1 Corinthians 1:3
3 Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
Today’s verse deals with a common greeting that we see the Apostle Paul use in his letters to the church. In our Bible group study I asked why we don’t greet each other like this anymore. I was curious as to whether this phase would be used as verbal greeting or if it was something more formal reserved for written correspondence. Either way if we break down this simple greeting some pretty substantial concepts are revealed.
First, Grace. The more we study the scriptures the more we realize that it is grace that enables us to have relationship with God. There is nothing we can do on our own to fix the fact that we are separated from God by sin. It is only through God’s grace that we are allowed a reprieve from God’s judgment. It is only through God’s grace that we are allowed to live eternally with Him.
Next, Peace. Peace is the resultant of the work of Grace in our lives. Apart from reconciliation with God there is no true peace. No peace of the soul. It is in peace that we find true rest. It is in peace that we are able to see ourselves forgiven and are therefore able to forgive others. Peace is the fountain from which love and service overflows. We have to be secure in our relationship with God before we can we secure in our relationship with others. Peace is our security.
Finally, this simple greeting reminds us that everything flows from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Simply, God the Father desires reconciliation and that reconciliation is achieved by Jesus’ death, burial, and resurrection. It is out of God’s work that grace and peace flow.
No real application here today. Its up to you how you greet others. This verse challenges me to do so in a way that encourages my fellow travelers in Kingdom to remember what and who got us to this moment. Next time you meet another Christian try to remind them of the hope that lives in them. I’ll go first:
Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ!
Heavenly Father, thank you God that your story is not so complicated that we find ourselves unable to understand it. Thank you Father that in your divine mercy you chose to show us grace and withhold for a time your judgment of our sin. Thank you Father that you provided a way in the sacrifice of Jesus to satisfy your judgment. Thank you God for the peace you give us in salvation. You are Holy and your divine plan brings peace to us all. Let us rest in you today. In Jesus’ name. Amen.