“Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God”. (Matthew 5:9)
Peace to you. (John 20:19) We often repeat to one another in church services Shalom to you, meaning peace to you. Wuellner writes on page 114 of our study book saying this means, “wholeness, well-being, a deep and energized harmony of body and soul. It implies a close relationship of blessedness and healing with God.”
She goes on to say, “The person who brings the shalom, that vibrant, energized wholeness, brings peace not only between the outer and inner contrast but also to the deepest blocks within.”
This is a great, exciting venture we are on to be a peacemaker. And, to be called a child of God brings a smile to my face. Let’s get started in our study and offer peace to ourselves and others.
I heard this art work is a stain glass window in a Catholic Church in Nebraska, USA And, they labeled it well.
~Blessed are the peacemakers~“The dove represents the Holy Spirit. The sword, spear, pruning hook and plow represents Isaiah 2:4 “They shall beat their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning hooks.” The olive branch and olives represent peace.”
14 thoughts on “The Seventh Beatitude”
This beatitude study looks a little lonely on comments would you say?
I got stuck when it seems to me from study passivity doesn’t belong in the column of peacemaker. Neither does negative angry such as give you a piece of my mind then say let’s eat dinner. It seems like a lot of work and time involved here. What is the fruit of this again? 😧 Is it worth the time? Oh, yes, those that are peacemakers shall be called a child of God. And, if I am not a peacemaker wonder whose child I am?
As you can see I am full of questions with few answers. I must say Dr Billy Graham seems to have understood this attitude of life.
Sara you commented, “…passivity doesn’t belong in the column of peacemaker”. Wuellner used some strong language on pg 114 when she stated, “When Jesus brings us to God’s shalom , we are not invited to passivity.” That sounded like a firmly closed door to me. Then she said, “We are challenged….to “all kinds of excitement”, to the adventures, the risk taking, of love”. She gets us straight fast in the second paragraph of her chapter when she says, “We think of peacemakers as people who don’t make waves, who calm others with soothing words. But that is not what Jesus meant….”
Debi, Wuellner got it right, I think when she said, “we think of peacemakers as people who don’t make waves, who calm others with soothing words…” I like her choice of words on pg 119, ” The person who brings God’s shalom becomes keenly aware of this dangerous cycle of emotional infection. At the very moment of assault by someone else’s projected pain, the shalom bringer will enter the forgiveness process, admitting the painful impact, asking for God’s help, trying to understand what may have hurt the assaulter, and then with the firm or intentionality make the choice not to pass the pain and anger onto the next person. Thus the distractive cycle is broken .” Having the training, as a nurse, it is somewhat easy to consider when a person may have a “physical infection” just by checking their vital signs, assessing one’s overall wellbeing. If I can just implement daily, what Wuellner is talking about here and be a “shalom bringer”, I can help stop the spread of this “emotional infection” like the strongest antibiotic would stop a physical infection.🙏
Tammy, I had to smile just a little thinking about a SHOT or maybe it’s a horse pill….I don’t like either yet I know it’s extremely necessary at times. What does a “shalom bringer” 🗡 look and feel like in this “emotional infection”…? I, personally think maybe one should work to stay healthy with some good vitamins 💊rather than need a nurse’s needle.💉
The thought that comes to me is to follow Billy Graham’s message…always make sure “”the cross of Jesus Christ” is preached in word and action. ✝️💟
I’d like to correct my sentence above…” I like her choice of words”….maybe I should say?? I like how she helps one gain understanding with her choice of words”.
Yes, Sara, Billy Graham was right… ” the cross of Jesus Christ is preached in word and action”. 🙏✝
I have been thinking about a couple of things you said above, Sara: “Neither does negative angry such as give you a piece of my mind then say let’s eat dinner.” and ,”if I am not a peacemaker wonder whose child I am?” To me this relates to something Wuellner wrote on pg 118 and 119. She gave an illustration of how someone choosing to engage in an angry quarrel (unhealed anger) in the morning can emotionally infect more than a hundred people by the evening more quickly than “they would have caught the flu”. She goes on to say that a peacemaker/child of God chooses and acts to break this destructive cycle.
Tozer (a favorite author of mine) states in one of his writings, “When Satan said, “I will,” he broke loose from his normal center, and the disease with which he has infected the human race is the disease of disobedience and revolt.”
Weullner’s illustration seems to have some bearing to this and both seem to speak to “wonder whose child I am?”
