Luke 24:36-43 (NRSV)
Jesus Appears to His Disciples
36 While they were talking about this, Jesus himself stood among them and said to them, “Peace be with you.”
37 They were startled and terrified, and thought that they were seeing a ghost. 38 He said to them, “Why are
you frightened, and why do doubts arise in your hearts? 39 Look at my hands and my feet; see that it is I
myself. Touch me and see; for a ghost does not have flesh and bones as you see that I have.” 40 And when he
had said this, he showed them his hands and his feet. 41 While in their joy they were disbelieving and still
wondering, he said to them, “Have you anything here to eat?” 42 They gave him a piece of broiled fish, 43 and
he took it and ate in their presence.
Offering peace? When is the last time that you offered peace to someone? Do you even know what
that also means? What does it mean to you? Do you even think about peace? Do you know it is a part of our
Church of the Brethren witness? Really, do you know that?
With all the divisions that are currently in our culture and society, have you ever thought about
offering peace to the world around you? Peace is something that has many different meanings, look up the
definitions to see yourself. To borrow a term, "Google it." I would like to offer one explanation from
dictionary.com, it is: "A state of mutual harmony between people or groups, especially in personal relations:
Try to live in peace with your neighbors" (Dictionary.com accessed 8.21.19). That is one definition from the
dictionary, however, what is a biblical interpretation of peace? Especially in relationships? Have you ever
thought about that?
Did you know that peace is mentioned 163 times in the Old Testament (according to Biblegateway.
com) and 92 times in the New Testament (also according to Biblegateway.com)? Furthermore, Jesus,
after the resurrection, always said to his disciples when he appeared to them some opening greeting with
“peace.” So, peace is essential throughout the entire Bible.
So, we are trying new things concerning peace this month, within and outside of our walls, here, at the
Church. Starting on the second Sunday in September, I will preach a four-part series called "Offering Peace."
On September 21, which is "International Day of Peace," we are having a community outreach celebrating
"peace," called Fall Peace Day Block Party from 10 am- 2 pm. Please be looking for more information
about how you can help! The Church is more than the building; it's about the people! Also, Sunday,
September 22, 2019, will be Peace Sunday during morning worship.
So, peace is something we are going to spending some time together in worship. However, when is the
last time you offered peace to the world around you? How can you share peace? How can you have peace?
We will look at some of these questions and more in worship this month.
Peace, Pastor Harvey