The First Condition for Peace
“Don’t worry over anything whatever…” (Philippians 4:6)
In the fourth chapter of his letter to the Philippians, the Apostle Paul prescribed twelve conditions for what the Bible calls “the peace of God.” Those who have the Holy Spirit living in them must meet these twelve conditions if they want to live in this continuous state of peace. If you profess to be a follower of Christ and you don’t have this peace, if you didn’t know it’s based on conditions, is it really any wonder that you don’t have this peace?
The first of these conditions is: don’t worry. Paul doesn’t begin his conditions for peace this way because there is nothing to worry about. He prescribes this because worry is not productive. In fact, worry is counterproductive. Worry saps from us the spiritual, mental, emotional and physical strength we need to cope with our problems. If you examine this peace prescription of Paul carefully, you will discover that he tells us to replace our worry with something that is productive.
I once saw a sign that asked “Why Pray When You Can Worry?” I had hitch-hiked from the East to the West Coast of America to transfer to a Christian college in California and I had $23.00 in my pocket. The godly old man who showed me the sign ran the employment office for the college and I desperately needed a job. He saw the worry in my face, pointed to the sign and asked me “Which one is it going to be, son?”
In his peace prescription Paul shows us how all of us must answer that question.