"The God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet." Romans 16:20
Peace is a powerful weapon against the enemy of our souls! The secret to resisting the work of Satan is learning to remain in a constant state of supernatural peace. This peace that transcends all understanding is found in God - the God of peace. Paul writes,
"And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus." Phil. 4:7
The question is, "How do I remain in God's peace?"
Jesus, the Prince of Peace, lived in God's peace while on earth. He could rest in the presence of His enemy whilst others lost their peace. For example, Jesus slept in the boat in the storm whilst His disciples panicked. When Jesus was wakened by the disciples, He rebuked the storm from a place of peace (see Mark 4:35-41).
Christ left us an example of how the believer should respond to false accusations and the attacks of the enemy. He writes,
"To this you were called, because Christ suffered for you, leaving you an example, that you should follow in his steps. 'He committed no sin, and no deceit was found in his mouth.' When they hurled their insults at him, he did not retaliate; when he suffered, he made no threats." 1 Peter 2:21-23
How did Jesus keep His peace in the face of injustice and the false accusations of His enemies?
"Instead, he entrusted himself to him who judges justly." 1 Peter 2:23
Jesus placed His life in the Father's hands. He trusted God in the face of His enemies. He dined with the Father in the presence of His enemies (Psalm 23:5)!
We see then that Jesus remained in God's peace by constantly being conscious of the Father's presence (1 Peter 2:19) and by entrusting His life to the Father.
Writing from prison, the apostle Paul exhorts the Philippians -
"Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me - put into practice. And the God of peace will be with you." Phil. 4:9
Paul could write with authority because he himself learned to live in peace in the face of persecution and hardship! He knew how to be in constant peace whatever the circumstances. He writes,
"I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plently or in want. I can do everything through Christ who gives me strength." Phil. 4:11-13
Paul knew the secret of finding peace in every circumstance - trusting in Christ! It was Jesus who gave him the strength to remain in God's peace as Paul fixed his eyes on Christ rather than on reacting to his circumstances. Whether imprisoned with Silas after severe beating or in chains in Rome, Paul remained God-conscious and prayed, praised and worshipped God in every circumstance (see Acts 16:24,25!).
Consequently, Paul, speaking form experience, encourages the Philippians to do the same! He writes,
"Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus." Phil. 4:4-7
Very practically, Paul then continues to show the Church how to keep her peace:
"Finally brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable - if anything is excellent or praiseworthy - think about such things." Phil. 4:8
Paul was able to remain in a constant state of peace in all that he went through by remaining God-conscious and by keeping his mind on "things above" (Col. 3:2).
Finally, Paul could remain in God's peace as he not only trusted in God but also trusted in God's faithfulness. He writes,
"And my God will meet all your needs according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus." Phil. 4:19
Paul's confidence and peace lay in his faith in what God was able to do and what God would do!
Remain in God's peace
In summary then we see that in order to remain in God's peace, we need to:
- remain God-conscious
- trust God
- think on things above
- trust in God's faithfulness
I want to encourage you today to "seek peace and pursue it" (Ps 34:14). No matter what you are going through right now, you can experience God's supernatural peace. Resist the enemy and rest in God.