It seems that the world is teetering on the brink of disaster, and it may be only the beginning.
I am old enough to remember having Civil Defense drills in our neighborhood so that we’d know what to do if a nuclear war broke out. I still remember doing the drills and hearing the sirens in our community when they went off. Many of us though, “Was this it or was this just a drill?” Even in elementary school I became quite familiar with the underneath portion of my desk. Later, they moved us out to the hallway, I suppose thinking we’d have a better chance for survival. We might not have said it out loud, but many wondered if we’d live into adulthood. The tension was sometimes palpable. You could almost cut it with a knife or even touch it. It was that tangible. We’d seen on TV what the nuclear bombs could do, and we thought, “Would holding your head between your legs and covering your head with your hands really help us survive? Those were dangerous times…and as it turned out, far more dangerous than we actually knew. For example, the Cuban Missile Crisis had us all on our seats for a time. There was every reason to believe we’d be the first ones to blink…but time proved we were wrong, and the crisis passed…but now, is it back? Or, is it more of an economic cold war, and not just with Russia, but with China (and others, like Mexico)? It seems that we’re on another teeter totter, and who knows which way it’s headed?
Peace with God
Isaiah wrote, “There is no peace,” says the LORD, “for the wicked” (Isaiah 44:22), but this is not just about pointing fingers because the Bible says that none are good, and to make sure there are no exceptions. To make sure of that, Paul says there is “not even one” (Rom 3:12). I can only point a finger at myself because I am also included in the “not even one,” but the difference is, a Christ-follower does not acquire their own righteousness, but the very righteousness of God found in Jesus Christ (2 Cor 5:21). We are not good, but we are made good in God’s sight by Jesus Christ’s life, death, and resurrection, but this does not deter from the fact that this is not our Father’s world. “There is no peace,” says my God, “for the wicked” (Isaiah 57:21), and “The way of peace they do not know, and there is no justice in their paths; they have made their roads crooked; no one who treads on them knows peace” (Isaiah 59:8).
Good and Evil
What people used to call good many years ago is now laughed to scorn, and what was once called bad many years ago is now esteemed to be good, and so as it was prophesied that evil would become good, and good would become evil in the eyes of the world. That doesn’t mean good becomes evil or evil becomes good, but things that we used to esteem as good are now looked down upon or even laughed at, however Isaiah pronounces a judgment (“woe”) upon those who call evil good and call good evil. Isaiah wrote, “Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness, who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter” (Isaiah 5:20). Relativism has gripped society and pragmatism rules the world. Now it is, “What works best for the most must be true, even if it hurts the few,” but as we know, what is often popular is not always right, just as what is right is not often popular.
You cannot have the peace of God until you are first at peace with God, and you can only be at peace with God if you make peace with God through Jesus Christ. For anyone who rejects Jesus Christ, there is no peace…at least between you and God, and if there is no peace established between you and God, it is because you have not repented and trusted in Christ. Jesus went back to the Father after His resurrection, but He left the disciples with something that would help them. He said, “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid” (John 14:27), and when the One Who rebuked the storms tells you, you don’t have to be afraid, you can believe it! The peace of God comes from God and not us, and this peace surpasses all human understanding (Phil 4:7). It’s hard to have peace when there is the threat of another potential cold war, and even worse, a growing threat of a trade war. These things only create more tension and apprehension for us, so it’s hard to have peace when many are walking on thin ice, at least financially. The more cracks you see, the more uncertain it looks, but this is not the view of most Christians. Their trust is in God and not in things. Contentment doesn’t rest on things but on a Person. If circumstances are allowed to regulate our peace, then we’ll never be at peace, and unlike the peace Jesus gives, that peace will not remain.
There is only one solution and it’s not human-centered. It will take a righteous King to rule over the earth before there is justice and equity and mercy. No more will there begging bread in the streets and God “will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away” (Rev 21:4). There will be little problem in having peace if there is no starvation, no sickness, no crying, no pain, no suffering, and no more death. At that time, peace will be like a river that flows out of the New Jerusalem and will sweep over the entire world. The Lord Jesus Christ will have made “all things new” as He promised in His Word (Rev 21:5). Only then will the world know peace and it is only because of the Prince of Peace.
Article by Jack Wellman