What is it that people are seeking most in life once their basic physical needs are satisfied? Some say they are seeking “freedom.” Movements for national liberation are usually based on this intense human desire. But Americans are free. Yet most of us are as restless and discontented (perhaps even more so) as those living under strongly oppressive regimes. Is it wealth we are seeking? One of the richest men in the world once said, “I thought money could buy happiness. I have been miserably disillusioned.” Others seek fulfillment through education, fame, sex, or power, but most are discontented even when they attain such goals. What is the reason? The explanation is that what people are really seeking is peace, and the ultimate and only genuine peace is found in a right relationship with God.

God offered the blessing of peace to Israel; Isaiah tells us that it was the “chastisement [of Christ] that brought us peace” (Is.53.5). He also tells us that “the effect of righteousness will be peace” (Is.32.17).

Augustine, expressed it well when he wrote in his Confessions, “You made us for yourself, and our hearts find no peace until they rest in you.”

If you are restless and seeking peace, the verse that begins the fifth chapter of Paul’s letter to the Romans is addressed to you. For here Paul speaks of peace and tells how it may be found: “Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.”

Romans 5 is not referring to the “peace of God,” but to “peace with God.” The idea here is not that we are upset and therefore need to become trusting and more tranquil, but rather that we have been at war with God and He with us, because of our sin, and that peace has nevertheless been provided for us by God – if we have been justified through faith in Jesus Christ.

The Son bore the Father’s wrath in our place. He died for us, and we receive the benefits of His atonement by believing on Him and in what He has done. But where does this lead? Obviously to peace with God! Since we have been justified by faith, the cause of the warfare between ourselves and God has been removed, and peace is the result. We therefore have peace with God through the Lord Jesus Christ.

Peace has been provided from God’s side, for He has removed the cause of the enmity through Jesus’ death. Peace has been received on our side, for we have “believed God” and have found the righteousness of the Lord Jesus Christ to be credited to us by God as our righteousness.

One pastor summarized Romans 5.1 by saying: “Every soul has been at war with God, and therefore every soul must have peace with God through cessation of the hostilities which exist between the individual and the Creator. How is the warfare to be brought to an end?… God has made peace, and no other peace can be made except that which He has already made.… If you come in unconditional surrender, you will find Him all peace toward you.”


(mar-uh-nath-uh – “Our Lord Comes”) Pastor Steve can be reached at PastorSteve@MaranathaBibleChurch.org