“Blessed are those who work for peace, for they will be known as children of God” (Matt. 5:9).
What needs to be pointed out immediately is that the peace that Jesus enjoins is not a passive acceptance of everything that comes along, but an active involvement that confronts the problem and works through to a satisfactory resolution. It is one with the psalmist who wrote, “Strive for peace with all your heart” (Psalm 34:14, TEV). Contemporary culture has been cluttered for quite some time with those who carry signs regarding some aspect of nature – and they have a right to do that, but protest has to merge into something a lot more helpful before the “dream” swill can come to fruition. Common sense encourages positive involvement in that which helps change to happen.
The peace of which Jesus is speaking in this verse is not the eradication of some global problem or even the absence of war (and both are desirable), but in context he is referring to the establishment of right relationships between members of the human family. Human nature drives a wedge between people by appealing to the beneficial aspects of an issue to one person or group rather than to the community at large. Unfortunately, we are people who find it amazing easy to accept whatever benefits us. It runs contrary to one of Jesus’ basic teachings –concern for the other that restores the group to personal and corporate health.
It is a peace that restores. Broken relationships rob people of the deep joy of life. They take up the valuable time that could have been used for the betterment of all involved. They lodge in a person’s mind and heart in a way that makes it impossible to think seriously about reconciliation.