Our lives will experience uncertainty, turmoil, difficulty, and hardship. Yet Jesus promises that we can live a life of joy and peace, regardless of what we may face.

We must remember that peace is more than a feeling or emotion, rather, peace is a Person (Jesus). 

In Ephesians 2:14, Paul reminds us that despite the great hostility, Jesus wants to be our peace.

In this expositional message, Nathan Johnson examines Ephesians 2:14 and explains what true peace is and gives three directions which godly peace flows.

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Key Passage: Ephesians 2:14

Ephesians 2:14 – “For he himself is our peace, who has made us both one and has broken down in his flesh the dividing wall of hostility”

A Simple Bible Study Resource

What is Peace

  • 91x in NT … in every book except 1 John
  • 8x in Ephesians … 4x in our section (2.14-17)
    • He is peace (v14)
    • He made peace (v15)
    • He proclaimed peace (v17) to both Jews and Gentiles
  • Peace is NOT … sitting on a beach with lemonade or even a truce in battle
  • Peace is …
    • Greek “eirênê” (peace) – Harmonious relations and freedom from disputes; harmony, tranquility
    • Hebrew “shalom” (peace)
      • peace is the removal of every enemy faction
      • also contains the idea of well-being, health, prosperity, security, soundness, and completeness/wholeness
  • Peace was used in the OT as: 
    • Greetings and farewells
    • Sense of welfare (asking how someone was doing – “how is your peace?”)
      • Exodus 18:7 – Moses went out to meet his father-in-law and bowed down and kissed him. And they asked each other of their welfare (shalom) and went into the tent.
    • Absence of hostility (in contrast with warfare)
    • Relationships (characterized by friendship, care, loyalty, and love)
      • Several times in OT, the term “close friend” appears (Psalm 7:4; 41:9; Her 20:10, 28:22) … term is translated “man of my peace”
    • As the inauguration of covenants (to formalize the existing relationship of love and loyalty)
  • This OT idea of peace was brought into the NT understanding

The God of Peace

  • Romans 15:33 – “Now the God of peace be with you all.”
  • 2 Corinthians 13:11 – Finally, brothers, rejoice. Aim for restoration, comfort one another, agree with one another, live in peace; and the God of love and peace will be with you.
    • also found in Romans 16.20, Philippians 4.9, 1 Thessalonians 5.23, Hebrews 13.20
  • Isaiah 9:6 – For unto us a Child is born, Unto us a Son is given; And the government will be upon His shoulder. And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
    • Literaly: the Prince of Completeness (or) Prince of Soundness

He is our peace

  • Jesus doesn’t merely give us peace … He is our peace
  • Galatians 5:22-23 – But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law.
  • There is no peace outside of Jesus!
  • John 14:6 – Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.
    • He is the Way . . . so being outside of Him you’re lost and confused
    • He is Truth . . . so everything outside of Him is a lie
    • He is Life . . . so everything outside of Him is death
  • Ephesians 2:14: [Jesus] is our peace . . .
    • He is Peace . . . so everything outside of Him is chaos, frustration, warfare, trouble, pain, problems

If Jesus is our Peace … 3 Ideas (or directions)

1. Redemption (Peace with God)

  • Jesus doesn’t just give us salvation, He IS our salvation
    • He brought peace between us and God (salvation)
    • Ephesians 1.7
      • forgiveness: my past has been taken care of
      • redemption: my shackles have been removed
    • Ephesians 2.1-10

