“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.” (Galatians 5:22-23)
One of my favorite passages from The Epistle to the Romans is Romans 5:1 which says, “Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.”
The peace (εἰρήνην; eirenen) of which the Apostle Paul speaks is a tranquility and a freedom from worry. This freedom from worry is regarding our status with the One, True, Holy God of the universe. There is no more enmity or strife between the believer and God.
Why? It is because the believer in Christ has been justified by grace alone, through faith in the person and work of Jesus Christ alone. The phrase “justified by faith” is a shorthand statement including both grace and Jesus Christ.
To be justified (Δικαιωθέντες; dikaiothentes) means that God has declared the sinner righteous before Him. The sinner’s guilt has been removed and God has set him free from the penalty of sin: hell. This justification is through the God-given instrument of faith. Faith is trust in, dependence upon, commitment to and honor and worship of the Lord Jesus Christ.
What does Romans 5:1 have to do with Galatians 5:22 and the Fruit of the Spirit of peace? Plenty! For you see the peace of which the Apostle Paul speaks of regarding our peace with God is also related to the peace from God the Holy Spirit.
The spiritual fruit of peace (εἰρήνη; eirene) is also a freedom from worry and a tranquility of one’s soul. However, in Galatians 5:22 the peace mentioned refers to how the believer in Christ, who has peace with God by virtue of their justification by faith, is able to have peace while navigating through the storms of living in a sinful and fallen world.
Peace comes from Christ (John 14:27). It is a blessed quietness even in the face of the harshest circumstances. God’s peace defies human understanding (Philippians 4:7).
Dr. John MacArthur writes that peace is, “The inner calm that results from confidence in one’s saving relationship with Christ. The verb form denotes binding together and is reflected in the expression “having it all together.” Like joy, peace is not related to one’s circumstances (John 14:27; Rom. 8:28; Phil. 4:6–7, 9).”
Dr. R. C. Sproul explains that, “In defeating the world, Jesus has also granted us true peace. We are on God’s side in Christ, for He has reconciled us to the Father, and the defeat of God’s enemies on the cross is the defeat of our enemies. Furthermore, since our war with God has ended, we can live at peace with others as far as it depends on us (Rom. 12:18). We can rest peacefully in this evil world because we have already won the victory.”
What areas of your life are the most peaceful? Home? Church? Work? Where do find the greatest adversaries of peace? Home? Church? Work? Remember that peace, true and lasting peace, is rooted and grounded in the love that God has shown you in the Lord Jesus Christ. Be truly at peace today.
May the Lord’s truth and grace be found here.
Soli deo Gloria!