Debi, Shalom to you! ✡️ As I was reading this chapter on peacemaking I felt like I was on one of those carnival Ferris wheels. ☸️ Just going around and around. How to get off was my thought question? You have broken down what seemed like a hugh impossible task to some manageable thoughts. Just might be the traits of a good high school teacher. 👏🏻👏🏻👏🏻
So, our behavior may be a flu virus?. Debi quotes Wuellner above, “they would have caught the flu”. She goes on to say that a peacemaker/child of God chooses and acts to break this destructive cycle.”
I’m guessing this brings us to “whosoever will… “ and, an old spiritual, it’s me, it’s me Oh God standing in the need of …”
Sara, you wrote, “this brings us to “whosoever will…”. Hmm… Wuellner gives several illustrations in Ch 8 of the whosoever’s that willed . And I can honestly say some of these are new to my thinking, experiences and comfort level. But I want to remain open to learning. “Listening to God, to others, to ourselves; being willing to learn and change…” are practices she recommends from the 3rd Beatitude, Ch 4.
Regarding breaking the destructive cycle she says, “One of the deepest concerns of the shalom bringer is discovering ways to keep from passing the pain received to others or even more importantly, ways to pass the power of loving release to one another”(pg 118). She then goes on to give an example of one woman whose great grandfather was a child molester and whose behavior had affected the family destructively for decades. The woman felt guided to “enter into intercessory prayer for the whole family, including the great grandfather who had died some years earlier.” Her act produced a change in herself and “the communal body of her family.” Wuellner believes (pg. 123) that “intercession (and she says intercession “means an interlinking, a re-making of pairs that have been separated”) also affects those who have gone through the transition of death, helping them as they increasingly unfold within God.”
I agree Debi the way Wuellner writes opens my mind to new ways of thinking. Reading your thoughts and watching the Going Home funeral and other related activities this week of Billy Graham help me realize my thinking of things might have stalled somewhere along the way. When I heard ministeres from other nations and their expressions of now and forever more I thought where have I been living.
The same week I read the following in an Upper Room Devotion…
“WHOLENESS IS NOT a strategy to integrate the various elements of our lives into a manageable lifestyle. Wholeness is something different. Wholeness is a way of being.
Churches living in the past are not designed for wholeness. They are much more comfortable being an appointment on the calendar. Worship? Join us at 10:00 a.m. on Sunday. Fellowship? We have a great dinner on Wednesday nights. Prayer? The prayer group mets on Monday at 9:00 a.m. Helping others? We will stock the food pantry on Saturday at 12:00 noon, just before the ballgame.
The problem is, people don’t live that way anymore. A couple of months ago, we cut the cord on cable TV and replaced it with an antenna for local programming and Hulu for streaming TV shows and movies.
In just a few short months, the way we watch TV has been completely changed. We don’t wait for Black-ish or Shark Tank to come on, afraid that we will miss them if we don’t turn the TV on at the right time. Now we wait until after they air, and we stream them when we are ready to watch. …
Churches of the future will need to offer more than appointment-style ministries. They will need to create seamless face-to-face experiences that are enhanced by social media. What this looks like and the kind of staffing that will be needed is anyone’s guess. Beyond the mechanics of offering church, churches are now encountering a different mindset among boomers and younger generations.
Those churches that come across as anti-everything will be hard-pressed to minister to a group that has tried it all and is looking for some way to make sense of what they have been through. When boomers come through the doors of a church, they already know their “sins.” They know how they have fallen short. What they need is a loving place where they can begin to put their lives back together.”
– Craig Kennet Miller
From Boomer Spirituality: 7 Values for the Second Half of Life by Craig Kennet Miller.
I also heard about how much Graham studied, prayed and obeyed. Hum! Easy to see why God used him to change the landscape of Christianity. I’m struggling with a little paper back study book like it’s a 4 year college course or more. It is upsets my thinking I run to Starbucks. Maybe I should listen for Rev 3:20 and respond in kind
so I might have a teacher dining with me Starbucks or not. 🤨🤦♀️🙇♀️ I don’t think I ever liked schools very much. Did you?
As I sit to write this, there are two nineteen year old (boys) men sitting in jail. One in Florida for his murders of former class mates. the other in Michigan for the murder of his parents. President Putin unveiled greater weapons of mass destruction this week aimed at the United States. The purpose of the weapons was to bolster Russian power in the world. President Assad’s army continues to kill civilians in then Syria war: Residents flee Eastern Ghouta bombardment. The fighting since 18 February has left 650 people dead, more than 150 of them children.
Where are the peacemakers? Jesus said “And you will hear of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not troubled; for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet. For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom.”
Where then and what then is the role of a peacemaker on the earth today? As I have thought on this beatitude this week. Two things have struck me. One a peacemaker is an activist. The other is the peace-making to be done is not just peace of man with man and neighbor with neighbor. Not that these aren’t very important matters on the earth. The cry deep within most men and women is to live at peace. But the peace-making to be done is peace with God.
