PEACE SEEKERS AND SOWERS
"And the seed whose fruit is righteousness is sown in peace by those who make peace." Jas 3:18
The marginal reading of the Revised Version suggests the substitution of the word "by" for "for," and that would seem to be the real thought of the writer. He had been contrasting the wisdom from beneath with that from above as Solomon. The first produces jealousy, faction, confusion. The second is first pure and then peaceable. Now carefully observe that he says much more than that peace is the fruit of righteousness. That is true, and it had already been said in the declaration that heavenly wisdom is first pure, then peaceable. But here the thought is that of the propagation power of life according to heavenly wisdom. Righteousness bears fruit after its kind, and that is peace. When this is sown, still in peace, it produces righteousness again, wherein is the further fruit age; and so ever on. Those who make peace had been declared by the Lord to be blessed (born-again), as the sons of God. Here the blessedness is shown in its effect. The peacemakers are those who live by the heavenly wisdom, which is first pure and then peaceable, that is, by righteousness. These are the men who make peace. To compromise with wrong, to seek for quietness by the sacrifice of righteousness, is not to secure peace, but to make it impossible. On the other hand, to stand for righteousness, even though there must be conflict and suffering, is to sow the fruit where from peace will come. The ways of God are all severe, but they are the only ways of goodness. To do right at the cost of ease, is to make peace. To seek ease at the cost of righteousness is to make peace forever impossible.