Thursday, November 26, 2015

The God of Peace

"Now may the God of peace, Who through the blood of the eternal covenant brought back from the dead our Lord Jesus, that Great Shepherd of the sheep, equip you with everything good for doing His will, and may He work in us what is pleasing to Him, through Jesus Christ, to Whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen." Hebrews 13:20-21

"The title God of peace is used six times in the NT (see also Rom. 15:33; 1 Cor. 14:33; 2 Cor. 13:11; Phil. 4:9; 1 Thess. 5:23). Whenever the title was used, some sort of difficulty existed among the recipients of the letter. This is also the case here. The readers of Hebrews were wondering whether they should reject Christianity and return to Judaism in the face of increasing persecution." (from my NKJV Study Bible's commentary) It rings true today. Persecution is increasing and so is fear/worry/anxiety. But our Yahweh Shalom remains the same! The God of peace loves us, works in us, and equips us to do His will. This prayer (the 2 verses above) gives us comfort for the God of peace has our back, hope because of Christ's resurrection, and assurance of personal care by our Lord Jesus, the great Shepherd of the sheep. All these promises are guaranteed by the blood of the eternal covenant. Whatever we lack, God will make up in us so that we can accomplish His will. Our part is to surrender and desire to do the will of God and to please God.

"Is not God wise enough to manage the complications of our lives--and to bring order and beauty out of them? Has He not skill enough? Is He not our Father? And will He not always do the very best and wisest thing for us? Should we not trust Him--and cease to be anxious about anything that we have committed to Him? Is not anxiety, doubt? And is not doubt, sin? We are simply to commit our way to the Lord, trust Him, and be at peace." (J.R. Miller)

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