October 31, 2007 7:00 am
This week, our journey brings us to 2 Thessalonians 3:16.
16May the Lord of peace Himself give you peace always in every way. The Lord be with all of you.— 2 Thessalonians 3:16 (HCSB)
This is an end-of-the-letter salutation from Paul to the church at Thessalonica. Paul began and ended most all of his letters by talking about the “grace and peace” of our Lord, and his hope that it would remain with those to whom he was writing. This theme of peace is one that is woven throughout the Bible. The word “peace” (or some form of it, like “peacemaker”, “peaceful”, etc.) is found in 266 verses in the HCSB. We’re not going to look at the other 265 verses, but we’ll look at a few of them.
Peace was used as a greeting to Gideon…
23But the Lord said to him, “Peace to you. Don’t be afraid, for you will not die.”— Judges 6:23 (HCSB)
It was also used by the angels, when announcing Jesus’ birth…
14Glory to God in the highest heaven, and peace on earth to people He favors!— Luke 2:14 (HCSB)
David used it to describe the safety that he felt from God’s protection…
8I will both lie down and sleep in peace, for You alone, Lord, make me live in safety.— Psalm 4:8 (HCSB)
In fact, Isaiah prophesied that one of the Messiah’s names would deal with His peace-making qualities…
6For a child will be born for us, a son will be given to us, and the government will be on His shoulders. He will be named Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace.— Isaiah 9:6 (HCSB)
In these four verses, we see a common theme - the source of peace is God, through His Son Jesus. But how to we get this peace? Ask God for it! According to Peter, the disciple of Jesus who went on to lead the early church…
10For the one who wants to love life and to see good days must keep his tongue from evil and his lips from speaking deceit, 11and he must turn away from evil and do good. He must seek peace and pursue it, 12because the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous and His ears are open to their request. But the face of the Lord is against those who do evil.— 1 Peter 3:10-12 (HCSB)
But we don’t even have to take Peter’s word for it. Jesus told His disciples,
27"Peace I leave with you. My peace I give to you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Your heart must not be troubled or fearful…"— John 14:27 (HCSB)
Ask, and you will receive - that’s a promise from God. I pray that the peace of God will overwhelm you as you live for Him on this earth.