Grace and Peace To You!

Paul’s normal greeting and prayer of blessing are these words, "Grace and peace to you from God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ our Savior. He uses this phrase, or a very close form, sixteen times (Rom., 1 Cor. , 2Cor., Gal., Eph., Philip., Col., 1 Thess., 2 Thess., 1 Tim., 2 Tim., Titus, Philemon, 1 Pet., 2 John, Revelations) within the first three verses of each of these letters. I think he might have been trying to make a point.

You see, these concepts are strange and queer to the world. This phrase is at once a hope to grasp, a prayer to plea, and a blessing to receive. It is a hope in that we claim as a promise God’s bestowal of grace and peace for those who are in Christ. It is a prayer in that it is Paul’s desire (and mine too) that you too might partake of this grace and its twin sister peace. Finally, it is a blessing that God allows us to be harbingers for His grace and peace in the world to spread them through the life of Christ in us.

These words can open locked doors of your mind like magic keys. They open to us the chains and shackles that have held us in deepest slavery of our souls.

It is grace and grace alone, that marvelous, wonderful, matchless grace that God gave us in Christ that destroyed and rendered void Sin’s contract for our employment with death. He is no longer our master because of Grace. By all means give me grace, I must have it to live. If I have not grace, I have not life but the sickly, pathetic, anemic existence that Sin allows me. God give me grace. God give me Christ.

Next, give me peace. Peace is always found with her big sister Grace. You can never find Peace till you have found Grace first. In fact Peace does not exist except for the work of Grace. Peace is that certain and abiding knowledge that we are justified before God from all our sin. That Christ has placated our conscience toward God. That there is not now nor can ever be again a claim that would find us guilty before God. We are free from the tyrant of a guilty conscience FOREVER. There is now therefore no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.

I underlined that on purpose. There are charlatans, pernicious peddlers of poisonous platitudes that will tell you they have the secret to grace. Just take this elixir of conscience numbing deception and you will never be concerned about peace again. Your conscience won’t bother you anymore. They do not tell you that they have not satisfied conscience but seared it so it can not feel life-saving pain again. Run from that smiling demon as quickly as your limbs can fly you.

No, you must have grace which is found through faith in Christ alone. Any admixture will immediately render the life-blood death-blood. Don’t add anything to it. Now, once you take this grace by faith your conscience is satisfied. It is so satisfied it not only does not condemn you, but now encourages you. Peace is the most productive state of being. You will be among a select few who have no more battles to fight. Your king fights these for you as you submit and yield to his Lordship and will.

Grace takes care of Sin once and for all. Peace takes care of your conscience once an for all.

Grace and peace to you.

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