Knowing True Peace

26 Mar

Dove peace

As he approached Jerusalem and saw the city, he wept over it and said, “If you, even you, had only known on this day what would bring you peace – but now it is hidden from your eyes.” – Luke 19:41-42

I cannot imagine the range of emotions Jesus experienced as he rode the donkey into Jerusalem. As palm branches waved and hopeful followers threw their cloaks on the ground to acknowledge the great one who had performed so many miracles, Jesus wept. Amidst the significance of hearing himself recognized as King and Lord, he saw through to the motives and misplaced expectations of the admiring crowd to the lostness of his people.

Luke 19:38b has the crowd shouting, “Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!” But Jesus knows they are looking for peace in all the wrong places. He experienced emotional pain as he saw their focus on miracles and possibly political revolution to bring peace to Jerusalem.

But Christ’s message of peace was extremely personal. It would cost him everything, yet the people would not understand. Isaiah 53:5 foretells the anguish Jesus felt as he rode into his beloved city, “the punishment that brought us peace was upon him.”

The next verse in Isaiah is surely a picture of what Jesus saw as he looked over the crowd,

                We all, like sheep, have gone astray,

Each of us has turned to his own way

Our way of peace is so much different than his! We look for circumstantial peace, where our lives are insulated from discomfort, disappointment, dark nights of disquiet and pain. But his way of peace is situational, flooding over us as we realize he has rescued us. He is our peace.

“He himself is our peace, who has made us both one and has broken down in his flesh the dividing wall of hostility” (Eph. 2:14).

Jesus taught

“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives.” (John 14:27)

When we look to Christ alone for our peace, we experience eternal peace through a relationship with God. We can also experience temporal peace as we seek to develop a heavenly perspective, seeing that our “light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory.” (2 Cor. 4:17)

Peace to you as you reflect on the one who bore your sin and offers you peace.

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