Paul said in Romans 12:18, “If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men.” While Paul surely meant to convey the idea of being at peace with others, it seems that there is more to it than that. Notice the phrase that he used: “live peaceably.” One Psalmist said, “…seek peace and pursue it” (Psalm 34:14). Living peaceably denotes an active pursuit of peace. We need to be people who seek peace.
Many times I’ve read Romans 12:18 and concentrated on the first half of the verse – “If it is possible, as much as depends on you.” Yes, there are some people with whom it is impossible to live in peace, but that does not give us a license to neglect our peace-making responsibility. We should avoid any action that would jeopardize peacefulness such as speaking evil and lies about another (I Peter ). We should never be the source of dispute or quarreling, but this still does not mean that we will not be the objects of persecution.
“Yes, and all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution” (II Timothy ). It is a certainty that the righteous will be afflicted, yet we must still pursue peace. Jesus said, “But I tell you not to resist an evil person. But whoever slaps you on your right cheek, turn the other to him also. If anyone wants to sue you and take away your tunic, let him have your cloak also” (Matthew -40). Often it is no easy task to maintain accord with others, but our Lord requires that we do all that we can.
The prophet Zechariah said, “Love the truth and peace” (Zechariah ). To maintain peace in one’s life, he or she must love peace. As Christians, are we showing the world our love for God’s peace? Do you promote peace among your classmates, your co-workers, and your family? Do you strive to keep peace in the body of Christ? “And if it be possible, as much as lieth in you, live peaceably.” “Though it be but barely possible, labour after it.” (Adam Clarke’s Commentary.)