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Saturday, March 26, 2016

The Mixed Matrix of Peace

Upon what human institutions do people pin their hopes for “peace now”? What might Jeremiah say at one of their conferences? (Serendipity Bible Fourth Edition, page 1059.)

Overwhelmingly people look to government to bring about peace. Why? Because government to government accessibility and the sword of the state are seen as indispensable elements in the creation and implementation of enforced peace. We should not be too dejected when we consider that peace  must be enforced. Even on a community and local level there is a sense in which peace is always underwritten and enforced most immediately by the local police department – including extensively criminal and civil matters. The United States is remarkable for its peaceful transitions of power. Partly this is due to tradition, but significantly it is due to enforceable law. When the larger peace finally descends that we yearn for, it will of necessity be an enforced peace; which is simply recognizing that contention is deeply ingrained in human nature and human affairs.

Even though we depend extensively upon government for peace, we know full well that a strong government is insufficient to bring about peace. If all institutions besides government were to lose their way (the family, the church, the creative sector), then nothing that government could possibly do would prevent certain societal collapse. An indispensable constituent of peace has been stated with brevity: let peace begin with me.

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