When we stand at the foot of the cross, the ground is level.
Jesus preached peace to those "far away" and "near."
(I like the way Paul starts with "far" and then comes to "near.")
For Paul this meant "Gentile" and "Jew."
For us this could mean "Out" and "In."
Or "not like us" and "like us."
Or "those-we-thought-were-unworthy" and "those-we-thought-were-worthy."
Jesus brought us peace:
- Peace with God.
- Peace with ourselves.
- Peace with one-another.
Although Paul wrote in Greek, being a Jew I imagine he was thinking of the Hebrew word "Shalom" which was how Hebrews greeted and blessed one-another. "Shalom li cha" - "peace be with you." Peace in Hebrew culture meant harmony, wholeness, reconciliation, restoration in the most holistic sense of the word."
How does this peace work?
We have access to God.
We can become God's children.
And this is made real to us by the amazing work of the Holy Spirit.
The Holy Spirit re-assures us that we are God's children.
He fills us with love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, gentleness and self-control.
I wanted to say that we were once "far" but now we are "near", but actually it is better than that: We were "far" but now we have peace.
Shalom li cha!!!