Sunday Recap for 01/29/17:  “Why is Personal Peace So Difficult?”

Sunday Recap for 01/29/17:  “Why is Personal Peace So Difficult?”

This past Sunday, we continued in our “Micah:  Heart of God” series”.  In our passage, we asked this Big Picture Question:

Big Picture Question:  Why is personal peace so difficult?

And we answered our Big Picture Question in this way:

Big Picture Question:  Why is personal peace so difficult?

  • Change is painful.
  • God’s wisdom is greater than ours.
  • Peace requires faith.

Our first answer came from Micah 4…

Change is painful.

Micah 4:8 And you, O tower of the flock, hill of the daughter of Zion, to you shall it come, the former dominion shall come, kingship for the daughter of Jerusalem.  9 Now why do you cry aloud?  Is there no king in you?  Has your counselor perished, that pain seized you like a woman in labor?  10 Writhe and groan, O daughter of Zion, like a woman in labor, for now you shall go out from the city and dwell in the open country; you shall go to Babylon.  There you shall be rescued; there the Lord will redeem you from the hand of your enemies. 

Israel was in the in-between time of God’s judgment.  In those in-between times is when we struggle the most with peace.  As Israel struggled with peace, they are recognizing that to draw near to God is going to required great change.  And they appear not to be ready.  So, God begins asking them how all the other things that they have trusted have turned out.

Their counselors?

Their priests?

Everything but God?  It has all turned out badly.

And their flirting has gotten them pregnant…but pregnant with judgment.  God is going to hand them over to the Babylonians.  Yet even, God will save them from their enemies ultimately.

Change is hard.  Our fighting it, robs us of peace.  God is gracious.

God’s wisdom is greater than ours.

11 Now many nations are assembled against you, saying, “Let her be defiled, and let our eyes gaze upon Zion.” 12 But they do not know the thoughts of the Lord; they do not understand his plan, that he has gathered them as sheaves to the threshing floor.  13 Arise and thresh, O daughter of Zion, for I will make your horn iron, and I will make your hoofs bronze; you shall beat in pieces many peoples; and shall devote their gain to the Lord, their wealth to the Lord of the whole earth.

God lays out a plan for His people that they could never imagine.  While they are being disciplined, while they are being taken captive, that is when God promises to deliver them as they never could have been imagined.  God promises to utterly defeat His people’s enemies.

Friends in our struggle with peace, we have to trust God’s wisdom.  His is greater than ours, but trusting it is the hard part.  Just as God did great things with His people in that time, He works no less mightily on your behalf.

Peace Requires Faith

5:1 Now muster your troops, O daughter of troops; siege is laid against us; with a rod they strike the judge of Israel on the cheek. 2  But you, O Bethlehem Ephrathah, who are too little to be among the clans of Judah, from you shall come forth for me One who is to be ruler in Israel whose coming forth is from of old, from ancient days.  3 Therefore he shall give them up until the time when she who is in labor has given birth; then the rest of his brothers shall return to the people of Israel.  4 And he shall stand and shepherd his flock in the strength of the Lord, in the majesty of the name of the Lord his God.  And they shall dwell secure, for now he shall be great to the ends of the earth.  5 And he shall be their peace

God promises a great shepherd, Jesus Christ, to ultimately come to rescue His people, and from all places, God is going to bring Him from Bethlehem, an inconsequential city.  Friends, the peace that God promised here requires great faith.  And the Savior, Jesus, is your peace.

Big Picture Question:  Why is personal peace so difficult?

Truth:  Faith in the security of God’s wisdom during changing times gives us personal peace.

Application:  Live knowing that we must constantly seek peace by having faith in God’s wisdom.

Action:  Take a step of faith this week that forces you to trust God more than trusting yourself.

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