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

 

Jesus knew that He and His followers would never again travel the road that they were on together. Jesus was aware of the plans that people were devising against Him, and He also understood the fact that everything that these people would do would be carried out in order to achieve God’s wishes and to fulfill His plan for the salvation of the world. In this time of reflection and instruction Jesus became very philosophical in the thoughts that He expressed. Yet, His philosophical statements carry with them a very practical quality. The time that these people have spent with Jesus has not always been peaceful; in fact, there has been more turmoil, excitement, and fast-paced movement that down time and rest. Now, all of the stress and the struggles that they encounter are about to accelerate greatly.

 

Yet, Jesus blesses them with peace. This is the gift that He bestows upon them. This peace is a deeply rooted and totally pervasive form of calm and assurance that operates at a level so fundamental as to reshape and redefine the stimuli that come at its holder from the outside and from within the mind. It grants comfort to the heart so that natural fears and concerns are no longer converted into anxiety. The peace that Jesus gave to His followers then and that He grants to us now is based upon our trust of Him, and this comes as a result of our faith in Christ as the true Savior, Lord, and King of all Creation that He, in fact, has demonstrated that He is. Christ’s peace is powerful and it is strong. It withstands the forces of this world as it enables us to pour out God’s righteous love into our culture.

 

The benediction of peace that Christ gives to us is very different in nature from the way that this world attempts to convey peace. Worldly peace is based upon power, control, and acquisition. In general it is given only in exchange for some form of return of the favor. God gives all to us. He gave us His Son, and belief that is founded upon Jesus, the Christ, grants to us an eternal relationship with God that is neither conditional nor is it incomplete. Based upon this relationship with Christ we can live confidently and love totally, for there will be forces and situations in life that will be hard, harsh, and frightening, yet, Christ stands with us always and prevails against all of it. The peace that Jesus brings to us is what allows us to be battered, bruised, and bloodied by life and still joyously proclaim the victory of our souls over it all.