I. Peace not yet — Looking for peace and finding chaos
A. What is peace?
B. Not yet then
C. Not yet now
D. Proclaiming peace brings division.(Matthew 10:34-36)
II. Peace already
A. Peace was promised.(Isaiah 9:1, 6-7; 32:15-18; 57:18-19)
B. Jesus declared peace.(Luke 24:36; John 20:19, 21, 26)
C. Peace was Jesus' parting gift.(John 14:26-27)
III. How do we live in peace in a chaotic world?
A. Receive Christ's peace by abiding in Him.(John 14:27; 16:33)
B. Know God's peace in the life of the Spirit.(Galatians 5:22)
C. Find peace in praising God in the midst of chaos.(Luke 2:10-15)
D. Find peace in prayer.(Philippians 4:6-7)
E. Figure out what not to focus on.(Philippians 4:8)
1) Of all the things going on in the world right now, which ones cause you the greatest concern? Why? Is peace a pipe dream?
2) What does peace mean to you? Do you see that peace? What keeps us from experiencing God's peace today?
3) Does proclaiming peace cause division? Why should the message of peace divide people? What did Jesus mean when he said, "Do not think that I came to bring peace" (Matthew 10:34)?
Is peace attractive? If so, why do people resist peace? Have you ever met someone who wasn't happy unless they had something to be unhappy about? Why does that happen?
4) Why does God's word warn us about false declarations of peace? (e.g., Jeremiah 6:14) What is dangerous about declaring that there is peace when there really isn't? Does proclaiming peace in our chaotic world amount to the same thing?
5) Is praising God in the storm brave or crazy, or something in between? What is the danger of only praising God when you feel like it? Is it disingenuous to proclaim peace even as you seek it?
6) Have you ever thought about having Jesus' peace? Can you share peace? Why does Jesus call it "my peace" (John 14:27)? What is the connection between the life of the Spirit and peace?
7) Does your prayer life tangibly reduce your anxiety level? What is the connection between prayer and peace? Can you know the peace of God through prayer?
What has your experience been?