Resurrection: Accepting the Consequences of God’s Greatest Act of Peacemaking

Resurrection: Accepting the Consequences of God’s Greatest Act of Peacemaking By David Edling, Senior Ministry Consultant (retired) for Peacemaker Ministries If you are familiar with Peacemaker Ministries’ materials, you know that “accept the consequences” is one of the Seven A’s of Confession. When we confess our sin completely, we show that our confession is sincere by taking responsibility for the harm we have caused. In other words, we willingly “accept the consequences.” Similarly, when we confess Christ as our Lord and Savior, we show that our profession of faith is sincere by accepting the consequences. But what does that really mean? As Easter approaches, I have been thinking about how accepting God’s gift of eternal life in Christ also means accepting the “consequence” that it was my sin that made Christ’s death on the cross necessary. Realizing this was, for me, the first step in recognizing my need for a Savior who could completely and effectively take responsibility for my sin and its harmful effects. The sacrifice for my sin could not be borne by me, but only by the One who knew no sin. Therefore, only Jesus Christ, the spotless Lamb, could be offered as an acceptable sacrifice, reconciling me with God the Father (see Revelation 5). This is the gospel—the good news that the consequences of my sins are paid for and forgiven in Christ, because he alone is worthy. All who have stopped trusting in their own worthless sacrifice and have placed their trust in Christ for eternal life know this to be true. But how often do we stop to think about the other consequence, the present consequence of...

Family/Marriage/Children

 Articles on Family/Marriage/Children   Resurrection: Accepting the Consequences of God’s Greatest Act of Peacemaking Family/Marriage/Children Why Christians Divorce Walking in Peace amid Holiday Strife The Myths of Divorce The High Cost of Conflict Among Christians The God We Can Trust The Effects of Divorce on America The Dangers of “Good” Advocacy The Cross and Criticism « Older Entries DVD Group Study Find Help Upcoming Events...

Why Christians Divorce

Why Christians DivorceWithout a doubt, the divorce rate today for Christians is alarmingly high. While there are many factors that contribute to this trend, Chuck Colson addresses one in particular in this short essay: the propensity to appeal to feelings as the highest authority. Chuck rightly describes this as a form of serving false gods—it is idolatry in its very essence. Viewing feelings as the authority only confuses and entraps those involved, distorting the truth and authority of Scripture as well as God’s true design for marriage. Therefore, I commend this article to you as another tool to use in gently helping others to truthfully face their struggles in marriage without turning to divorce.—Ken Sande Peacemaking Women With personal stories and advice firmly rooted in Scripture, this book offers hope for peace with God, peaceful relationships with others, and genuine peace within. $13.95 more info I still remember my sadness on hearing that an old friend and someone I believed was a sincere Christian, was leaving his wife of many years. I was shocked and disappointed. I wondered: How could this man, committed to both his spouse and his Lord, fall in love with another woman?An essay by the late Sheldon Vanauken helps answer the question and reminds us that such temptations are all too common. Vanauken, best known as the author of the powerful love story titled A Severe Mercy, also published a collection of essays called Under the Mercy, which explores these feelings. In one essay called “The Loves,” Vanauken describes how a Christian friend named John shocked him by announcing that he was leaving his wife to marry...

Walking in Peace amid Holiday Strife

Walking in Peace amid Holiday Strifeby Tara Klena Barthel Peacemaking Women With personal stories and advice firmly rooted in Scripture, this book offers hope for peace with God, peaceful relationships with others, and genuine peace within. $13.95 more info According to the catalogs and TV commercials, the holidays are supposed to be filled with joy, music, laughter, and love—happy people doing happy things. For many of us, however, the holiday season is often one of stress, grief, and conflict. Instead of “Thanksgiving gratitude” and “glad tidings of great joy,” we find ourselves miserable and angry over small matters (“Who spilled on the velvet tablecloth? Mrs. Critical will be here any moment—what will she think?”). And we catch ourselves pasting on a fake grin as we seethe over yet another sarcastic comment from a relative (“Oh, don’t be so sensitive! I was only kidding”).As we walk through the clamor of the holidays, our relationships may reflect a “peace” as weak and flimsy as a sheet of thin gift-wrapping paper from the dollar store. How can we get past the façade of fake holiday happiness and truly wrap this season in a blanket of grace, joy, and love? 1. Remember the Prince of Peace If we are to walk as people of peace during the stress of the holidays, we must first begin by remembering the greatness of God and all that he has done for us in Christ. Then we can move on to how we are to live in light of these truths. If we try to skip the first step and move to the changing of our behavior,...

The Myths of Divorce

The Myths of Divorceby Ken Sande, Founder of Peacemaker Ministries Peacemaking Women With personal stories and advice firmly rooted in Scripture, this book offers hope for peace with God, peaceful relationships with others, and genuine peace within. $13.95 more info Most of us would not consider ourselves to be gullible or naïve, yet Scripture often reminds us, “Do not be deceived.” (e.g., James 1:16, Gal. 6:7). In truth, we are easily deceived, and we so often latch on to a piece of “worldly wisdom” that sounds good to us and justifies our actions, even if it is not at all based on the truth of God’s word. Our very hearts fool us and hinder us from seeing situations clearly or accurately. Jeremiah 17:9 says, “The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure. Who can understand it?”In the same way, I have noticed over the years that Christians who are in the process of seeking a divorce often use same set of reasons to justify their decision to leave the marriage. I have heard the same excuses so often that I have wondered whether Satan has published a little booklet on how to justify a divorce. The excuses comprise what may be called a “popular divorce mythology.”1 While Christians disagree about what constitutes legitimate grounds for divorce, it is clear that many Christians divorce for all the wrong reasons. We need people around us to speak truth to us and help us see our own blind spots so that we are not fooled by worldly wisdom or by the blindness in our own hearts. Perhaps you can play...