In Philippians 4:7 Paul the Apostle charges the church of Philippi that “the peace of God that surpasses all understanding will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus”. Important to note about this scripture is the fact that he uses the words ‘the peace of God’ and not just the word ‘peace’ which implies there is a kind of peace that comes from God and a kind that does not come from Him. Thankfully however, the Lord Jesus in one of His teachings made the distinction between the peace that comes from God and the peace that is experienced in the world when he said to His disciples, “Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid John 14:27”. Based on the scripture, one realizes that the world’s perception of peace is not the kind of peace that God wants us to experience as believers for God’s peace does not include worries and neither does it include fear.
God’s Peace is Incomprehensible
A very important piece of information that is outlined in Philippians 4:7 is the fact that the peace of God cannot be fully understood or fathomed by men. It is so deep that Paul describes it as ‘surpassing all understanding’ and perhaps the following two examples can help us understand why this so. When one can learn of the tragic passing of a close friend or a loved one and remains kind, soft-spoken, thoughtful and respectful, that is a kind of peace that no scientist will ever be able to explain. When one’s employer threatens to dismiss him without a cause yet he’s not anxious and loves him (or her) just the same, that is the kind of peace that is not experienced by the world. In other words, God’s peace is immeasurable, it is not tied to any particular individual or circumstance and its characteristics are always consistent with the written word of God.
God’s Peace has Protective Powers
In continuing, Paul went even further to add that the peace of God “will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus” which makes me want to ask, what exactly are our hearts being guarded against? To answer in short, there are quite a number of things that can enter our hearts and cause them to be troubled and fearful, the same thing Jesus has warned us about in John 14:27. Anxiety, fear, deception, discouragement, pride and jealousy are only a few of the many emotions that can negatively affect our hearts which is one of the reasons they must be protected against.
God’s peace which is one of the fruits of the Spirit has the power to protect the heart from discomfort, pain and long-term sadness. It is not the kind that is seasonal, conditional or circumstantial. It is not the kind of peace that is tied to a particular person or personality unlike in the world where its perception of peace is contrary to the written word of God.
God’s peace is a shield for not just our hearts but also our minds, the place where thousands of thoughts are processed in a single day and not to mention a year. God’s peace is not meant to be fully understood but rather fully experienced especially by those who believe in Christ Jesus our Lord and Saviour. With that said, let us remember brethren that the peace of God that surpasses all understanding will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.
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