October 15 I Saturday
1 Thessalonians 3
“Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.”
What does it mean for us to have “peace with God?” The Bible speaks of two kinds of peace we can experience in relation to God. The first is a subjective peace, which is the type of peace that is talked about in Philippians 4:7: “And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” It is a personal inner peace and a sense of tranquillity of heart. The second is “peace with God” as an objective peace, which is what the opening verse of this devotion points to. This type of peace has nothing to do with how we may feel but everything to do with our position and standing before God.
We are polarized, God in His holiness and us in our godlessness and wickedness. Since the fall, there has been a wrath between God and human beings. Paul writes of this hostility between God and us in the beginning of his letter to the Romans: “The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of people, who suppress the truth by their wickedness...” (Romans 1:18). Our godlessness and wickedness bring upon God’s wrath which “will take place on the day when God judges people’s secrets through Jesus Christ” (Romans 2:16).
Paul tells us, “...we were God’s enemies” (Romans 5:10). We will notice that Paul puts this in the past tense, because there was enmity between God and human beings. We were all once enemies of God. But in the present tense, Paul writes, “...we have peace with God” (Romans 5:1). What does that mean? There has been a transition from our standing as enemies of God to being at peace with God.
All of this is made possible through Jesus Christ. He took our sin and the wrath that God should have bore upon us and we so rightly deserve to the cross. Through His death and resurrection, we no longer stand as enemies of God but can have peace with God. Jesus is the reason why we can rejoice that there is no longer a hostility between God and us. Paul says, “And not only that, but we also rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received the reconciliation” (Romans 5:11, NKJV).
Are we enjoying peace with God? Despite what we know about ourselves, we can get up in the morning and know that our conscience is clear because we have come to the cross. We are reconciled to God through Jesus Christ, and for this, we can rejoice in being at peace with God.
Prayer: Lord Jesus Christ, thank You for dying on the cross to take away the hostility between God and humanity. I rejoice in the peace that I have with God because of You. Amen!