• Bishop Keith Butler

To the saints and faithful brethren in Christ which are at Colosse: Grace be unto you, and peace, from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. (Colossians 1:2)

Paul loved to begin his letters with two specific words encouraging the saints: Grace and peace. Grace is the word charis in Greek, and it has many different meanings. In the Old Testament, it usually meant favor, but there are over 20 different expressions of grace in the Bible; all of them are connected to the ministry of the Holy Spirit towards us. Grace can mean benefits, to be covered over, the works of God, thanksgiving to God, and many other things. One of the expressions of grace is one of my favorite Greek words: eirene. It means peace, wholeness, and quietness.

Why then would Paul say peace immediately after grace? Wouldn’t that be redundant? The problem is that we only have one word for peace in English. Many Christians don’t understand what God means by peace. Everyone wants peace, but since many don’t know what God means by peace, they’ve been trying to get it the wrong way.

The world thinks that peace is when you are at a quiet spot with no noise around you; it’s the feeling after the children are finally asleep; it’s when nothing is happening around you. However, that’s not God’s version of peace.

Paul understood that God's peace was more appropriately understood with the Hebrew word shalom - meaning nothing missing and nothing broken.

Nothing missing means you have everything that you need to have to do anything that you need to do. Nothing broken means you can fix anything that tries to act up in a way that is not according to God's will.

Jesus called us peacemakers. We don’t look for peace; we use God's peace through the Holy Spirit's ministry to change things in this world.

Practical Application – When you find yourself in situations that are not according to God’s will, begin to declare peace. You have the authority and the Holy Spirit within you to cause change.

Romans 1:7; 1 Corinthians 1:3

  • Bishop Keith Butler

For we are labourers together with God: ye are God's husbandry, ye are God's building. According to the grace of God which is given unto me, as a wise masterbuilder, I have laid the foundation, and another buildeth thereon. But let every man take heed how he buildeth thereupon. (1 Corinthians 3:9-10)

One person doesn't build most buildings. It takes a team of workers who band together to finish significant buildings.

Here in 1 Corinthians 3:9-10, Paul wrote that we are builders with God, together working on a great task. God does His part, and He asks us to do ours.

Paul also wrote that he was a builder, according to the grace of God. The phrase according to is kata, and it means after the manner of something. Paul stated that his building ability didn’t come from natural skill or experience, but that God Himself, the greatest architect in the world, deposited His strength and wisdom into Paul to make him a master-builder.

Paul walked in the ministry calling of an apostle. That meant his job was to build churches and ministries from the ground up. An apostle needs to look at a clump of dirt and see the potential of what it can become. They can visualize what God wants to do. But that architect doesn’t build a building by himself either. He needs plumbers and electricians and roofers and carpenters.

God puts a visionary in a church first, an apostle, but quickly fills the church with all manner of other skilled individuals to help build what God has planned to do in that house. We all have specific assignments, but we are all needed to build what God plans.

Practical Application – Find someone who volunteers at your church in a different capacity than you do and thank them for their contribution to the body. Remind yourself that every member of the body has an essential role in God’s house.

Matthew 16:18; Luke 14:28

  • Bishop Keith Butler

So then neither is he that planteth any thing, neither he that watereth; but God that giveth the increase. Now he that planteth and he that watereth are one: and every man shall receive his own reward according to his own labour. (1 Corinthians 3:7-8)

Paul was a hard worker. Some Bible scholars say that he walked 10,000 miles on his three missionary journeys. Read that again. He didn’t fly. He didn’t drive a car or take a bus. He walked 10,000 miles.

I often tell students in our Pistis Bible School that ministry is spelled W-O-R-K. The pastor you see preach for 45 minutes on Sunday, probably put 8-12 hours or more in preparation and prayer. You don't know what else he had to do during the week as well. When I began in ministry, I was not only the pastor; I was the counselor, sound technician, message duplicator, volunteer organizer, and the janitor. I was able to do it all because the grace of God was upon me.

Sometimes young ministers feel neglected if they are assigned to behind-the-scenes work, but they shouldn't. Everything you do for the body of Christ is essential. God will give you the grace to do whatever you need to do. He sees it all and rewards.

Everyone has a specific assignment, but those assignments may develop as you mature in Christ. I have a pastor in my organization who now oversees a thriving church, but do you know where he started in ministry? He was on our Zest team; that is the auxiliary that cleans the bathrooms between services in our large church. He didn’t see that work as below him. He served the body of Christ with all of his might and with a good attitude. God noticed him, pointed him out, and told me, “That young man is called to pastor.”

He was willing to do the work with God's grace, and God rewarded him.

Practical Application – There is a grace available for you to do whatever the Lord tells you to do. Does your church need help in the nursery? There’s a grace for that. Does your church need teachers in Children’s Church? There’s a grace for that. Work with all your might but rely on God’s grace. He will reward you.

Romans 12:3; Romans 15:15





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