Who’s in Charge Here?

Colossians 3: 15      Amplified

Let the peace of Christ [the inner calm of one who walks daily with Him] be the controlling factor in your hearts [deciding and settling questions that arise]. To this peace indeed you were called as members in one body [of believers]. And be thankful [to God always].

This is good advice, isn’t it? You may sometimes hear, “Let peace guide you.” In this verse, Paul teaches us that peace should be the controlling or ruling principle in all our ways and decisions. That certainly has implications for personal decisions when we don’t have that calm assurance inside. Clearly, we want to stay away from those choices. God often guides us by peace so we have learned that if we don’t feel peace about something, we best leave it alone.

The real substance of this verse, though, is about our interrelations with others. Paul says to let peace guide your thoughts and decisions as it relates to other people. When you have a decision to make which affects others, as most decisions do, you should not only consider but give first priority to the decision which promotes peace among you. Perhaps that is not the choice you would select but that is why Paul felt it necessary to teach this. As much as it depends on you, stay in peace with everyone (Romans 12: 18). There are times when there is a cost to you for peace, but the long-term benefit outweighs the short-term desire or inconvenience. Besides, it is what God has told us to do. Isn’t that reason enough?

There is another way to apply this verse. Paul points out that all believers are part of one body. God didn’t call us into service as just a hand or just a toe but rather as one body all working in harmony to His service. That necessarily means that He didn’t call us into a body of Baptists, or a body of Methodists, or any other denomination you can name. In truth, He hasn’t separated us even into Catholics and protestants. And for the real kicker, Jesus is Jewish, so we are of one body with Messianic Jews. There you are! What a family! One body made of such different parts yet called and commanded to work together for the accomplishment of the master’s purposes.

Jesus is the head and we all parts of his body. Since when did the pinky finger start telling the feet where to go? That just ends in chaos and chaos is what we have been experiencing in the church, but we are coming to the end of all things and our Father, He who is Father to every one of us, has called us into unity. You don’t have to agree with me all the time nor do you have to agree with anyone 100% of the time. We do, however, have to work together in the unity of peace in Christ and if we truly are in Christ then we are members of his peace too which he left here specifically for our use.

Jesus doesn’t really care if you don’t agree with the doctrine of that church down the block. He didn’t tell us that we must agree all the time, but he did command us to live and work together harmoniously. He requires our decisions to consider what will preserve and even increase the peace amongst us all. There is one thing upon which we all agree: Jesus is Lord. And that is enough. One church, one body, in Christ.