Matthew 5:9 Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called sons of God.
How do we, as believers, be peacemakers? First, as Christians we learn to live at peace with others. We are called to seek peace, pursue peace, make every effort to live in peace, and as far as possible, as far as it depends on us, to live at peace with everyone, but especially with other believers. The sinful nature produces conflict – hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions, and envy (Galatians 5:19-21). But, the fruit of the Spirit – love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control (Galatians 5:22,23) – promote peace between people. Conflict is unavoidable, but we as believers are called to seek peace wherever possible.
Second, we balance peacekeeping with truth-telling. Peacemaking is not at the expense of dedication to truth. Truth defended can be conflict-promoting in the short-run, but contribute to peacemaking in the long-run. Jesus says that as believers we will be hated by those who oppose Him. Jesus did not seek peace with the religious leaders; He rebuked them. We are also called to protect the weak and vulnerable as we confront the darkness in the world. Our confrontation of sin in another’s life can sometimes lead that person to greater peace with God. Truth doesn’t mix with lies and peacekeeping should not degenerate into a compromise with evil. Jesus, the Prince of Peace, stood against evil in all its forms.
Third, we are not only called to live in peace with others, we are also encouraged to reconcile others when they are in conflict. Our text talks about being peacemakers not just peace keepers. When we seek to promote peace and reconcile those who are at odds with each other, we will be called sons of God because God by nature is a reconciler – the One who brings men together with Himself and with each other. He calls us to reflect His heart for reconciliation both in our own lives and in the lives of others.