• Bishop Keith Butler

Grace and Peace are Yours

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



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