Many warriors feel that once they’ve entered the battle, they’ll never leave again. They may come home, but the war has come home with them, wreaking havoc not only inside them, but on their family and friends. They are warriors who can’t escape the war.
Others are preparing to go into battle to fight for peace but have never experienced true peace themselves.
Though it won’t necessarily make the battles go away immediately, real peace is found when we acknowledge Jesus as the King over all other kings. When we follow him and he brings us into his kingdom, that’s when we experience the only lasting peace that can be found in this world.
When God created the world, it was peaceful. There was harmony between humans, God and creation. But that went away when people decided to try ruling creation themselves. By doing this, they allowed sin and death to tear through creation, destroying that harmony.
They didn’t get the power they wanted and, in fact, today we’re still trying to gain control by lying and killing and hating and disrespecting and acting on whatever urges we may feel at any moment. God created an order that was good for the world, but it wasn’t enough for us.
God wanted that harmony back, so he devised a plan. He picked a group of people called Israel to bring his peace to the world. But they failed. They enjoyed peace for a while but when Israel ignored God for too long, he uprooted them from their home. Even when they returned, they still felt uprooted because evil kings ruled their land, making them feel like God wasn’t with them anymore. God’s people seemed unable to fulfill their calling to help heal the world.
Though these kings appeared to be their greatest enemy, what Israel didn’t understand was that the real enemies that needed to be destroyed were sin and death—the real powers behind these rulers. Only then would there be peace.
There was only one person who could do this: God. So he sent his son Jesus to rescue not only Israel, but the world. But he did this in an unexpected way. He allowed the foreign rulers to crucify him. His followers were bewildered because it looked like the enemy just won again. What kind of warrior loses his most important battle?
But Jesus didn’t come to conquer the evil rulers. He came to defeat the powers behind the rulers. And that’s what he did three days later when he rose from the grave. Death was defeated. Real peace came into the world again. This was the beginning of God’s new creation. God’s greatest warrior really had won his battle.
We can find this peace in our own lives when we change our allegiance from death to life—to King Jesus. When we choose to follow him, our sins are forgiven. Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross paid the price for our wrongdoing. Our lives are reoriented when we enter into the greatest opportunity known to mankind. We can take the peace that’s been given to us and give it to the world—to our families, our friends, our co-workers, our country, and to the ends of the earth.
A good way to begin this reorientation is to pray a prayer like this:
Jesus, you are the true king, the ruler above all other rulers. God has raised you from the dead and shown us that your love is more powerful than anything this sinful world has to offer.
Give me a new life that I may be an ambassador of life to the rest of the world. Defeat death in me that I will be a conqueror of death throughout the world. Bring peace to my heart, to my mind and to my body, that I will bring peace to your world.
Forgive me for the sinful things I’ve done so that I can forgive others for the sinful things they’ve done to me. Use me to bring your will and your kingdom from heaven to earth. Amen.
Though the battles still wage around us and in us, if we come into God’s kingdom, we will find peace. And one day he will come back to bring total harmony to this world again. In the meantime, every time we embrace life rather than death, the reach of his love grows a little more. Let’s bring this good news to the rest of the world!