“Put Your Sword Back”
We thank you, O God, that you sent your Son Jesus into this war-torn and conflict-riddled world to be the Prince of Peace.
We thank you that the angel who announced his birth to the shepherds spoke of “peace, good will toward men” (KJV).
We thank you that he, until the very end, responded to fear with faith, to anger with grace, to hate with love, and to conflict with peace.
We thank you that he, although he had a more powerful sword available to him than we could even begin to imagine, kept it sheathed.
Help us, O God, as followers of the Prince of Peace, to keep our pitiful swords put away, too, and instead to use his arsenal of faith, grace, love, and peace.
“Suddenly, one of those with Jesus put his hand on his sword, drew it, and struck the slave of the high priest, cutting off his ear. Then Jesus said to him, ‘Put your sword back into its place; for all who take the sword will perish by the sword. Do you think that I cannot appeal to my Father, and he will at once send me more than twelve legions of angels? But how then would the scriptures be fulfilled, which say it must happen in this way?’ At that hour Jesus said to the crowds, ‘Have you come out with swords and clubs to arrest me as though I were a bandit? Day after day I sat in the temple teaching, and you did not arrest me. But all this has taken place, so that the scriptures of the prophets may be fulfilled.’ Then all the disciples deserted him and fled.” (Matthew 26:51-56)