I must go back to my old friend Spurgeon to get the truth of what a peacemaker is:
“Specially he prayeth that the Spirit of God, who is the Spirit of peace, might rest upon the Church at all times, binding believers together in one, that they being one in Christ, the world may know that the Father hath sent his Son into the world, heralded as his mission was with an angelic song — “Glory to God in the highest, on earth peace, good will toward men.”
This truly is a great prayer to pray, that the church would be a place of peace. Rev. Spurgeon tells us:
“Now, ye who are the sons of peace, endeavor as instruments in his hands to make peace between God and men. For your children’s soul, let your earnest prayers go up to heaven. For the souls of all your acquaintance and kinsfolk let your supplications never cease. Pray for the salvation of your perishing fellow creatures. Thus will you be peacemakers. And when you have prayed, use all the means within your power. Preach, if God has given you the ability, preach with the Holy Ghost sent down from heaven — the reconciling word of life. Teach, if you cannot preach. Teach the Word. “Be instant in season and out of season.”
“Sow beside all waters;” for the gospel “speaketh better things than the blood of Abel,” and crieth peace to the sons of men. Write to your friends of Christ and if you cannot speak much, speak a little for him. But oh! make it the object of your life to win others for Christ. Never be satisfied with going to heaven alone.”
I like that he tells us to pray and he tells us to be active in seeking the peace of men with God. He does not let us go with praying but he tells us we must be going and doing if we are real peacemakers and real children of God.
“Let the nations be judged in Your sight.
Put them in fear, O Lord,
That the nations may know themselves to be but men.” Psalm 9:19&20 then maybe be peace.
“This truly is a great prayer to pray, that the church would be a place of peace. Rev. Spurgeon tells us:” see Jeepgary’s quote above….
Does the American Church still find prayer important? Does the church think peace is a church virtue? I just finished listening to the news and they were discussing the evangelical movement saying it is badly splintered beyond repair. How would Spurgeon’s prayer work in this divide?
Guess, looking back on history the fightings and factions were there but there were ones that stood in the gap and prevailed in prayer and preaching like Spurgeon, Graham and others and God’s church prevailed in truth. We surely need Hope to be peacemakers.
Reflecting on what Sara wrote above and Tammy echoed, “always make sure “”the cross of Jesus Christ” is preached in word and action. ✝💟” as well as comments from jeepgary on wars, etc and Sara on ‘fightings and factions’ I want to share something Wuellner wrote on pg 122, 123 which seems to relate.
She told an incident about speaking to a clergyman regarding “fragmenting conflict between him and other members of his ethnic group within his church and neighborhood.” There was lots of deep division and she asked him “Will you sit down and talk things through? (meaning w/ Christian members of his community). He answered, “No…Not at this point. I don’t feel we are ready for talking things over. I feel instead that we should celebrate the Eucharist together.” Wuellner said she learned something from this: “When fellow Christians are deeply divided on issues, if they can center around the risen Christ with prayer, both verbal and silent, and celebrate the Eucharist together, the living presence of the Christ brings healing answers far deeper than we had dreamed.”
Debi and Tammy, you both are great on digging out the greatest nuggets and they are golden. Thank you!
Wuellner on pg. 121 speaks of praise…”giving and receiving, (receiving praise is every bit as important as the giving and may take more practice.) begin to open a lock door within us, begin to melt a repressed core, begin to let loose new springs of life-giving water within us and among us. Praise opens us up.”
Online Bible studies are beyond interesting to me. I think it is a most profitable way to study. Yet, I’m finding many that join a group and add their voice for the larger part of the class find it not their thing to put their words in ✍️. Yet, when we have voices in writing we can study most often wherever we are, ask questions, comment and give thought to the points. And, most importantly when we share the points with others we don’t have to try and remember and give info we are guessing about but print out and share with others that might not have a device in their hands. We don’t have to compete in writing, one word from the heart💗 is as important as 100+ words written by one gifted with words. Just think for a moment of our whole of study,”forgiveness.” I read that many think the most important two words to be spoken, “I forgive.” Plus, a big bonus, new people can join at anytime and catch up at their leisure.
Now there are some draw backs, I have to make my own coffee,☕️ cookies🍪 and prioritize my time. I don’t have to dress in my best but I don’t get a dozen people telling me how nice I 👀🤗
I guess I could face time if that becomes important to me.
Therefore, I would like to invite those that are studying from our study book to go to pg 122 and read the first paragraph as a note from me joining with Jesus to give praise to you.👏🏻👏🏻👏🏻👏🏻