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Peace on Earth?

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#1
Hashe

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As I was reading and thinking about the Christmas stories, I thought about the phrase, ‘peace on earth’. It makes me think of an old U2 song by that name. The song is a reflection on a bombing in Northern Ireland and how that relates to the idea of ‘Peace on earth’. The song asks, ‘So what’s it worth, this peace on earth?’

The last blog looked at the difference between saving from circumstances and saving from sin. The problem with the song’s premise is that it falls into the save from circumstances idea. The peace that was coming was not an absence of war. In fact, about 70 years after Jesus’ birth Jerusalem was flattened by the Romans in a terrible war against the Jews.

So what is meant by peace? In John’s gospel, in Jesus’ last talks before he goes to the Christ, he discusses peace a couple of time. In John 14:27, he says he leaves his peace, which is not what the world calls peace, but a peaceful heart. Later in John 16:33 Jesus contrasts between his peace and the troubles people will have in the world. Their circumstances won’t be peaceful but their hearts will.

Perhaps the best example of this is Job. In the book of Job, Job losses everything – his wealth, his family and then finally his health. Understandable he gets angry with God. He wants to have it out with God and much of the book is Job and his friends discussing whether or not Job deserved what happened to him.

Then God shows up. God doesn’t answer any of Job’s questions. Rather he speaks of his own character. The encounter with God settles Job’s heart. He now has peace. At first his circumstances don’t change, but his heart has.

What does it mean that Jesus saves us from our sins? One simple way of understanding it is that it means that we can have that encounter with God and settle our hearts.



#2
EnochBethany

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Was there not this pax romana during the life of Christ?

Peace on Earth, but not guaranteed once Christ was crucified.

 

What does it mean to be saved from sins?

 

Romans 6 addresses that issue.

Romans 7 addresses the limitations on that salvation in this life.

Romans 8 assures us of the final salvation.

 

Salvation begins with a drastic transformation, new birth, metamorphosis from sinner to child of God, which happens to include eternal life.  But this life will have a struggle vs sin in our lives.  Sin still dwells in our flesh (Old Man, Old human nature).



#3
Hashe

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Was there not this pax romana during the life of Christ?

 

How peaceful was the pax romana for the Jews? Why was Herod removed as King of Jerusalem? Was it because it was peaceful in Jerusalem? Or because there were riots and troubles?

What does Gamaliel say about the times in Acts 5:34ff? People rising up and being killed .... does that sound like peace?



#4
FresnoJoe

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As I was reading and thinking about the Christmas stories, I thought about the phrase, ‘peace on earth’.

 

:thumbsup:

 

The

 

“Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among those with whom he is pleased!” Luke 2:14 (ESV)

 

Peace

 

But now the righteousness of God has been manifested apart from the law, although the Law and the Prophets bear witness to it—

 

the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all who believe. For there is no distinction:

 

for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 

 

and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus,

 

whom God put forward as a propitiation by his blood, to be received by faith.

 

This was to show God’s righteousness, because in his divine forbearance he had passed over former sins.

 

It was to show his righteousness at the present time, so that he might be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus. Romans 3:21-26 (ESV)



#5
EnochBethany

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Was there not this pax romana during the life of Christ?

 

How peaceful was the pax romana for the Jews? Why was Herod removed as King of Jerusalem? Was it because it was peaceful in Jerusalem? Or because there were riots and troubles?

What does Gamaliel say about the times in Acts 5:34ff? People rising up and being killed .... does that sound like peace?

 

"How peaceful" you ask.  Good point.  Peace is not a binary (either peace or non-peace); it could be rated on a scale of 0-10; and peace requires that the cops disturb the peace of criminals!  How about relative peace, scale of 9 vis-a-vis the rest of history?



#6
Hashe

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The Roman empire was constantly under attack, because it was constantly expanding and shrinking as well as internal battles between generals. There was always war, and Palestine was not often far from wars.






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