Wednesday, 28 June 2017

Swords into ploughshares

And he shall judge among the nations,
and shall rebuke many people:
and they shall beat their swords into ploughshares,
and their spears into pruninghooks:
nation shall not lift up sword against nation,
neither shall they learn war any more.  - Isaiah 2.4

In 1959, at the very centre of the Cold War, the Soviet Union gifted the UN with the iconic image of a man beating a sword onto the cutting edge of a plough. The image is not only iconic, but also ironic since the USSR at that moment was on the verge of a potentially cataclysmic war against the US.

But still, the image and the notion was a good one. That war never came. Despite the hard talk and the rhetoric and a few near misses somehow that war was avoided.

Sadly though the image hopes for an impossibility. Man’s wars have continues to rage since 1959. We just can’t seem to get along despite of laudable goal of turning our weapons of war in to tools for peace and the betterment of mankind.

We can’t do it because man is always going to want what is best for himself. Nations want to take care of themselves and the cost to others really doesn’t matter. The goal is noble and man should all he can to achieve it. But, at the end of the day man’s peace will always fail.

That’s the context of this verse. Despite man’s conflict and despite the raging battle and all that the day is coming when God will send His Son back to earth to put an end to all war. The day is coming when He will reign and war will be no more.

That is only possible when man’s broken relationship with God is restored. That’s what the angel’s meant when the promised ‘peace on earth’ and that’s what Jesus meant when He said ‘My peace I leave with you.’

So lets take great hope in the image of swords being beaten into ploughshares. We have a great and mighty God who is going to bring it to pass and let us put our trust in Him to see it accomplished. 

And lets be busy bringing the message of His peace to a world that surely needs it. 

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