But wisdom from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, reasonable, full of mercy and good fruits, unwavering, without hypocrisy. James 3:17

Peaceable – OK, let’s think about this.  “Peaceable?”  We live in a world of greater and greater threat and conflict.  In case you weren’t paying attention, tensions around the globe are escalating as the world’s political and economic realms shrink.  It seems as though the same thing is happening on the individual and relationship front.  More and more stress.  Less and less peace.  Wasn’t it the Beatles who said, “You know I’d give you everything I’ve got for a little peace of mind?”

James is Hebrew.  His name is really Ya’aqov.  When he writes about peace, he isn’t thinking eirene, the Greek word for the “absence of war.”  He is thinking shalom, a state of complete well-being, principally because of a right-relationship with YHWH.  Ya’aqov’s readers would probably think the same thing since they are part of the Jewish Messianic fellowship.  Shalom is what we want and what we need.  It’s not just the absence of conflict, a Greek idea that assumes the natural state of man is war.  It’s the hope of universal Sabbath, the rest that the world longs to embrace as the fulfillment of the creative order.

Now that we know the goal, on this last day of the solar year, we might reflect once more on the Beatles’ song, “I’m so tired.”

“I’m so tired my mind is on the blink.”

“I’m so tired I don’t know what to do.”

“I wonder should I call you but I know what you would do.”

And so it goes.  “Give you everything I’ve got for a little peace of mind.”

Will you rest in the coming year?  Will you stop pushing to exhaustion in order to meet the incessant demands of a world that only knows extraction?  Will you turn to the Sabbath because you desperately need it?  Or will you sing the slow suicidal melody “I’m so tired.”

The Hebrew consciousness is informed with a certain relaxed sense of purpose.  Why?  Because it all doesn’t depend on me!  God’s hand moves invisibly through the lives of men, and as long as it does, I am finally not fully responsible for the outcomes of my efforts.  I can trust in a universe that conspires with me to bring about His good purposes.  I can rest in knowing His plans cannot be thwarted.  Tired?  Yes, of course I’m tired.  I work hard.  But “so tired?”  No, I have the promise of a day of rest in every seven, a day to remember that this world is not mine, it is only mine to enjoy.

Topical Index:  tired, peace, eirene, war, stress, Beatles, James 3:17

  • carl roberts December 31, 2010 at 7:24 am

    Yes, we will turn, but we will turn to the LORD of the Sabbath rest, for there is a rest that remains unto the people of G-d. This is the rest we are looking for,- a dwelling place, a place of safety, of security and of succour- all found within the finished word of our Savior, the LORD Jesus (who is the) Christ. “In Christ we trust.” It is through our abiding in Him and resting in His finished work on Calvary’s tree we find the enduring Sabbath rest by placing our full reliance on what He has done. Salvation is not spelled “do”- it is spelled “done.” Jesus paid it all- all to Him I owe. It is work of Christ and it is His work- alone. “In repentance and rest is your salvation” (Isaiah 30.15). Want rest? Repent. Find in Him your “all-in-all.” “This is the LORD’s doings and it is marvelous in our eyes.”
    The purpose of the law?- to lead us to crucified (and resurrected!) Christ, again and again, day by day, moment by moment,-“looking unto Yeshua,” the Author and the Finisher (completer) of our faith. What are we trusting in for salvation/deliverance?) (Is it a what, or is it a Who?) What weight do we give to the words of ADONAI?
    These are His words and this is His book-from Genesis to maps- every word of G-d is pure. All of them. Every one. Hebrew and Greek. Not either/or- “both.” All. Every.
    Yes, Jesus was (and still is) a Jew. We (goys) are adopted into the covenant blessings of Abraham, Moses and David- all of them- by the new covenant (brought to you by)- the shed blood of Yeshua Hamashiach- Jesus (who is the) Christ, our ADONAI. Our Savior, Strength, Succour and Song. -“It is the LORD.” “Marvelous are thy works, and that my soul knoweth right well!” (Psalm 139.14)
    Peace is “both” eirene and shalom. Amazingly,we (now) have the very peace of Yeshua. “My peace I give unto you.” (John 14.27) This from the mouth of our Messiah, who is also our Mediator and Master/Teacher.

    There’s a line that is drawn through the ages
    On that line stands an old rugged cross
    On that cross, a battle is raging
    For the gain of man’s soul or it’s loss.

    On one side, march the forces of evil
    All the demons, all the devils of hell
    On the other, the angels of glory
    And they meet on Golgotha’s hill.

    The earth shakes with the force of the conflict
    And the sun refuses to shine
    -For there hangs God’s Son, in the balance
    And then through the darkness He cries:

    It is finished, the battle is over
    It is finished, there’ll be no more war

    It is finished, the end of the conflict
    It is finished and Jesus is LORD.

    Yet in my heart, the battle was still raging
    Not all prisoners of war had come home
    These were battlefields of my own making
    I didn’t know that the war had been won.

    Oh, but then I heard that the King of the ages
    Had fought all the battles for me
    And that victory was mine for the claiming
    And now praise His name, I am free.

    What happened at Calvary? – the death of Death. And more!..- so “much more”.. “He that spared not His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him- also freely give us all things?” (Romans 8:32)

    Tetalesti (in Greek)- “paid in full”- in any language. -My sins are gone, I’ve been set free- my G-d, my Savior has ransomed me- and like a flood- His mercy reigns, -unending love, amazing grace..

    “Study this Book of Instruction continually. Meditate on it day and night so you will be sure to obey everything written in it. Only then will you prosper and succeed in all you do.”- (Joshua 1.8) “But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves.” (James 1.22) “Those things, which ye have both learned, and received, and heard, and seen in me, DO: and the G-d of peace shall be with you.” (Philippians 4.9)

  • Michael January 2, 2011 at 12:01 am

    James 3:1 Only a few of you, my brothers, should be teachers, bearing in mind that those of us who teach can expect a stricter judgement.”

    Hi Skip,

    I’m not that familiar with James, but I find the point above very interesting.

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