Prayer for peace upon the Christians is so common in the New Testament that it is sometimes overlooked as a mere greeting. Here are some other examples:
Rom 15:13 May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.What are the various ways in which God brings peace?
2Peter 1:2 Grace and peace be yours in abundance through the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord
Jude 1:2 Mercy, peace and love be yours in abundance.
First of all He ends the hostility between us and Himself through the atoning work of His Son. This peace is in the form of a reconciled relationship.But what about peace with respect to the society around us?
This kind of peace also extends within the Christian community as forgiveness is practiced between Christians.
Along with the ending of hostility comes a peace of mind - a clear conscience, such as in
Joh 14:27 Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.
Praying itself brings peace as well, "Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus." Php 4:6,7
We first note that Jesus said:Therefore "If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone." Rom 12:18
Mt 10:34 Do not suppose that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I did not come to bring peace, but a sword.
Joh 16:33 I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.
And indeed Jesus himself along with his followers were treated with a great deal of hostility by the society.
But lest someone develop a paranoid martyr complex, it is also written:
Pr 16:7 When a man’s ways are pleasing to the LORD, he makes even his enemies live at peace with him.
Proverbs of course speaks of the general principle rather than specific instances. And such a principle we can see in Jesus' life and that of his followers. For though they were persecuted by the religiously zealous, yet they had a good reputation in the society. Even Jesus himself was declared to be an innocent man by the Roman official who reluctantly had him crucified.
And now I pray for you, the reader, that God may grant you a clear conscience in following Him so that you will have peace of mind. And may He grant that you be at peace with your fellow man both Christian and non-Christian alikeIf you notice significant effects to this end in the future, feel free to glorify God and let me know that I and others may be encouraged to pray further along these lines.