Peace, Peace, There Is No Peace

“They have healed also the hurt of the daughter of my people slightly, saying, Peace, peace; when there is no peace.” (Jeremiah 6:14)

This indictment by the prophet Jeremiah of the false prophets of his day could easily find a parallel today. The charge was repeated (8:11), so Jeremiah evidently considered it important. The prophet Ezekiel later leveled almost the same indictment against the false prophets of his time: “They have seduced my people, saying, Peace; and there was no peace” (Ezekiel 13:10).

Almost every person would prefer to live in peace, of course. The word itself has become almost an ironic cliché. Our annual observance of Veterans Day (originally called Armistice Day) wistfully expresses the hope that when the current war is settled, it will be the final war, and thenceforth there will be “peace, peace.” The word “armistice” is from the Latin and means “arms standing still.”

But there is no real peace; there were numerous wars back during Babylonian times and Roman times and medieval times and all times! Even today there are dozens of small “wars and rumours of wars” going on in any given year (Matthew 24:6) and will continue to be so until Christ, the “Prince of Peace” (Isaiah 9:6), comes back to “speak peace unto the heathen” and to establish His kingdom of peace “even to the ends of the earth” (Zechariah 9:10).

In the meantime, James reminds us of our personal guilt: “From whence come wars and fightings among you? come they not hence, even of your lusts that war in your members?” (James 4:1). And Paul exhorts: “Finally, brethren, . . . be of one mind, live in peace; and the God of love and peace shall be with you” (2 Corinthians 13:11). HMM

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