Gal. 5:22-23, “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things, there is no law.” Peace is translated from the NT Greek word, “eirene,” and carries the meaning of “having it all together.” The antithesis of that could be described as “chaos.” When there is no peace, our lives are a mess, so to speak. Without peace there is also no order, and we are constantly in a state of unrest. A life lived like that is uncomfortable at best, and at worst, downright scary.
We may find ourselves spiritually at war as well. Not only with the powers of darkness, but also within ourselves. Paul writes of a battle between good and evil that wages in his body in Rom. 7:23, “but I see in my members another law waging war against the law of my mind and making me captive to the law of sin that dwells in my members.” When that happens we are in a state of upheaval. If we battle alone, we risk growing weary and losing the battle. It is exhausting when we constantly have to fight – when that war between good and evil is playing out in our bodies. Happiness flees from us and discontentment rules the day, but it does not have to be that way.
If peace does not exist when chaos rules, then the opposite is also true – when it exists, chaos is driven from our lives. Paul says you are to “let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts…” (Col. 3:15) because the sacrifice of Christ on the cross affords us that tranquility of mind, heart, and soul. The Greek meaning of the word also conveys a sense of inner peace and harmony. To get that, however, is not merely a matter of being joyful amidst life’s difficulties. That will not last, and before long, you will be beaten down to your knees. We cannot stand up indefinitely to the trials of life on our own. It takes more than that – it takes reconciliation with God.
That is the source of true peace in our lives. When we focus our attention on Christ, we can embrace the fullest extent of peace available to us. It is more than having an armistice with an adversary; that is short-lived since the enemy is always on the prowl, devising new ways to attack. The peace Paul is speaking of transcends that earthly kind. It finds some meaning in the Hebrew word “Shalom .”In ancient times, it meant making something whole again, while it would later also mean “wholeness” and “well-being.” When we understand the true meaning of peace, we realize how satisfying it can be when we are able to live according to it.
The lack of chaos that it brings about allows us to concentrate on our relationship with Christ in an ultra-focused manner. No distractions mean clearer understanding, and clearer understanding means a more obedient lifestyle. God wants you to have peace in your life. 2 Thess. 3:16, “Now may the Lord of peace himself give you peace at all times in every way. The Lord be with you all.” God wants you to experience the joys of living a life free from the distractions of sin and guilt. It is a tranquility that is beyond our understanding, and it protects us as well. Phil. 4:7, “And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
The mind without conflict will be less likely to be depressed and less likely to have thoughts of self-loathing or self-hurt. It will not seek out the pleasures of the flesh because it fosters happiness and contentment, not sin and resentment. The pressures of life, with all its trials and tribulations, will be smoothed out, and life will be “good .”And nothing, not even monetary woes, loss of health, or even a loved one, will be able to rob us of the inner tranquility it brings us. Trials and loss will hurt, but the peace that passes all understanding will comfort and strengthen us. Try it…it is free with obedience to the scriptures.