No longer will violence be heard in your land, nor ruin or destruction within your borders, but you will call your walls Salvation and your gates Praise. – Isaiah 60:18
No matter who we are, where we are from, or whatever we do, we all want peace in our neighborhoods, communities, country, and world. As a species, we have been fortunate to survive eons of anger, conflict, and violence. As a planetary people, we have been tainted with the sins of inhumanity, cruelty, and hostility. Sometimes we wake up and wonder where it will all end. Sometimes we see no solution to the violence; sometimes we feel there is no answer to all of the conflicts across the world.
And yet, we worship Christ as the Prince of Peace, so we basically believe that all of this hostility will end. We put our faith in God who is holy, just, and good, so there will be a passing away of all of these tragedies and conflicts. We ardently hope and look forward to a day as foretold by the prophet Isaiah, when God’s salvation will surround and protect us, when we will find the gate that leads to an everlasting time of peace, praise, joy, and love.
At the end of the Bible, in the Book of Revelation, we can read these beautiful words which echo those spoken by Isaiah:
‘And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Look! God’s dwelling place is now among the people, and He will dwell with them. They will be His people, and God Himself will be with them and be their God. ‘He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death’ or mourning or crying or pain, for those former things will have passed away.”’
- Revelation 21:3-4.
So let us not give up hope, but instead may we keep praying for peace and that violence will come to an end. Let us seek justice in our communities and show true love to one another. In doing so, we will discover God’s peaceable Kingdom on Earth and Christ’s grace in our daily lives.
Questions for personal reflection
Where can I spread peace and love in my life? How can I support those who seek justice in my community?
Prayer: Lord Jesus, the challenges that we face today have always been a sorrowful part of the human condition. Long ago, You spoke words of peace and love, justice and mercy in order to help us build a better world, a brighter future, and a basic foundation for Your Kingdom on Earth. Help us at this crucial time to seeks Your ways and apply Your words in our lives, wherever we go, whatever we do, and whomsoever we meet. In Your Holy Name, we pray. Amen.
John Stuart is the Scottish pastor of Erin Presbyterian Church in Knoxville, Tennessee. If you would like to ask questions or make comments about today’s message, please send him an email to Traqair@aol.com.
Today’s image is one of John’s drawings called ‘Prince of Peace.’ If you would like to view a larger version, please click this link: Prince.