He Is Our Peace

The fundamental blessing of salvation is peace. From it flows all God’s richer blessings of love, joy and glory. It is not only the foundation-stone of the Christian life, ‘the peace of God, which passes all understanding’ (Phil 4:7), but also the top stone, ‘the peace of God [which] rules in our hearts’ (Col. 3:15 KJV). But before we consider ‘the peace of God’ (Phil 4:7) we must consider the nature of ‘the God of peace’ (Phil 4:9) whose work in men’s hearts is to make peace – first his person, then his work.

God himself is the God of peace. He is at peace, in and with himself. A fundamental implication of the Holy Scripture is that the triune God was, is and ever shall be in perfect accord with himself, person with person, office with office, and that he is satisfied with himself in the fullness and perfection of his wisdom, love and power. When infinite intelligence finds infinite perfects in itself, infinite stability and integrity of character are assured. This integrity is simply another name for God’s righteousness, or rightness.

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We know that God is love. But his character is often expressed in the Scriptures in terms of righteousness (e.g. the theme of Romans). This righteousness is not mere rule, or form, but is of the essence of his being. Righteousness with God is not only a rule, but his life and his passion. He rejoices in it so much that he desires for his creates, and that, not only for its own sake as a seed, but for its fruit which is peace (Isa. 32:7; Heb. 12:11).

But we do not say that God is only righteousness. The Bible does not say that, but assumes that righteousness belongs o the divine heart as well as to the divine mind. Although in Exodus 20 we see the righteousness, holiness ad wrath of God at their sternest (God cannot look upon sin, Hab. 113; ‘the soul that sinneth, it shall die’, Ezek. 18:4 KJV), yet, wonder of wonders, embedded in the most alarming chapter of the Old Testament we find mercy and love. What a discovery this is! The God who gives the commandments is first of all the Saviour who has delivered his people from bondage (Exod. 20:1-2). The heart of God which burns with righteousness and holiness also burns with love and mercy, grace and forgiveness. He who is righteous, and desires righteousness for his children, makes them righteous by imputation and by impartation through his redeeming love. To our amazement we discover that the rock of his law and truth, which is so hard on the surface, is molten underneath with his love.

But, having ventured to consider the ‘God of peace’ with a view to considering the ‘peace of God,’ we unconsciously slip from the one to the other. This is not surprising, for what God is by the energies of his divine nature, he necessarily desires to impart to his creatures.

 

Excerpt William Still, “He is our Peace,” Towards Spiritual Maturity (Glasgow: Christian Focus, 2010), 11-14.