ControlAltDispute's Blog

Peace. Peace? [1 of 3]

Posted on: October 28, 2009

[Part 1 of 3]

A friend of mine, Robert Barron, recently led an excellent devotional at a Board of Directors meeting for Sheridan House Family Ministries.  One of the points he made struck me anew even as he was making it:  Robert was explaining that Jesus wanted us to have not just joy, but His joy.

His joy?”  I thought.  How could Jesus – the All Holy One, the Sinless Savior – describe His time on the earth – the fallen, groaning, sinful earth – with a word anything like “joy”?  Do we really understand the vast separation between the holiness of Jesus and the depravity of man?  I’ll answer that one for you:  NO.

Being finite, fallen creatures, we are not able to comprehend the extreme holiness of God.  The best we can do (if we close our eyes tightly, cover our ears, and strain our brains) is think of someone who is a whole lot better than ourselves.

If we cannot fully comprehend the holiness of God, can we at least comprehend the depravity of man?  Well, even though we start out closer to the goal, we still cannot really comprehend it to even a reasonable degree.  Remember, except for the sin that is in our own hearts (which we fancy to be not as bad as the sin in others . . .), we typically can only see the effects of sin.  Even then, we can only see a fraction of the effects of sin as we happen to witness them ourselves (or hear about them on the news, etc.).  Jesus, on the other hand, sees not just the all of the effects of sin, but as God He actually knows men’s hearts  — in other words, He sees the sin itself.  What, then, does God know about men’s hearts?  Well, He knows that they are more deceitful than all else and desperately wicked (Jer. 17:9) for starters.

So I move the previous question:  How can Jesus, who is more holy than we can comprehend, while living with more sin than we can comprehend, describe anything about His incarnation with the word “joy”?

Suppose you got up from your computer right now and walked outside to the nearest septic tank or sewer and jumped right in.  (Got that visual now?)  Do you understand that that doesn’t even compare to Christ leaving heaven in the incarnation?  Now, while you still have that sewage scene in your mind, picture yourself barely floating, up to your neck in . . . it, and calling your friend on the cell phone saying “Boy, I wish you had ‘my joy’ right now!”

Right after that thought, I began to recall that Jesus not only wanted us to have ‘His joy,’ but also ‘His peace.’  (John 14:27)  Peace?  Seriously?  Here?  Now?

As a Christian litigator and mediator, my thoughts about peace on this planet were more like:

“[They cry out] saying ’Peace, peace,’ but there is no peace!” (Jer. 6:14)

“Too long has my soul had its dwelling with those who hate peace.” (Ps. 120:6)

or

“I am for peace, but when I speak, they are for war!” (Ps. 120:7)

So then, whence cometh this Peace of our Lord?  Well, that answer would be in the next two blogs . . . .

In the meantime, think about what is in your life right now that is keeping you from peace.  You’ll need that thought for later.

Until then, Shalom,

— M. Glenn Curran, III, Esquire

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