We can’t have peace among others if we don’t have peace within ourselves (v 1).
This makes total sense to me but it begs the question, “What would cause a lack of peace within?”
We all want peace. But how many of us would say that we currently feel internal peace? So – assuming some of you said “no” – the next question would be, “Why not?”
I took the first 5 verses and worked backward.
- God placed his Spirit within us to worship him and he is jealous over it.
- But our flesh desires friendship with the world.
- This causes us to ask for things with selfish motives and then become bitter when we don’t receive them.
- It also causes us to not ask for things of God and so we also do not receive those things which leaves us unfulfilled.
- We are thus at war within ourselves – flesh vs Spirit.
No wonder we are at odds amongst ourselves if we’re all walking around bitter and unfulfilled. The result is quarrels and fights and anger and envy and speaking evil of one another (v 1,2,11). This isn’t any of us – of course – let’s just say that we all “have a friend” who could maybe relate. 😉
What is the solution?
God – give us a heart that only desires you. Give us a single mindedness that pursues the things that make for peace (Luke 19:42.) May we long for Christ more than comfort.