Peace replaces fear
Pastor John C. Berg
John 14:27 (EHV)
27 “Peace I leave with you. My peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Do not let your heart be troubled, and do not let it be afraid.
This is your daily devotion for March 23rd. I am craving peace in my life. I feel that to be an effective pastor and a prepared father and husband I need to be very aware of the news right now. As I’m sure you’ve experienced, checking the news every hour is not bringing a lot of peace into my life. Just today we found out that our Governor is self-quarantined, the Lt. Governor’s brother has died from COVID-19, Senator Klobuchar’s husband is infected, and the Governor of Wisconsin has ordered Wisconsinites to stay at home. I could go on but the purpose of these devotions is not to make your afraid. Rather, we are looking at the times and reasons Jesus told us not to be afraid.
In John 14 Jesus says, “27 “Peace I leave with you. My peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Do not let your heart be troubled, and do not let it be afraid. The peace Jesus offers is not simply a truce. It’s not a negotiated surrender that inevitably will be broken. It’s not just flattening the curve. It’s the only peace that lasts.
Jesus says that he doesn’t give as the world gives. The world can give us some good things. Toilet paper, hand sanitizer, the internet. But the world can’t take the bad away. Only Jesus can do that. Right now I’m looking at a little 3d printed figure of Jesus carrying his cross. Of course Jesus literally did that, but it’s also symbolic of Jesus carrying away the evil that torments us. He took upon himself our sins and its consequences. In its place he gave us peace, the peace of knowing God’s love and providence. Do not let your heart be afraid, rather let the peace of God drive away the fear. Amen.
Let’s pray: Jesus, when fear strikes our hearts replace it with peace, just as you replaced our sins with your righteousness. Amen.
On Saturday I told you I would share something happy with you each day. Yesterday’s worship service has been watched on Youtube 102 times and it has reached 591 people on Facebook. God is working amazing things through this crisis.
Stay safe in God’s peace!