2 Timothy 1:1-2 says “Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, according to the promise of life which is in Christ Jesus, To Timothy, my dearly beloved son: Grace, mercy, and peace, from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Lord.
Mercy and Grace are often confused. While the terms have similar meanings, grace and mercy are not the same. To summarize the difference: mercy is God not punishing us as our sins deserve, and grace is God blessing us despite the fact that we do not deserve it. Mercy is deliverance from judgement. Grace is extending kindness to the unworthy.
Acts 13:22 says “And when he had removed him, he raised up unto them David to be their king; to whom also he gave testimony, and said, I have found David the son of Jesse, a man after mine own heart, which shall fulfil all my will.” Here God showed His grace upon David.
If the grace and mercy of God is not in you, you will end up like Esau. Malachi 1:3 says “And I hated Esau, and laid his mountains and his heritage waste for the dragons of the wilderness.”
According to the Bible, we have all sinned (1 John 1:8; Romans 3:23). As a result of that sin, we all deserve death (Romans 6:23) and eternal judgement in the lake of fire (Revelation 20:12-15). With that in mind, every day we live is an act of God’s mercy. If God gave us all what we deserve, we would all be, right now, condemned for eternity.
However, alongside having grace and mercy from God, we also need to have Peace with him. Peace is a state of tranquillity or quietness of spirit that transcends circumstances. The closer we draw to God, the more of His peace we can enjoy.
Hebrews 12:14-16 says “Follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord: Looking diligently lest any man fail of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up trouble you, and thereby many be defiled.”
Colossians 3:15 says “And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to which also ye are called in one body; and be ye thankful.”
The benefits of having peace from God are that; it will lead you to favour upon favour in your life, it will show in your attitude, it helps you plan well for the future, and it brings a bright lifestyle in your life in a way that people will start admiring his favour in your life.
So how do we draw near enough to experience His peace? Jesus said, “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid” (John 14:27). We come into the presence of the Lord through His Son.
Mind you, having peace with God is quite different from having peace from God. You must first have peace with God before you can receive that loving peace from God, by accepting Christ into your life and living a godly lifestyle.
Before we can understand what it means to have peace with God, we must recognize that human beings in our natural state are enemies of God. We cannot create peace with God because our best efforts on our best day are nothing but filthy rags compared to His holiness (Isaiah 64:6). God took the initiative in pursuing peace with us by sending His Son to earth.
Human beings were created to live in peace with God. Sin destroyed that peace and still destroys it for everyone who refuses Jesus’ offer of salvation. Let’s pray that the grace, mercy and peace of God will come and remain in our lives through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.