• Matt Beaney

#288 – THE NEW BIRTH MAKES US A PEACEMAKER (17/2/21)



This week we are considering the seventh Beatitude,

“Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.” (Matthew 5:9)

We can define a peacemaker as those who seek to bring people to peace with God and others.


Today, we are considering that our becoming peacemakers is not optional. The Beatitudes are a portrait of every true Christian. Peacemaking becomes a part of a Christian’s new nature at conversion.

A Christian is one who has been united with Christ in death and resurrection. They have a new spiritual life. They have become children of God. As such, they bear the family-likeness of the Son of God who is a peacemaker! John wrote,

1 Everyone who believes that Jesus is the Christ is born of God, and everyone who loves the father loves his child as well. 2 This is how we know that we love the children of God: by loving God and carrying out his commands. 3 In fact, this is love for God: to keep his commands. And his commands are not burdensome, 4 for everyone born of God overcomes the world. This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith.’ (1 John 5:1-4)

5:1a. How is one ‘born of God’?

5:1b. If we love the Father, whom will we also love?

5:2. We can think that we are loving when, in reality, we are not. How do we know that we ‘love the children of God’?

5:3. How is love for God summarised?

The previous chapter reveals the command that Gods’ children will obey,

‘And he has given us this command: anyone who loves God must also love their brother and sister.’ (1 John 4:21)

In our reading from John 5, John ends with these words,

‘His commands are not burdensome, for everyone born of God overcomes the world.’

Peacemakers are children of God. Peacemakers do not find it a burden to love others. Christians have ‘overcome the world’ - they have a new value system which leads to the pursuit of great relationships.


RESPONSE

Are you are a child of God? Have you put your faith in Jesus? Do you have a desire to obey Jesus’ command to love? How does the Father want you to build deeper more amicable relationships at this time?



COMMUNITY GROUP STUDY - BLESSED ARE THE PEACEMAKERS


Notices

It might be good to begin with notices. Please share from this week’s Church News.


Suggested opener/Ice-breaker

When have you acted as a peacemaker and/or have you had an example of your efforts to make peace going wrong?


Introduction - please share in your group

This week in our discipleship series, we are considering the seventh of the Beatitudes,

“Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.” (Matthew 5:9)

We can define a peacemaker as those who seek to bring people to peace with God and others.


Being a peacemaker, most importantly, involves our being at peace with God and then helping others to have peace with God.

Peace with God is the biggest need of all human beings. All face God's wrath for sin and need salvation.

A Christian is ‘justified through faith’. Justification is a legal idea. It’s to be declared righteous (without sin!) regardless of our behaviour. At the moment of faith, God sees us as having kept the law perfectly in Christ. Peace with God is not the result of our good works. Rather, it by faith in Christ. We read,

‘Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.’ (Romans 5:1)


However, being a peacemaker also involves doing all that we can to bring peace to human relationships. Peacemakers are called 'children of God' because they reflect the family-likeness of Jesus, the ultimate peacemaker.


Bringing peace is not always easy and we need to seek God for wisdom.


Discussion questions

1. Did God speak to you about anything in particular from Sunday's message or the blogs this week?

2. Do you understand 'justification by faith'? Do you understand that you have peace and can only have peace with God through faith in Jesus?

3. We can allow our performance, feelings, circumstances to dictate our peace. How do you, or could you, ensure that you live in the peace of Christ at all times?

3. On Sunday we were asked to consider if we are modelling peacemaking. How well would you say that you are doing this?

4. Nev encouraged us to write down any situations and steps that we will take to make peace. Do you have anything that you would like to share?


Investing and inviting

As peacemakers, we are to bring the message of the gospel to those in our lives.

1) Who has God put into your life that we could pray for together?

2) How are you planning to 'invest and invite'?

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