In my last post I looked at wisdom, here we will look at peace coming from wisdom by focusing on two verses from a longer passage I highlighted in my previous post.
17 But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, willing to yield, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality and without hypocrisy. 18 Now the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace by those who make peace. James 3:17–18 (NKJV)
James referenced righteousness being sown by those who make peace. James didn’t reference those who maintain peace, those who seek peace or those who want peace. James spoke of those who make peace. Jesus made a similar statement.
9 Blessed are the peacemakers, For they shall be called sons of God. Matthew 5:9 (NKJV)
Understanding the role of peacemakers requires looking at the process of actually making peace and the outcome. James said that righteousness is sown in peace by those who make peace. The words and concepts in verses 17-18 are relational. Take the phrases ‘without partiality’ and ‘without hypocrisy.’ Here James is getting at our motivations. Being peacemakers and sowing peace requires that we be fair and just (see also Micah 6:8). That is inherent in these statements. We are also required to be merciful. In essence sowing peace is a calling to walk in integrity and compassion.
Being a peacemaker is also a call to exercise discernment and apply wisdom from above in situations that may be fraught with conflict. Exercising discernment is also a call to walk in love.
9 And this I pray, that your love may abound still more and more in knowledge and all discernment, 10 that you may approve the things that are excellent, that you may be sincere and without offense till the day of Christ, 11 being filled with the fruits of righteousness which are by Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God. Philippians 1:9–11 (NKJV)
After all Paul informed us that faith works through love (Galatians 5:6).
Putting all of this together tells us two things. The first is that we can find the same message woven into the scriptures in a variety of places. The second is that we cannot walk into situations that require peace thinking we already ‘know’ no matter what information we possess. We need to seek His wisdom to navigate the situation. For example, having mediated for decades I have seen the impact of assumptions and judgments over and over. The fruit is lawsuits not peace. In my experience getting people to actually listen to one another rather than judge one another is often the path to resolution.
If we are to respond to our calling to be peacemakers let us seek His wisdom from above and look for the fruit.