What If It All Depended On You?

What If It All Depended On You?

Brent Smith

Peace Ė Letís just say that you are the deciding factor. If there is going to be peace, it is up to you, and you alone; will there be peace? Paul said, "If it be possible, as much as lieth in you, live peaceably with all men" (Romans 12.18). The NKJV translates "lieth in" as "depends on." Some have taken this verse to mean that even if the other party in a conflict wants peace, but I am just not capable anymore with this person, well then according to Paul itís just not possible for me. But that is not the meaning here. Rather, Paul is saying that as much of the conflict depends on you, then be at peace. You do everything within your power to ensure peace.

There were times even for Christ that peace was impossible, because his enemies were not going to have it, no matter what. They ran him out of town, tried to silence him and tried to kill him again and again. In spite of their vicious attacks he continued to pursue peace even as they crucified him. Having been falsely accused, beaten, spit upon, mocked and nailed to a cross he pursued peace with his enemies until his last breath. Even in death he pursued peace in conquering the one who had the power of death. Even after death he pursued peace, his Gospel of peace being preached to the very people who murdered him. He is truly the "Prince of Peace!"

And we wear his name. His prayer for us is that we might be "one." He knows that we are human and that we are going to sin against one another and hurt one another but he pleads with us through the Bible to be merciful, sympathetic, forgiving Ė to pursue peace (Rom. 14.19, Heb. 12.14). Endeavor for it (Eph. 4.3). So with Jesus as our example, have I really done all that I could possibly do to have peace with my brother or sister in Christ? You say, "well Iíve tried and was not successful." Well try again Ė and again and again Ė and maybe when the pursuit of peace has cost you your life, you can say, "Iíve done all that I could do."


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