Warring for Peace

Last Word

by Mike Matthews on July 1, 2011
Featured in Answers Magazine

Should Christians be battling over the age of the earth and the length of the days of creation? The answer is not ours to decide.

Two different statements came from the Lord’s mouth. “Blessed are the peacemakers” and “I did not come to bring peace but a sword” (Matthew 5:9, 10:34).

Neither of them is optional.

In the perspective of the King of kings, His servants are to be both warriors and peacemakers at the same time. In one hand they hold “the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God” (Ephesians 6:17), and in the other they hold an olive branch.

Some people might consider these two demands to be in conflict, but the key to understanding and implementing the King’s desires is to understand what He means by peace. Peace, as the Prince of Peace desires it, is complete harmony with God (2 Corinthians 5:18; Psalm 85:10).

In order to achieve that kind of peace in a sin-cursed world, conflict is necessary. So Christ’s marching orders to His followers include the strong words “contend earnestly for the faith which was once for all delivered to the saints” (Jude 1:3).

The question for believers is not whether to obey either of these desires, but how and when to obey them both. This is a spiritual battle, which can only be done with the Holy Spirit’s constant direction. If we wander off to fight for our own private objectives, then we’re bound to violate the Lord’s goals for His troops.

Christ’s words are plain: we are to be peace-lovers who will willingly fight at any personal cost to achieve peace. So the question is not “Shall we fight?” but “Is this the Lord’s battle?” And once we get caught up in the battle, we must keep our sight on the ultimate objective: real peace.

For five years the magazine’s goal has been to equip believers with a better understanding of the foundational battle of our generation—the authority of God’s Word, beginning in Genesis.

Ever since this magazine was founded, the underlying goal has been to equip believers with a better understanding of the foundational battle of our generation—the authority of God’s Word, beginning in Genesis.

Like the Lord, we are to love our enemies. But because we love them, we want to point out that they are God’s “enemies” so they can find peace with Him. We don’t shortcut peace by pretending, “Peace, peace! When there is no peace” (Jeremiah 6:14).

God doesn’t want us distracted by secondary issues (Titus 3:9; 1 Timothy 1:4). Instead, He wants us to determine the main issues, and then fight all-out for them.

While the details can get complicated regarding Genesis 1–11, the bottom line is simple. When it comes to the history recorded in Genesis, God’s integrity is at stake. His Word has clearly explained sin’s entry into the world—Adam’s rebellion in the Garden. If Christians tinker with the Bible’s early history, they make God the author of evil.

In the pages of every issue of this magazine, you’ll find articles exploring variations on this main theme. For instance, see “Unity . . . At What Cost?” (p. 57).

We want readers to see for themselves, from God’s own Word, why Genesis is a fighting issue. The God of all peace wants to reconcile sinners to Himself. He wants them to come to know and love Him, in all His perfect truth, goodness, mercy, and love. That’s why He recorded Genesis.

As we have opportunity over the next five years, we hope to continue to point believers toward that perfect peace found only in His Son—Jesus Christ, the Creator and Savior.

Mike Matthews is the editor in chief of Answers magazine.

Answers Magazine

July – September 2011

Answers magazine is now in its sixth year of publication. To celebrate, we’ve produced a special double-length issue that features “the best of the first five years.” In addition to our regular departments and many new articles, we show all our timeless favorites (making this a truly collectible edition!). This special commemorative issue also makes a great gift item, which you can share with others who need to be challenged, encouraged, and equipped with some of “the best” in modern biblical creationism!

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