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Rays of Light Bible Lessons by Keith Holder

LET THE PEACE OF GOD RULE

Colossians 3:15 And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to the which also ye are called in one body; and be ye thankful.

Peace is much sought after by most of the civilized world. Prayers for world peace continue every day from many forums and venues. Peace is the subject of many songs including one containing this idea, "Let there be peace on Earth, and let it begin with me." Even though the results hoped, are far from achievement, Camp David has been the site of many conferences aimed at establishing a lasting peace within the Arab nations and Israel. More than likely their dogmatic differences will continue into the future, even though a peaceful solution is very desirable throughout the world. Although prevented by a few warmongering, power grabbing, men ,driven by worldly lust for superiority and riches, peace is still the desire of a vast majority of the world's population. Most people wish to live their lives free from war and civil strife; to be free from public disturbance and disorder; to live in safe and secure conditions, where there is law and order.

Between nations, cultures, and ethnic groups, as well as between neighbors and all family members, what a wonderful world it would be to have freedom from all disagreements and quarrels, and to live in perfect harmony and accord. This description of peace is what we generally think about, search for, and pray for. However, this type of peace will never be absolute because of the covetous and lustful nature of mankind. In his epistle, James tells us that wars and fightings are the direct result of lust (Jas. 4:1-2). Both biblical and secular history confirms that, since the day Cain slew his brother Abel, there has never been universal peace among all people. With this track record, it is probably safe to say that world peace, among mankind will never be achieved. The apostle Paul recognized that universal peace would never come about. In his epistle to the church at Rome when he wrote, If it be possible, as much as lieth in you, live peaceably with all men (Rom. 12:18). The structure of this inspired statement tells us that there will always be times when it will be impossible to have complete peace between some people, and between some nations, of the world.

However, there is another peace that is absolute! There is a state in which mankind can live where peace is assured; where there is no war or conflict; where there is quietness and calmness; where tranquility exists, and where serenity is promised. What a glorious state in which to live. All people of the world should immigrate into this state, where peace can found, and make it their permanent dwelling place. Where is this idealistic state? It is in your mind; your state of mind; your mental state. It is here that you can let the peace of God rule. Although peace can never exist between all people of the world, it can, and does, exist between God and His faithful children.

In this one verse of God's word, we know we can live in peace. It is to this peace that God calls us - to the peace of mind that comes with the hope of eternal salvation. God's plan of salvation was, from the beginning of time, predestined for His obedient children. To all that hear His call, obey His will, and become His children, He assures this hope of salvation (See Rom. 8:28-30). Paul, in his writing to the Thessalonian Christians, admonishes them to walk worthy of God, who hath called you unto His kingdom and glory (1 Thess. 2:12). His call goes out today because God is not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance (2 Pet. 3:9b).

We are called to be in one body, the body of Christ. It is the unity of God's children, within this body, in which we find the bond of peace (Eph. 4:3). Peace can only be found where there is unity. Where there is no oneness or singleness of purpose between men and women of the world, agreement and harmony will not exist, and peace will not prevail.

However, there is unity in His body, the church of Christ. Here we find one God and Father of all, one Spirit, one hope, one faith, and one baptism (See Eph. 4:4-6). Being filled with one Holy Spirit (Acts 2:4), Peter and the other apostles preached one sermon (Vss. 14 & 38), professed one hope of salvation (Vs. 21 & 47), which, through one faith, 3000 hearers gladly accepted (Vs. 41), received the remission of their sins through one baptism (Vs 41), and were added to one church, by one God, our Father in heaven. Once in the body of Christ, unity existed and peace prevailed. Speaking of those that obeyed the apostles call to eternal salvation on The Day of Pentecost, Luke tells us that they continued daily with one accord...with gladness and singleness of heart (See Acts 2). Hear God's call. Be baptized into the body of Christ, and here let the peace of God rule within your heart, and be ye thankful.