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A Restless Spirit

What is Christian peace? Find peace now.

by Andrew Davis on February 09, 2021

“When an evil spirit comes out of a man, it goes through arid places seeking rest and does not find it.” - Matthew 12:43

“‘There is no peace,’ says my God, ‘for the wicked.’” - Isaiah 57:21

It is impossible to measure the infinite distance between the peace of heaven and the strife of earth. In heaven, there is perfect unity of thought and mind, all beings totally focused with one accord on the glory of God and the unfolding of His majestic plan. This is a perfect reflection of the unity within the godhead itself, as Father, Son and Spirit constantly agree perfectly with one another, without the slightest hint or shifting shadow of dissent. Not so, with the wicked! Satan rebelled against his Creator and thus departed from the peace that he had known. He led astray a large number of spiritual beings who became demons and who have never known a moment’s peace since that time of their rebellion. And they never will, for they are condemned to an existence of “roaming the earth and going back and forth in it” (Job 1:7) for the rest of history, at the end of which they will be cast into eternal fire (Matt. 25:41). In the same way, according to the prophet Isaiah, the wicked (i.e. anyone not reconciled to God through faith in Christ) are “like the tossing sea which cannot rest, whose waves cast up mire and mud” (Isa. 57:20). This makes perfect sense, for they are acting like their father, the devil (John 8:44), and they will never know peace while they continue in his dominion of darkness.

St. Augustine put this restlessness in proper perspective in his masterpiece of a conversion testimony which he called his Confessions. Speaking directly to God, Augustine wrote: “You have made us for yourself, O God, and the heart of man is restless until it finds its rest in you.” True peace can only be known in a right relationship with God through His Son, Jesus Christ. The most precious gift ever given us is “peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ” (Rom. 5:1). Even though Christians may know all this, however, I fear we do not experience this peace regularly by active obedience and fellowship with God through the Holy Spirit. We forget the “harassing” influence of the demonic kingdom around us (Matt. 9:36), and we don’t stay filled with the Spirit, a filling which inevitably produces the fruit of peace (Gal. 5:22). Satan uses external circumstances and temptations to dupe us into forfeiting our experience of peace by getting us into sinful patterns… anxiety, covetousness, anger, lust—any of them will do just fine to destroy peace. 


"In heaven, there is perfect unity of thought and mind, all beings totally focused with one accord on the glory of God and the unfolding of His majestic plan."


Now comes the time for healing and for rest for you, my Christian reader. Stop a moment and ask yourself if you are characterized by a restless spirit. If so, ask God to show you if you have been absorbed by worldly matters that have led you into sin patterns. Confess these to the Lord and ask Him to fill you anew with His Holy Spirit. Then, obey the joyful command given by Paul, “Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace” (Col. 3:15). This means to let Christ’s peace rule over your thought life. Anything which leads you to imitate a “restless spirit” wandering around seeking worldly pursuits, immediately forsake in the name of Christ’s peace. Stay in fellowship with the “God of peace” (Rom. 15:33; 2 Cor. 13:11; Phil. 4:9; 1 Thess. 5:23; Heb. 13:20) and never be restless in spirit again, like your former master: “The God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet” (Rom 16:20). “Now may the Lord of peace himself give you peace at all times and in every way” (2 Thess. 3:16).

Tags: spiritual warfare, fruit of the spirit

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