He himself is our peace

17

Let’s continue our study of Ephesians with these verses.

For he himself is our peace, who has made us both one and has broken down in his flesh the dividing wall of hostility by abolishing the law of commandments expressed in ordinances, that he might create in himself one new man in place of the two, so making peace,  and might reconcile us both to God in one body through the cross, thereby killing the hostility.  And he came and preached peace to you who were far off and peace to those who were near.

It is worth mentioning here that Paul would have had knowledge of the physical wall that would have separated the Jews and the Gentiles in the temple at Jerusalem. There were physical walls between men and women, priests and Jews and Gentiles. A Jewish historian has recorded that there were inscriptions along the wall warning that no foreigner could enter the Jewish part of the temple without the threat of the punishment of death.

The hostility between Jews and Gentiles was evident and physically so.

There was also the fact that everyone was alienated from God. Within the temple was a thick curtain that sealed off the inner temple, Only the high priest was allowed to enter and approach God in doing so.

So there was alienation from God as well.

These verses make it clear that the purpose of Jesus’ death was to tear down these physical, metaphorical and hostile walls between men and God.  And the result? Peace.

 

Thoughts for Today

 

  1. What do these verses tell us about the grace of God?
  2. What words does Paul use to emphasise the fact that the cross was a complete work?
  3. How are these verses good news for us today and how are they good news for unbelievers?

 

Prayers for Today

 

  • Who can we pray for today who has not had this experience of reconciliation with God?
  • How can we ask God to help us use these truths in our witnessing?

Grace and Love

Helen x

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