“Let him turn away from evil and do good; Let him seek peace and pursue it.”
Let him seek peace
We come to the third “Let him” – “Let him seek peace.” Christians already have peace with God (Rom. 5:1) so we do not seek peace in that sense. Non-Christians should seek that kind of peace. Christians seek peace with people.
“Peace” is a well-ordered soul or a well-ordered relationship. In this context it means souls well ordered together. Christians can fellowship together even though they may differ about a lot of things.
Matthew uses “seek” of seeking the kingdom of God and His righteousness in the sense of striving after his kingdom:
6: 33 “But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you”
Here Christians are to attempt to attain the state or condition of peace with people. When people lay charges against us, we seek peace with them.
and pursue it
“Pursue” is to do something with intense effort and with definite purpose. This pursuing person moves quickly and energetically toward some objective. He strives toward peace with the idea of seeking eagerly after it. Romans uses this term literally of pursuing (as a calling) the things that make for peace: 14:19 “Therefore let us pursue the things which make for peace and the things by which one may edify another.”
Heb 12: 14 “Pursue peace with all people, and holiness, without which no one will see the Lord.”
PRINCIPLE: The mature Christian seeks to find a platform of peace even with his enemies.
APPLICATION: Are you in the midst of running battle with someone? Some Christians avoid other Christians. They can hardly speak to them in a civil way. If they can keep from it, they will not shake hands with them. They go out different doors of the church. This is not “loving life” and “good days.”
God wants us to be tenacious about peace. As a drill sergeant keeps after his men to accomplish their goals, keep going after peace until you win it. The world still has a problem with Sadam Hussein because the US did not “pursue” him till they defeated him. Is peace with people an objective for your life?
Romans 12: 18 “If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men.”