From whence come wars and fightings among you? come they not hence, even of your lusts that war in your members? Ye lust, and have not: ye kill, and desire to have, and cannot obtain: ye fight and war, yet ye have not, because ye ask not. Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts.
Although James is writing his letter to believers, he also exposes something that is applicable to all of the human race. We all long for peace. No one in their right mind desires conflict, fighting, and war. There is a problem, though. We rarely achieve peace. Most of us would admit there is conflict in our lives. Why is this? Where does this conflict come from? Who can help us?
On a global scale, peace is offered, promised, manipulated, politicized, but rarely delivered. Twice (Jeremiah 6:14, 8:11) the prophet Jeremiah speaks of those who say, “Peace, peace, when there is no peace.” Ezekiel speaks of lying prophets who falsely declare peace when there is no peace (Ezekiel 13:10). Jesus told us in Matthew 24:6 that there would wars and rumors of wars.
On a personal and spiritual level, we too desire peace. Unfortunately, we experience conflict internally, in our families, and in our churches. Once again, I ask all of us, Why? True peace only comes from one Source, and His name is JESUS. Through Jesus we have been given peace with God. Peace with God was given to us once and it will last eternally. Jesus also has provided us the opportunity to have the peace of God. The peace of God should rule and reign in our hearts through His power every day. When we do not allow the Holy Spirit to control us and when we are not surrendered to His will, the peace of God leaves and conflict enters.
As I read James 4:1-3, these words came to my mind. They are the enemies of our peace, both personally and spiritually (as James was writing about), and globally. Here is a short list of the enemies of peace.
Think on these honestly in light of James 4:1-3. Ask yourself if any of these have taken root in your heart. They will destroy your peace and they are some of the reasons the human race has been at war since the beginning. Jesus is not only the Source of our peace, but He is also the Victor over each one of these enemies. In Isaiah 9:6 we see that one of His names is the Prince of Peace. He needs to be seated on the throne of your heart. If He is, you will know Him daily as the Prince of your Peace. One day, and I cannot help but think it is very soon, He will come back and sit upon His earthly throne and the world will know Him as the one true Prince of Peace.
photo credit: Sharon Atkins