In understanding how the goal of anxiety is death, we need to know how to control our anxiety, as a Christian. This does not mean people cannot also use therapy or medication for anxiety; there is nothing in the Bible that says these things are wrong. But we shouldn’t be content with only therapy and medication. We still need more than that, especially on a spiritual basis. I’m also not saying we won’t have seasons of struggling with anxiety. Rather, I want to share how the peace of God can help us in all situations.
The past few weeks I’ve been sharing a study on anxiety.
What is it?
How can anxiety harm us?
What is the ultimate goal?
Did Christ experience anxiety?
Is anxiety sinful on its own?
What does it mean to have a crushed spirit?
How can God use a crushed spirit?
What is the significance between a crushed spirit and Jesus?
All of these questions have been covered. If you would like to check out any of the previous posts you can here:
–Anxiety Crushes Our Spirit & Affects How We Love God
–Anxiety’s End Goal Is Death | Is Anxiety Sinful?
–How Can God Save The Crushed In Spirit?
Anxiety is all about uncertainty. It’s quite an unsettling feeling. The opposite of anxiety would be contentment, self-control and peace. Both self-control and peace are part of the fruit of the Holy Spirit. Love, joy, peace, self-control, patience, faithfulness, kindness, goodness, and gentleness – this is the fruit (not fruits) of the Spirit. (Galatians 5:22-23) The fruit of the Spirit is produced from having a relationship with the Lord, Jesus. (Please see: Why Did A Loving God Kill His Son? (Does God Hate?) for an in-depth breakdown of the Gospel message.)
Scripture directs us to have a relationship with Jesus. As we will see, Christ is key. Christ is essential. It is only through Jesus can we receive the Holy Spirit, Who then minsters the truth of Christ, continues to convict us of sin, and continues to transform us spiritually that leads to outward fruit. Putting our faith in Jesus’ death and resurrection, in the power of His blood being the atonement sacrifice and paying off our debt of sin to God is required in order to understand the peace of God.
(ESV) Philippians 4:06-07, “do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
(ESV) 1 Peter 5:06-07, “Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you, Cast all your anxiety on Him, because He cares for you.”
Is The Peace of God Just A Feeling?
In preparing for this post, I read a lot of scripture. During this study, I’ve been feeling condemned and struggling with my own thoughts. I thought I was a hypocrite for attempting to even write such a post on experiencing the peace of God… when I didn’t feel like I was.
However, something has constantly stood out. The peace of God is not just ”an experience” and the peace of God is not just “a feeling.” While the peace of God can relate to having an experience of feeling peace or calmness, it is not limited to solely an experience of feeling. Why? Because if the peace of God ONLY related to an experience of feeling calm, well, we can understand that (to a degree). But, as I highlighted, the peace of God SURPASSES all understanding, which means there are parts of the peace of God we will not be able to understand.
And if the peace of God surpasses all understanding, I don’t think the peace of God is limited to just a feeling or experience. Of course, there could be experiences and feelings of calmness related to God we can’t explain. Christians before being martyred sometimes showed amazing peace right before their deaths. I think a feeling of peace is possible, and I believe there is a lot more to the peace of God, as well.
In both the scriptures shared above, Philippians and 1 Peter we see that the peace of God is connected to Jesus Christ. The peace of God is not about how WE feel, but rather, the peace of God is about strengthening our trust and walk in Jesus Christ. The peace of God is to help us DESPITE what we might feel and DESPITE what we might think, according to the flesh.
Purpose of the Peace of God During Trials
Remember those Christians who experienced amazing peace right before their horrific deaths? Their eyes were focused on Christ solely, not the tribulation and not the pain. Instead, they trusted Jesus and they were willing to go through trials, giving Him the glory! They felt honored to go through trials, to experience what Christ experienced. They didn’t want to be spared from pain, but rather, they found their comfort in Christ because of the pain.
The peace of God does not change our trials into ease. But the peace of God can help strengthen our relationship with Christ as we go through trials. The peace of God can help us walk in the way of the Spirit instead of walking in the way of the flesh.
(ESV) Philippians 4:13, “I can do all things through him who strengthens me.”
(ESV) Romans 8:05-06, “For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit set their minds on the things of the Spirit. For to set the mind on the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace.”
As the previous posts have shown, anxiety’s end-goal is death. Anxiety is produced from the flesh. But peace is from the Spirit.
Notice how peace is associated with having a mind set on the Spirit. It’s important to remember that the role of the Holy Spirit is to point to sin, righteousness, the judgment to come. The Holy Spirit reminds people of the teachings of Jesus Christ. So, having a mind on the Spirit, also means we have our mind set on Christ.
I’m going to stop the post right here and continue on next week, as we’ve already hit over 1k words. I hope you have been enjoying this little series. I’ve learned a lot!
- What Is The Gospel – To learn more about what Jesus did on the cross and why His atonement sacrifice is so needed please see: Why Did A Loving God Kill His Son? (Does God Hate?)
- If you think you know the Gospel, check out these questions and see how prepared you are for the day someone might ask you why you believe: The Gospel Challenge (30 Question Quiz) – Are You Ready To Defend Your Faith?
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