalf to those who need it.
The latter part of this verse goes on to say that peacemakers will become 'children of God'. The reward for being a peacemaker is that you are recognised as a child of God, a peacemaker shares God's passion and desire for peace and reconciliation. This doesn't mean that you will have an easier life, as the role of being a peacemaker is a difficult one. If we look at the life of Jesus, he was the greatest peacemaker that the world has ever seen, offering reconciliation between the people and God (and He still offers it now!), we can see that a life of a peacemaker is difficult, it has trials and that it is often riddled with persecution.
“Now therefore, although it be, for the most part, a thankless office (with men) to interpose, and to seek to take up strife, to piece those again that are gone aside and asunder… yet do it for God’s sake, and that ye may (as ye shall be after awhile) be called and counted, not meddler and busybodies, but sons of God.”
I really love this quote from Trapp, it surmises the concept that being a peacemaker has an eternal effect on us, but in our earthly lives it can often bring trials and tribulations.
I pray that we might strive to become peacemakers, to offer the reconciliation that God has afforded us to others and to carry a spirit of peace within our lives.