|artwork by Amy Scott|
When I saw Amy Scott’s delightful work of art on the Artful Story Journaling Facebook page, I was drawn to its color and charm, and even more so when I read this description that Amy included with her artwork, I started this in one of my favorite spots on our university campus in Korea. I finished it in bits and pieces in various places. I'm giving a copy to a friend today who's moving to a new location and situation. Please pray for her.
Amplified: Paul, an apostle (special messenger) of Christ Jesus (the Messiah), by the divine will (the purpose and the choice of God) to the saints (the consecrated, set-apart ones) at Ephesus who are also faithful and loyal and steadfast in Christ Jesus: May grace (God’s unmerited favor) and spiritual peace [which means peace with God and harmony, unity, and undisturbedness] be yours from God our Father and from the Lord Jesus Christ.
Phillips: Paul, messenger of Jesus Christ by God’s choice, to all faithful Christians at Ephesus (and other places where this letter is read): grace and peace be to you from God the Father and our Lord Jesus Christ.
Wuest: Paul, an ambassador of Christ Jesus through the will of God, to the saints, the ones who are [in Ephesus], namely, believing ones in Christ Jesus. Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
Peace (eirene from the verb eiro) literally pictures the binding or joining together again of that which had been separated or divided; it conveys the idea of setting at one again. Eirene is the tranquility which results in the joining together again those who were separated, such as a sinner and a holy God through the blood of Christ..
Greek scholar Kenneth S. Wuest states, "By His (Messiah's) death, (Jesus) satisfied the just demands of the law which we broke, thus making it possible for a righteous and holy God to bestow mercy upon a believing sinner and do so without violating His justice. Our Lord thus bound together again the believing sinner and God (in an indissoluble, living union), thus making peace. There is therefore a state of untroubled, undisturbed wellbeing for the sinner who places his faith in the Savior. The law of God has nothing against him, and he can look up into the Father’s face unafraid and unashamed. This is justifying peace."
Theologian Charles Spurgeon said, "I find myself frequently depressed—perhaps more so than any other person here. And I find no better cure for that depression than to trust in the Lord with all my heart, and seek to realize afresh the power of the peace-speaking blood of Jesus, and His infinite love in dying upon the cross to put away all my transgressions."
Horatio Spafford had just been ruined financially by the great Chicago Fire of October, 1871. Shortly thereafter, while crossing the Atlantic, all four of Spafford’s daughters died in a collision with another ship. Spafford’s wife Anna survived and sent him the now famous telegram, “Saved alone.” Several weeks later, as Spafford’s own ship passed near the spot where his daughters died, the Holy Spirit suddenly overwhelmed him with what can only be described as an inrush of supernatural peace, the peace of God. With tears streaming down his face, he picked up a pen to record his feelings and from his heart, filled with the peace of God, flowed the timeless words that speak of that peace God provides even though our world is falling apart...When peace, like a river, attendeth my way, When sorrows like sea billows roll; Whatever my lot, Thou has taught me to say, It is well, it is well, with my soul.
Look Up—meditate on Ephesians 1:1-2 pray to see what it reveals about the character of God.