"Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God. (Matthew 5:9 NASB)
Let’s make this clear, I am a fundamentalist, I believe the scriptures to be authoritative, inerrant, and most importantly sufficient for all matters of life from changing diapers, to sharpening pencils and every other mundane task to the very salvation of one’s soul. I believe that God’s will is only truly accomplished when it is performed God’s way, and I believe the scriptures are the only sufficient source for understanding God’s way. Now with all that said, I see something very troubling among people who make this same profession, there are many, myself at times, that have taken fundamental truths asserted them to be true but inside they are bitter, unbiblically judgmental, divisive, and doubly dead. Moreover they use these very fundamental truths to incite argument and strife, and then act as though this strife as progress. This is what I refer to as dead fundamentalism, because it is not truly fundamental. Now let’s be clear, I am not saying to roll over and die, and I certainly am not saying that we should shy back from confrontation, but confrontation and a chance to stand up will come if you display Christian character, you do not have to bring it on yourself.
Blessed are the peacemakers. Now the reason I speak of dead fundamentalism is that first of all the beatitudes as a whole should smash dead fundamentalism, and secondly this beatitude specifically destroys dead fundamentalism. Blessed are the peacemakers. Now the liberal will go into some peacenik pacifist over arching utopian idea here, and that misses the point also. Jesus is speaking here to individuals, who live individual lives, and encounter individual situations, and in those situations... well... blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called the sons of God. Just so nobody gets the wrong idea here, Jesus is not saying blessed are those who do not disturb the peace, He is saying blessed are those who have an active role in making peace! So when your wife or husband does something that bothers you and in order to keep peace you remain quiet, that is fine and well, but that is not being a peace maker. Being a peace maker is actively seeking forgiveness, and seeking to grant forgiveness, being a peacemaker is actively looking for ways to lay down your own desires and passions to bring peace and fulfillment to someone else. If your bible study revolves around gathering ammo, your bible study is fleshly and God hates it. Now in bible study you will pick up ammo along the way, of course you will, but honest bible study will also teach you the proper way to gently use that ammo, as well as being a peacemaker. Some of you reading this blog are so bent out of shape by current events, and the state of the church, and so on, as am I, that you just want to step back and rail against it all and destroy it. It is like we seek almost a violent revolution or overthrow of the status quo, but the blessed, well they will seek to bring revival peacefully, and let God be the one to bring the hard conviction, division, and pot stirring. This beatitude really ties in with being meek, or gentle, we are to bring the harshest reality on earth as messengers of peace.
Let’s once again reiterate the context of this teaching. Jesus had been out preaching everywhere that men should repent as well as healing the sick and curing diseases. While doing this He began to be followed by a very large group of people. He retreats from that large group and sits down, then His disciples (a small group) come to Him and He begins by teaching the beatitudes. Now I am not sure that had any bearing on what was said here, but context is always important when considering the scriptures.