“Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you. Not as the world gives, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.” John 14:27.
Christ’s last legacy to His people.
We find Him saying, “Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you. Not as the world gives, give I unto you.” Peace is Christ’s peculiar gift to His people. He seldom gives them money, worldly ease, or temporal prosperity. These are best very questionable possessions. They often do more harm than good to the soul. They act as clogs and weights to our spiritual life. Inward peace of conscience, arising from a sense of pardoned sin and reconciliation with God, is a far greater blessing. This peace is the inheritance of all believers, whether high or low, rich or poor.
The peace which Christ gives He calls ‘my peace’. It is specially His own to give, because He bought it by His own blood, purchased it by His own substitution and is appointed by the Father to dispense it to a perishing world. Just as Joseph was sealed and commissioned to give corn to the starving Egyptians, so is Christ specially sealed and commissioned, in the counsels of the eternal trinity, to give peace to mankind (John 6:27).
The peace that Christ gives is not given as the world gives. What He gives the world cannot give at all, and what He gives is given neither unwillingly, nor unsparingly, nor for a little time. Christ is far more willing to give than man is to receive. What He gives He gives to all eternity, and never takes away. He is ready to give abundantly ‘above all that we ask or think’. ‘Open thy mouth wide’, He says, ‘and I will fill it’. (Eph 3:20 and Psalm 81:10).
Who can wonder that a legacy like this can be backed up by the renewed emphatic charge, ‘Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.’? There is nothing lacking on Christ’s part for our comfort, if we will only come to Him, believe and receive. The chief of sinners has no cause to be afraid. If we will only look by faith to the one true Savior, there is medicine for every trouble of heart. Half our doubts and fears arise from dim perceptions of the real nature of Christ’s gospel.
Written by Bishop J.C. Ryle.