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Weekly Bible Study
“Happy are the Peacemakers Matthew 5:9”
by Art Sadlier   
December 18th, 2016

"Blessed (happy) are the peacemakers for they shall see God."

1 - The World Cannot Make Peace

There are in excess of 50,000 nuclear weapons in the world. Some have been destroyed, but many have been replaced by more sophisticated ones.

We fear the possibility of nuclear war. We fear because men do not look for peace in the only place peace is truly found.

A - God has provided a sure plan for peace for this world, but man has rejected it. Because man has rejected God's peace plan, just such a cataclysmic war will take place. The book of Revelation tells us that over 2/3 of the earth's population will be killed in that terrible tribulation period.

For all of recorded history man has been trying to bring peace to the earth, but has failed at every turn.

Peace as the world knows it is merely a brief, glorious moment when everybody pauses to reload.

B - Man has a false hope of peace. The world was concerned, in the aftermath of WW 2, with developing an agency for peace. In 1945 the UN was brought into existence. It's motto was, "To have succeeding generations free from the scourge of war." Since that time there has not been one single day of peace on the earth, not one! It is a vain hope.

Man's sin in Eden interrupted the peace. Nevertheless man entertains a false hope of peace.

1 Thessalonians 5:2-3, "For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night, For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape."  Before peace comes to this world, judgment will come first.

Isaiah 13:9, "Behold, the day of the LORD cometh, cruel both with wrath and fierce anger, to lay the land desolate: and he shall destroy the sinners thereof out of it." The prophet is speaking of the coming tribulation period.

C - The peace that God will give. God has a plan to bring peace to this earth. Peace will never be found outside of that plan. Isaiah said, "There is no peace saith my God, to the wicked." There is only one source of peace, Isaiah 9:6, "For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace." Peace is found in a Person. O, that the world would turn to the Prince of Peace! O that mankind would give up all hope of peace apart from crowning Jesus Christ as Lord and King in their hearts.

Peace does not ultimately come from either armament or disarmament. Peace comes from God! John 16:33, Jesus said, "These things have I spoken unto you that ye might have peace."

I am so glad that there is a bright side, there is hope for the nations, and there is hope for peace. After God has judged the nations, they will turn to Him for peace. Isaiah 2:2-4 states, "And it shall come to pass in the last days, that the mountain of the LORD's house shall be established in the top of the mountains, and shall be exalted above the hills; and all nations shall flow unto it.  And many people shall go and say, Come ye, and let us go up to the mountain of the LORD, to the house of the God of Jacob; and he will teach us of his ways, and we will walk in his paths: for out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of the LORD from Jerusalem.  And he shall judge among the nations, and shall rebuke many people: and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruninghooks: nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more." Peace is linked to righteousness, not to disarmament and negotiations.

James 3:18, "And the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace of them that make peace." All of that is background to our text, Matthew 5:9, "Happy are the peace makers."

2 - Three Things a Peacemaker Does.

A - The first thing a peacemaker does is make peace with God Himself. Colossians 1:20-22 states, "And, having made peace through the blood of his cross, by him to reconcile all things unto himself; by him, I say, whether they be things in earth, or things in heaven.  And you, that were sometime alienated and enemies in your mind by wicked works, yet now hath he reconciled  In the body of his flesh through death, to present you holy and unblameable and unreproveable in his sight:" End the war, surrender unconditionally!

Notice the result of receiving Christ is to be made "holy," "unblameable," "unreprovable" in His sight. The result is to become a son instead of an enemy.

B - The second thing a peacemaker does is to bring others to the place of peace with God.

2 Corinthians 5:18-21, "And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation;  To wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation. Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you in Christ's stead, be ye reconciled to God. For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him." Have you ever led a soul to Christ?

O, give me, Lord, thy love for souls, for lost and wandering sheep, that I may see the mutitudes, and weep as thou didst weep.

Help me to see the tragic plight of souls far off in sin. Help me to love, to pray and go, and bring the wandering in.

Are you a peacemaker?

C - The third thing a peacemaker does is to maintain peace with others

 Ephesians 4:3, "Endeavouring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace."

Can you think of those in the church that work at trying to bring unity and peace in the congregation? I hope you cannot think of any who bring disunity and division in the congregation.

3 - Two Things the Peacemaker has.

A - He has an entirely new view of himself. He has seen himself as he really is. He has seen himself as utterly bankrupt. He has seen himself as utterly incapable of resisting evil. Incapable of producing righteousness, he acknowledges that he is poor in spirit.

He has come to the place where he mourns over his sin and failure. His heart is broken over his waywardness and emptiness. He says with Paul, "O wretched man that I am." He realizes that "of himself" he is totally unworthy; he is not entitled to any rights and privileges. He is willing to die to his rights and privileges. He is a dead man. God's glory is now his goal.

B - He has an entirely new view of others. He now knows why people are like they are. He realizes why people act the way they do. It is because they are still being governed by the god of this world.

Paul explains why people act the way they do, "Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience" (Ephesians 2:2). That's the reason.

That enemy of yours, that person that offends you, that person is a victim of self and Satan - he is lost and hell bound. The moment you look at him like that, you are in a position to help him. You are in a position to make peace. The same applies to the offensive believer. You see him as you have so often seen yourself; carnal and walking in the flesh. You pity him and you want to help him. You are then a peacemaker in the world.

With these two new views, notice what follows. We lose our self concern. We are concerned about others. We are concerned about God's glory. We so desire peace that we are willing to suffer wrong and injustice to obtain peace. We are finished with self-interest and self-concern.

4 - Three Ways a Peacemaker Makes Peace.

A - He learns not to speak. The control of the tongue is a major step toward peace. James said, "Be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath."

B - He learns not to say anything harmful to others. Unworthy, unkind things should not be repeated. They make war, not peace.

C - He views every situation in the light of the gospel.  He learns to think along these lines. How will this affect the cause of Christ? How will this affect the body of Christ? How will this affect those outside the church? The moment you begin to think like that you are beginning to be a peacemaker. If you think in terms of your own personal interests you are beginning to make war.

5 - The Offer of Peace.


A combat crew during WW 2 ditched their bomber in the loneliness of the vast Pacific Ocean. Many of them drowned, but five were able to scramble aboard a rubber raft. For 12 days they drifted with no sign of rescuers. The sun burned and scorched their skin. Their rations were exhausted and they shrank into living skeletons. Their lips cracked and their tongues were swollen.

Two men went mad and leaped overboard. Another died quietly and they rolled his body into the sea.

Two were left but when the rescue vessel found the raft only one was alive. He wept as he told the story of his companion's death. "The night before you found me," he said, "It rained and the raft caught a pail of fresh water. I tried to give some to my buddy, it would have saved his life. He fought me; he thought I was trying to poison him with sea water."

My unsaved friend today, that is a picture of your condition. Christ died to save you. He is desperately reaching out to you. He is offering you salvation, full and free. But in your blindness you think He is trying to hurt you and you stubbornly refuse His salvation.

"The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly" (John 10:10).

"Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me" (Revelation 3:20).

"Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven. But whosoever shall deny me before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven" (Matthew 10:32-33).

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