Will There Ever Be Worldwide Peace?

ONE OF LUDWIG VAN Beethoven’s most famous compositions is called Moonlight Sonata—a moving and melancholic piece. What a sad and bitter irony that the German air force in 1940 used this codename for the devastating bombing raid on the city of Coventry at the time of a full moon.

The targeted attack on the 14th November resulted in 554 recorded deaths (there were certainly more), many injured and the city centre badly damaged, including its medieval cathedral of St Michael’s.

It turned out to be the single most concentrated bombing raid on a British city in the Second World War.

When hostilities mercifully came to an end some five years later there was a concerted drive for reconciliation between the people of Coventry and those of German cities which suffered similar bombing by the British air force. By 1947 Coventry adopted Kiel as its first German twin city, followed by Dresden in 1956. The ruin of the old cathedral today stands as a focal point for international peace and reconciliation. Thankfully a good measure of peace has been achieved between the bitter enemies of the Second World War, but sadly brutal conflicts continue to rage around the globe. Solving these conflicts is a never-ending and hopeless task: in most cases no satisfactory solution can be found despite the efforts of the world’s political leaders.

The misery of war not only affects those involved in the military forces, but also innocent civilians—the mothers, the children, the sick, the elderly and the impoverished. So will there ever be worldwide peace, and how can it be achieved and sustained?

God Gives a Promise

In the Bible we learn that God has promised that there will be world peace. Yes, we will live in harmony! There are several places where we can read about God’s plan for the world. The prophet Micah for example describes this wonderful time:

It shall come to pass in the latter days that the mountain of the house of the Lord shall be established as the highest of the mountains, and it shall be lifted up above the hills; and peoples shall flow to it, and many nations shall come, and say: “Come, let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, to the house of the God of Jacob, that he may teach us his ways and that we may walk in his paths.” For out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem. He shall judge between many peoples, and shall decide for strong nations far away; and they shall beat their swords into ploughshares, and their spears into pruning-hooks; nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more; but they shall sit every man under his vine and under his fig tree, and no one shall make them afraid, for the mouth of the Lord of hosts has spoken (Micah 4:1–4).

The message is emphatic that the weapons of war will be turned into much needed implements of agriculture to provide food.

They will no longer exist to kill and maim. At long last peace under the righteous rule of the Lord Jesus will be a glorious reality.

A Righteous King to Rule

Describing the Lord Jesus, the prophet Isaiah says:

For to us a child is born, to us a son is given; and the government shall be upon his shoulder, and his name shall be called Wonderful Counsellor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the increase of his government and of peace there will be no end, on the throne of David and over his kingdom, to establish it and to uphold it with justice and with righteousness from this time forth and for evermore. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will do this (Isaiah 9:6–7).

As we read through the Gospels we learn of the Lord Jesus’ wonderful character. He always does God’s will and seeks the best for all his fellow men and women. He upholds truth and righteousness but is also a man of understanding, mercy and compassion. The prophet Isaiah describes his Godly and Kingly attributes this way:The Spirit of the Lord shall rest upon him, the Spirit of wisdom and understanding, the Spirit of counsel and might, the Spirit of knowledge and the fear of the Lord. And his delight shall be in the fear of the Lord. He shall not judge by what his eyes see, or decide disputes by what his ears hear, but with righteousness he shall judge the poor, and decide with equity for the meek of the earth; and he shall strike the earth with the rod of his mouth, and with the breath of his lips he shall kill the wicked. Righteousness shall be the belt of his waist, and faithfulness the belt of his loins (Isaiah 11:2–5).

The joy and peace of this worldwide kingdom is anticipated a number of times in the Psalms. The songwriters provide uplifting words for us, who live now in such troubling times. Consider for example the following two passages:

Say among the nations, “The Lord reigns! Yes, the world is established; it shall never be moved; he will judge the peoples with equity.” Let the heavens be glad, and let the earth rejoice; let the sea roar, and all that fills it; let the field exult, and everything in it! Then shall all the trees of the forest sing for joy before the Lord, for he comes, for he comes to judge the earth. He will judge the world in righteousness, and the peoples in his faithfulness (Psalm 96:10–13).

Let the nations be glad and sing for joy, for you judge the peoples with equity and guide the nations upon earth. Let the peoples praise you, O God; let all the peoples praise you! The earth has yielded its increase; God, our God, shall bless us. God shall bless us; let all the ends of the earth fear him!  (Psalm 67:4–7).

Our Peace With God

The Lord Jesus will come and establish God’s Kingdom, and bless this world with his righteousness and truth—of this we can have no doubt. The Bible speaks abundantly of these things. There will be worldwide peace. Today God is inviting us to prepare to live in this wonderful future age. We can seek peace with God now. Through accepting the Gospel call we can be disciples of the Lord Jesus and have our sins forgiven. We can learn day by day how to live a godly life. Our new path may be narrow and challenging, but through the grace of Christ the rewards will be great both for today and for tomorrow.

Moonlight Sonata is the name, regrettably, not only for a musical masterpiece but also for an act of brutal warfare. During that fearful night in Coventry the light of the moon brought carnage, but we can have light and life through our dark times by following the Lord Jesus. He said ‘I am the light of the world’ (John 8:12). With him there is enlightenment and life, even eternal life. In due course he shall bathe the whole world with the light of his truth. He will be the light of the world, and he will give lasting peace.

Jeff & Helen Sewell

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