Romans 5:1, “Therefore, being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.”
There is the widest possible difference between a man being just in his own eyes, and his being justified in the sight of God. Yet perhaps no fallacy is more common than to mistake the one for the other. Then, as a natural consequence of building on a weak foundation; the structure, however appealing to the eye, is insecure.
The peace in which multitudes of professors delight themselves is only peace with their own conscience and not in any sense, peace with God. I know of no greater contrast than there is between that peace which is a mere stagnation of thought, a lull of anxiety, or a blindness to danger, and that soul satisfying peace which passes all understanding! A blindness to danger reminds me of a grandson who at the age of four or five, would take his tricycle to the top of the hill, close his eyes and ride down as if he thought nothing could happen to him if he couldn’t see; That my friend is a lull of anxiety and stagnation of thought.
However, the true peace of God flows like a river of unceasing activity; it preserves a tranquil frame amidst storm, tempest, and tribulation by all of which it is frequently assaulted. It is a part of the panoply of God with which a Christian is clothed, to withstand principalities, and powers, and spiritual wickedness in the evil day. Christ gave his disciples this peace as a charm, when as he was about himself to depart and go to the Father, he sent them forth to be buffeted about in the world. We don’t delude ourselves taking reformation as a substitute for God’s grace.
Peace with God is first given, and afterwards comes experience of tribulations everywhere. Life has proven it. There is a natural disposition of sin to defile, but the blood of Christ speaks peace in the conscience. There is a constant tendency of the world to destroy our hope, but the peaceful word of Jesus comforts us, “Be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.” There is a painful proneness of human strength to fail, but the promises of God support us.
True peace gives to the believer an inward sense of God’s acceptance. As Moses never lost sight of the goodwill of the “dweller in the bush,” so, too there is a more blessed assurance goodwill, that always realizes, “God in Christ reconciling the world to himself.”
We often reform our surroundings, by redecorating or our company by going to a different church. Maybe we will reform our activities by learning some new sport. These things may be great and acceptable in our eyes, even if the floor under the new rug is dirty, or the new church is unfriendly, and we just don’t get the new sport. All the moral things, of which man speaks, will be very excellent in the temple of Christianity if they are placed at the top; but if they are used as foundations, a builder might as well use tiles, and slates and chimney-pots for foundations and cornerstones as use these reformatory actions as a ground of dependence.
PEACE WITH GOD IS THROUGH OUR LORD AND SAVIOR JESUS CHRIST!