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Bringing Rest to the Land Bringing Rest to the Land

Bringing Rest to the Land


The United Nations’ Secretary-General’s Report on Peacebuilding and Sustaining Peace (2018) outlines an effort by member states to maintain peace and secure freedom from conflict. They intend “to save succeeding generations from the scourge of war” with “activities aimed at preventing the outbreak, escalation, continuation and recurrence of conflict,” and by “emphasizing that sustaining peace is a shared task and responsibility that needs to be fulfilled by [a country’s] Government and all [of its other] national stakeholders.” Yet every report of war that we continue to hear reminds us that sustained, long-term peace is difficult to secure.

Under King Asa’s rule, Judah experienced ten years of peace. During that time, Asa and Judah were able to fortify their cities and build up a fighting force of 580,000 mighty warriors (v. 8).

But Asa did not solely rely on a large military and prosperous cities to sustain the peace the Lord had provided. He was concerned about spiritual peace as well. He removed every bit of idolatry from Judah and charged Judah to follow the Lord’s commandments (vv. 3–5). When Judah did fall under attack, Asa cried to God for aid in war (v. 11). He acknowledged his dependence on God alone to maintain the peace and prosperity of Judah.

In a similar manner, sustaining peace with each other is not simply a matter of mechanics and pragmatics. When we see potential for conflict, we must rely on the Lord completely. We can take prudent action and pursue godliness, but these do not make us immune to turmoil. In those times, we also remember that ultimately it is God who fights our battles and gives us peace.

Pray with Us

Spring break begins today at Moody Theological Seminary in Chicago. Pray for the MTS professors—Andrew Pflederer, Davis Woodall, Deborah Gordon, John Trent, and Ryan Cook—asking God to give them time of rest and rejoicing with Him.

BY Dr. Eric C. Redmond

Dr. Eric C. Redmond serves as a professor of Bible at Moody Bible Institute in Chicago and as associate pastor of adult ministries at Calvary Memorial Church in Oak Park, Ill. He is married to Pam and they have five children. He is the author of Say It!  Celebrating Expository Preaching in the African American Tradition (Moody Publishers), Where Are All the Brothers? Straight Answers to Men's’ Questions about the Church (Crossway), a commentary on Jonah in the Christ-Centered Exposition Series (B&H Publishers), and a study guide on Ephesians in the Knowing the Bible series (Crossway).

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