“For he himself is our peace, who has made the two one and has destroyed the barrier, the dividing wall of hostility, by abolishing in his flesh the law with its commandments and regulations. His purpose was to create in himself one new man out of the two, thus making peace, and in this one body to reconcile both of them to God through the cross, by which he put to death their hostility.” Ephesians 2:14-16
I’ve spent the day watching CNN, seeing all the images and hearing all the commentary having to do with 9/11. It all came back to me. Not as powerful as it was when I was sitting in front of my TV for two straight days five years ago, but powerfully enough to bring tears to my eyes again.
So much has happened since then. So much war, violence, and death. So much vitriol. So much anger and hatred. So much fear.
So much politics. Who’s to blame? What should he have done? It would have been better if so-and-so was president! Everyone, including myself, has an opinion. Who is right? “If you’re so smart, Pastor Dave, what would you have done?”
I don’t have the answers for the governments of the world. They wouldn’t listen to what I have to say anyway. If they gave me a chance to address the UN the security guards would drag me off the platform in minutes. The world rejects my answer.
That shouldn’t stop me from offering it. The only hope for peace is Jesus Christ. We are all fallen, sinful, broken people. Apart from him that is what we will always be. He is our peace. Through his work on the cross and by his Spirit we are recreated into new creatures and reconciled to God. This is the only way in which the hostility of nations can be put to death.
“But,” they tell me, “that’s not very practical! That will never happen!” Practical? There is nothing in my hope that is practical! How practical is it that a man from Nazareth would be the Son of God and would pay for the sins of his people by dying on a cross? How practical is it that he would rise from the dead on the third day? How practical is it that he would take a person like me and awaken him from his death and darkness? What does practicality have to do with it?
Power. That’s the answer. The power of God demonstrated through Jesus Christ. The greatest power the world has ever seen. A power greater than all the armies of the world combined. A power greater than all the hatred in the world. The power of the gospel to change lives.
More than anything, these people need to hear the gospel. They may hate us and they may kill the messengers, but they need Christ. He alone is our hope and our peace!