Thursday, March 20, 2014


All Christians know we that the body of Christ should be in unity.

There are two main ways to do this:

1. Accept and tolerate every point of view so we can all get along.
It has been said that if you put 100 people in a room, you will have 100 different opinions. Accepting every point of view seems like a good ideas until you realize you are not really in unity.

2. Learn the correct point of view.
If we all have the same point of view, there will be absolutely no disagreement or dissension on any issue!

The latter, not the former is God's plan for unity!

Heaven is not merely an imaginary ideal to inspire us to keep striving to make things better. Many are resigned to the concept that heaven just a "fairy-tale" for the young or ignorant! Many even consider those who believe in heaven as "weak" or "needing a crutch."

With that in mind, many accept the notion that life will always be miserable, but perhaps they can form a moderately decent world through compromise, blending many opinions into one. There is no hope is for the glorious, new heaven and earth promised in the Word of God. The only vision of hope is for something we can accept rather than embrace and look forward to!

Conversely, the heaven God created is real and glorious!

It is a place where we all have the same mind!

Paul wrote on this topic:

...fulfill my joy by being like-minded, having the same love, being of one accord, of one mind.
Phil 2:1-2

Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus.
Phil 2:5

15 But he who is spiritual judges all things, yet he himself is rightly judged by no one.
16 For “who has known the mind of the Lord that he may instruct Him?” But we have the mind of Christ.
1 Corinthians 2:15-16

Christians should be examples of how to get along!

It is to be understood that when we have differing opinions, we should try to be at peace with those who have opposing views:

14 Pursue peace with all people, and holiness, without which no one will see the Lord.
Hebrews 12:14

18 If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men.
Romans 12:18

There is one level of unity which comes from being at peace with others and "getting along."

But you can see that a much higher level of unity exists when we all have the same mind!

It is a beautiful thing when we cooperate with each other!

Yet it cannot compare with the transcending, glorious, joyful unity of God!

We can see now why God does not and can not allow everyone into heaven!

If He did, we would have a world very much like the one we live in right now! It would be a place where there is arguing and fighting. We could try to get along but there would always be an underlying sense of division!

Heaven will not be a place where everyone has my point of view! It will not be a place where everyone has your point of view!


8 “For My thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways My ways,” says the Lord.
9 “For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways,
And My thoughts than your thoughts.
Isaiah 55:8-9

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Thursday, March 6, 2014


The word peace evokes thoughts of of quiet places and rest from our enemies and the noise of battle. Problems are resolved and negative circumstances are removed from our lives.

Some may imagine themselves on Caribbean shoreline, sipping a cool drink, others fishing next to a quiet river, still others resting on a mountaintop after a difficult climb.

There is a "natural peace" in this world. I don't believe we were created and designed by God for constant strife and pressure. We need times of "natural peace" in which we coast for awhile and rest from the weary world.  

Jesus told His disciples to rest:

31 He said to them, “Come away by yourselves to a remote place and rest for a while.” For many people were coming and going, and they did not even have time to eat.
32 So they went away in the boat by themselves to a remote place.
Mark 6:31-32
Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB) Copyright © 1999, 2000, 2002, 2003, 2009 by Holman Bible Publishers,
Nashville Tennessee. All rights reserved.

It was God Himself who instituted the Sabbath and gave us an example by resting on the seventh day after creating the world!

On the other hand, there is different kind of peace that the Apostle Paul wrote about:

6 Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God;
7 and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.
Philippians 4:6-7

There is a "peace of God" which transcends our circumstances and "surpasses all understanding!" This peace comes from God. It is imparted supernaturally despite negative circumstances or pressures of life, wherever we may be geographically at any given moment! 

Paul identifies it as part of "the fruit of the Holy Spirit!"

22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, PEACE, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,
23 gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law.
Galatians 5:22-23

Can we have peace in the midst of a stress, battles, pressures in the worst places? Emphatically - yes! We can have God's peace anywhere under any circumstances!

This does not mean that we don't need wisdom when we have a choice of circumstances or location! It is normal to have quiet times and be in quiet places in our lives. Sometimes a lack of peace is brought on by our own choices. We may be taking on too much. We may not be setting appropriate boundaries. Many Christians feel that they must never say, "no" to any request, bringing more burdens than God intended for us to bear! Others may lack peace because they keep emotions "bottled up" rather than communicating them honestly!


We must be prayerful about what God wants us to do! When we arrive at a place of confidence that God is calling us to do something, we become candidates for God's supernatural peace!

Does that mean it will come automatically because we are in God's will?

No! being in the center of God's will is a huge step toward entering into "the peace of God!"
However, there is more to do!

Once we have found what God has called us to do and where God wants us to be, we must practice our daily walk with Him!

Notice that, in his letter to the Philippians, Paul connects "the peace of God" with prayer and *supplication!  (Supplication is translated as entreaty, expressing desire and earnest, humble prayer)

The level of our walk with God and our prayer life has everything to do with our level of peace!

Natural peace is limited! Problems and anxiety will follow us to new activities and places, We may obtain some temporary peace by going to a quiet place or changing our circumstances.

But if we can learn how to enter God's presence, we can use the quiet times and places in our lives to enter into His supernatural peace!

I don't want to make this sound like some quick formula for success.

C.S. Lewis wrote a series of books called "The Chronicles of Narnia." Aslan is the mighty Lion who represents Jesus in the series. In one line, it is said of Aslan, "He is not a tame lion!"

The same may be said of God. We cannot "tame" Him! We cannot put Him in our little cage, throw Him some meat and bring Him out to perform tricks for us! His ways and thoughts are infinitely higher than ours! (Isaiah 55:8-9)

We cannot take a quick "one-and-done" quiet time and expect that we will be overflowing with God's peace from that time forward, never again having to spend time in God's presence!

Nor is it true that there will never be moments when our peace is shaken temporarily just because we have developed a prayer life!

Paul himself dispelled this mistaken notion:

7 But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellence of the power may be of God and not of us.
8 We are hard-pressed on every side, yet not crushed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; 9 persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed—
10 always carrying about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our body.
11 For we who live are always delivered to death for Jesus’ sake, that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our mortal flesh.
2 Corinthians 4:7-11

We are humans, subject to human frailties and life is a battle - not a playground. Many things may come along and attempt to shake us from the peace of God!

But God has give us the tools and weapons to overcome!

If we choose to enter the battles of life and develop a lifestyle of seeking God, the peace of God will regularly bring us respite from the stresses and battles of life.

It won't always take the form of removing us from battles or trials. Sometimes, it will come as the sweet, supernatural "peace of God which surpasses all understanding!"

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