Therefore having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ…
The search for inner peace can be a continual struggle. Looking continually around us at our circumstances, at others, or again and again at ourselves, peace can somehow dissipate from our hearts. We all have our own ideas of what could bring us peace: peace in our circumstances, more money, a new job, a larger house, a new relationship, an island holiday…
The question is can these things give us complete peace? Are the people who already have these things, peaceful? Can ‘outer’ things bring us to a place of perfect ‘inner’ peace?
1 Corinthians 1:3
Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
Nineteen books in the New Testament open with a variation of the verse above; grace and peace always put together as the two things to be received from God our Father and our Lord Jesus Christ. All other blessings and happiness also come from God, but so that we can receive these things God continually reminds us to receive His grace and His peace. (John 1:3, Ephesians 1:3, John 15:11) Receiving these ‘inner’ gifts, all ‘outer’ things – peace in our circumstances, all blessings and happiness – God promises, will be added to us. (Matthew 6:33, Romans 14:17)
For the kingdom of God is not eating and drinking, but righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit.
For He Himself is our peace, who has made both one, and has broken down the middle wall of separation, having abolished in His flesh the enmity, that is, the law of commandments contained in ordinances, so as to create in Himself one new man from the two, thus making peace, and that He might reconcile them both to God in one body through the cross, thereby putting to death the enmity.
Surely He has borne our griefs and carries our sorrows; yet we esteemed Him stricken, smitten by God, and afflicted. But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; the chastisement for our peace was upon Him and by His stripes we are healed.
Peace in the Bible is defined as Jesus Himself, who has become for us, our peace with God. (Romans 5:1, Ephesians 2:14-16) The sin that was in man since Adam, needed to be punished but instead of punishing us for sin, God sent Jesus to receive the punishment for all our sin. (Romans 5:12, Romans 8:3) Knowing we have sin causes us to condemn ourselves and peace in our conscience is lost. (Romans 3:20, 2 Corinthians 3:9) But knowing Jesus took the chastisement or the payment for all our sin in order for us to have peace with God, re-establishes any peace lost by our actions or the actions of others around us. (Isaiah 53:5, 2 Peter 1: 5-9)
Peace with God is the inner peace that we all seek. It is the greatest peace possible as it came at the greatest cost, the sacrifice of Jesus on our behalf at the cross. (Ephesians 2:14-16, Isaiah 53:5) Jesus will never condemn you for being afraid; He only ever wants to show you your complete forgivenessby His blood to give you the peace that surpasses all understanding. (Romans 8:1, John 20: 26-28, Matthew 26:28, Philippians 4:6-7) The only thing outside of ourselves that can give us perfect inner peace is the work of Jesus on the cross. Grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord. (2 Peter 1:2) Amen.