IN THE DAYS OF HIS POWER SERIES.
TOPIC: FINDING AND KEEPING THE PEACE THAT PASSED ALL UNDERSTANDING
COMPILED EDITED BY:-
Rev. Innocent Peace-Udochukwu
President Living Fountain Ministries Int’l LIFOM.
“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:6-7).
In today’s world where bad and frightening news of COVID19, TERRORIST ATTACKS, KIDNAPPINGS, RAPES, VARIOUS TYPES OF SICKNESSES AND DEATHS is the order of the day, we need more than ever before the PEACE OF GOD, NOT JUST THE PEACE OF GOD, BUT THE PEACE THAT PASSED ALL UNDERSTANDING to maintain our testimony and to some extent our sanity in an insane world.
When we encounter circumstances that stretch beyond our understanding it’s easy to question the goodness of God. Anxiety often comes into play when we attempt to circumvent trust. We opt for controlling our circumstances because clinging to control feels so much easier than giving way to trust. The truth is, we can’t have peace and also live with a preconceived idea of what everything should look like. As much as we’d like it to be, peace is not in the outcome. Peace is a Person. Trusting the Prince of Peace is an invitation to not have to know everything.
He’s Emmanuel, and that means every mystery is an invitation to discovery; every unanswered question is just some form of goodness not yet in full view.
Regardless of what chaos we encounter, His nearness is guaranteed. He’s on the boat. May we be the ones who embrace mystery over certainty; may we be marked by trust.
What Is the Peace That Surpasses All Understanding?
That means that no matter our circumstances, whether we are facing death, torture, arrest, or ridicule, we’ll be able to handle it in stride. Our faith in God dispels fear and conquers the evil one, leaving us content in whatever life brings.
A favorite Bible passage often used in times of strife, stress, or struggle comes from the Apostle Paul’s letter to the early church in Philippi.
As he winds the letter to a close, Paul writes, “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:6-7).
The notion of God’s peace being able to guard and protect us can be a welcome balm for our troubled souls.
Some translations of the Bible use the word “surpass” in place of “transcend,” but the meaning is much the same. God’s peace is so great we cannot possibly comprehend its fullness, so great it overshadows even the mightiest of concerns.
But what is the peace that surpasses all understanding? And how can we get that peace?
What Does Peace Mean in This Passage?
The original Greek word used here for peace, eiréné, is defined by Strong’s Concordance as “one, peace, quietness, or rest”— it’s a giving over, a blissfully relaxing, much like the carefree sleep of a child who has no worries because all their concerns are handled.
Peace can often be translated with a militaristic perspective in mind, such as the absence of human conflict or battles, but here it’s used more in reference to a state of mind.
Eiréné is possibly derived from the root word eiró, which means “to join,” as in a state of harmony and connection.
For Paul’s intended audience, people often torn apart by religious persecution and cultural strife, the concept of peace is a desirable one.
What Does ‘Surpasses All Understanding’ Mean?
The Greek phrase “uperechousa panta noun” is translated to mean “surpasses all understanding.” Uperechousa, or its transliterate version huperechó, comes from the words huper (which means over, or beyond) and echó (have, or hold), according to Strong’s Concordance — basically, “to hold above, to rise above, to be superior.”
This, then, is something that is far above the norm, vastly beyond the regular.
There are other gifts of God that are not fully comprehensible to us. The gift of salvation is “indescribable” (2 Corinthians 9:15). The complexity and wisdom of God’s plan is inscrutable (Isaiah 55:8–9). According to Ephesians 3:19, the love of Christ is something else so great we will never fully understand it. Likewise, human reasoning is incapable of fully comprehending the peace of God.
The believer who places his or her full confidence in a loving God and is thankful in every circumstance will possess a supernatural peace. An inner calm will dominate the heart. The faithful believer will know peace—his heart and mind are “guarded” by it—despite the tempest raging without. No one, especially those outside of Christ, will be able to fathom that peace. To most, it will remain a mystery how someone can be so serene in the midst of turmoil.
The peace that comes from being in a right relationship with God is not the peace of this world. The world’s peace depends on having favorable circumstances: if things are going well, then we feel peaceful; when things go awry, the peace quickly dissipates. Jesus made the distinction between His peace and the world’s vacillating peace: “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives” (John 14:27).
God’s supernatural peace surpasses natural understanding.
How Can We Get Peace That Surpasses All Understanding?
“Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ” (Romans 5:1).
“For this reason I bow my knees before the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth is named, that according to the riches of glory he may grant you to be strengthened with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith – that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may have strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.
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