The Rule of Peace
Read Colossians 3:15 (ESV)
And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful.
How would it impact the body of Christ if every believer allowed the peace of Christ to rule in their hearts?
What rules your heart? What guides your actions? When you are faced with a tough choice, how do you make a decision?
In today’s verse, Paul says that it is peace that should rule in our hearts. But what does he mean by that? And what is the peace of Christ?
The peace of Christ is two-fold. Because of the sacrifice of Jesus on the cross, the wrath of God towards us was satisfied. Earlier in Colossians, Paul wrote that we were formerly alienated from God and hostile towards Him. We were enemies of God until He reconciled us to Himself (Colossians 1:20-21). His blood brought us peace with God.
Because we are at peace with God, we can also experience peace from God. This is the feeling of inner rest and security. It is this peace that surpasses all understanding that guards your heart and mind (Philippians 4:6) This is peace that keeps calm. We know that nothing can separate us from His love (Romans 8:38-39) and He will take care of us (Philippians 4:19).
Which peace is supposed to rule in our hearts, peace with God or peace from God? Both.
Think of the peace of Christ as a judge making a ruling in court. The judge tries to make a ruling that best applies the law to the current situation thereby bringing justice and helping to keep the peace. In the same way, when we apply the rule of peace to our decision-making, we should ask ourselves: “Which option obeys the laws and commands of God?” Since we are at peace with God, we want to live in a way that maintains that peace. The option that is within the will of God and within His boundaries for our lives should always prevail.
A good judge also considers the well-being of others. How will their ruling impact the lives of others? Likewise, we apply the rule of Christ’s peace when we make decisions with the well-being of others in mind. Paul reminds us that we have been called to unity with our brothers and sisters in Christ. When we are making decisions we should ask ourselves: “Which option promotes oneness and peace among the body of Christ?” “Which option promotes the well-being of the most vulnerable among us?” The choice to look out for the well-being of others tends to come naturally to those who have the peace of God reigning in their hearts.
And finally, a thankful heart is a peaceful heart. Grateful hearts are generally content and not anxious. Hearts full of gratitude generally appreciate the people around them which promotes peace in their relationships. Thankfulness helps keep the peace.
Friends, when we let the peace of Christ rule, we experience peace both in our heart and minds and in our relationships with others. What’s ruling your heart? What changes could you make in order to be more at peace?
Jesus, thank You for Your sacrifice that brought me peace with God. It brings me so much security and assurance to know that I have been made right with You. Help me to let Your peace rule my heart and guide my decisions. May I be a peace-maker among Your body. Amen.
~ Pastor Nat Crawford
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