Living Together by God’s Spirit is Peace

So we know the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control (Gal 5:22-23), but Paul says elsewhere in the context of bearing with one another and forgiving one another, to “PUT ON compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience” (Col 3:12-13). He then says, “Above all, PUT ON love, which is the perfect bond of unity. And LET the peace of Christ…rule your hearts…LET the word of Christ dwell richly among you in all wisdom teaching and admonishing one another…And whatever you do, in word or deed, DO EVERYTHING in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him” (Col 3:14-17).

In fleshing out the truth of us “putting on” the fruit of the Spirit, and us “letting” the peace of Christ rule our hearts and “letting” Christ’s word dwell among us. How do we do this?There has to be a corporate explanation. It can’t be a solo deal.

To the Christians in Galatia, after describing the struggle with the Spirit and the flesh, Paul tells them and us to carry each other’s burdens with regard to sin. “Brothers and sisters, if someone is overtaken in any wrongdoing, you who are spiritual, restore such a person with a gentle spirit…Carry one another’s burdens; in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ” (6:1-2). Does not James also speak of this as well? “Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person (Christian) is very powerful in its effect” (James 5:16).

Now looking back to the letter to the Christians in Colossae, Paul tells them about letting Christ, who is peace, rule the hearts of the one body (the church) and let the word’s of Christ dwell among us (3:15-16). How? “In ALL wisdom teaching and admonishing.” I noticed that I used to misread this verse and not see that the wisdom comes from teaching. It’s “wisdom teaching”, which is directly tied to our source of all wisdom, which is Christ. Therefore, it’s through “wisdom teaching” and “admonishing” or warning via God’s word that brings the peace of our Lord, thanksgiving to God, and unity amongst the body. If we let God’s word and God’s word alone guide us, just imagine how unified we would become and what a powerful witness that would be to the dark and dead world?

So, as we are instructed, influenced, and guided by the word’s of Christ in Scripture, we will undoubtedly understand more and more that the Christian life is not a solo act, but involves a variety of characters in the body of Christ, who have a variety of gifts, roles, and abilities, which God uses to persevere us, comfort us, and shape us into what or who we were meant to be, and that’s the bride of our loving, majestic, and glorious God and Savior, Jesus Christ.

In the Name and Glory of The Lord and Savior of the World!