2. Rest (Peace within Ourselves)

  • Greek “eirênê” (peace) – Harmonious relations and freedom from disputes; harmony, tranquility
  • Hebrew “shalom” (peace) – peace is the removal of every enemy faction … also contains the idea of well-being, health, prosperity, security, soundness, and completeness/wholeness
  • 1 Thessalonians 5:23 – Now may the God of peace Himself sanctify you completely; and may your whole spirit, soul, and body be preserved blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.
    • completely: wholly complete, through and through
  • During wind and waves of life – the focus must be upon Prince of Peace – “Peace be still”
  • Mark 4:36-41: Now when they had left the multitude, they took Him along in the boat as He was. And other little boats were also with Him. And a great windstorm arose, and the waves beat into the boat, so that it was already filling. But He was in the stern, asleep on a pillow. And they awoke Him and said to Him, “Teacher, do You not care that we are perishing?” Then He arose and rebuked the wind, and said to the sea, “Peace, be still!” And the wind ceased and there was a great calm. But He said to them, “Why are you so fearful? How is it that you have no faith?” And they feared exceedingly, and said to one another, “Who can this be, that even the wind and the sea obey Him!”
    • Then they land and a demon possessed man finds “peace”
  • Peace is a removal of all enemy faction (conflict)
    • doesn’t mean life is easy
    • doesn’t mean temptation goes away
    • doesn’t mean you aren’t attacked
    • but it does mean Jesus is our protection and fortress
    • The Old Testament is full of “fortress” language:
      • Psalm 18:2 – The LORD is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer; My God, my strength, in whom I will trust; My shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.
      • Psalm 71:3 – Be my strong refuge, To which I may resort continually; You have given the commandment to save me, For You are my rock and my fortress.
      • Psalm 91:2 – I will say of the LORD, “He is my refuge and my fortress; My God, in Him I will trust.”
      • Psalm 144:2 – My loving kindness and my fortress, My high tower and my deliverer, My shield and the One in whom I take refuge, Who subdues my people under me.
      • Jeremiah 16:19 – O LORD, my strength and my fortress, My refuge in the day of affliction, The Gentiles shall come to You From the ends of the earth and say, “Surely our fathers have inherited lies, Worthlessness and unprofitable things.”
  • Quotes from Yesteryear:
    • John Knox: “I fear not the tyranny of man, neither yet what the devil can invent against me.”
    • Amy Carmichael: “When satan heard the ninety-first Psalm, did the fourth verse baffle him? “With His feathers He shall create a fence for thee.” So covered, and so fenced, what can satan’s malice accomplish against us? Nothing, nothing at all.”
    • Goulburn: “The greatest old or new testament saints were on a level that is quite within our reach. The same spiritual power that enabled them to become our spiritual heroes, is also available to us.”

3. Reconciliation (Peace with Others)

  • The context of our passage – making both groups one
  • Ephesians 2:14–16 – For he himself is our peace, who has made us both one and has broken down in his flesh the dividing wall of hostility by abolishing the law of commandments expressed in ordinances, that he might create in himself one new man in place of the two, so making peace, and might reconcile us both to God in one body through the cross, thereby killing the hostility.
    • Denominations
    • Racial
    • Political

In Our Next Study Together …

I invite you to join me on this journey from the book of Ephesians to discover God’s eternal purpose, His plan for your life, and learn how to practically live out an abundant and fruitful Christian life. 

  • The focus of our next study: Ephesians 2:15-17
  • We will examine the reality that when Jesus is our peace, He breaks down every dividing wall … as found in Ephesians 2:15-17.
  • I encourage you to read through Ephesians a couple of times this week and focus specifically on Ephesians 2:11-22.

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About The Deeper Christian Bible Study Series

The Deeper Christian Bible Study Series in Ephesians is a Christ-centered practical in-depth verse-by-verse study of Paul’s letter to the Ephesians. Join NRJohnson (Nathan Johnson) as he expositionally preaches from this incredible book – which will help you grow in your faith, gain greater intimacy with Jesus, and understand how to study God’s Word.

Many Christians feel frustrated because they don’t grow spiritually. Deeper Christian equips Christians to understand the Word of God and cultivate a passionate love for Jesus that turns the world upside down.

About NRJohnson (Nathan Johnson)

NRJohnson (Nathan Johnson) is a Christian who has an overwhelming passion for Jesus, the Gospel, and Studying God’s Word. He is a writer, teacher, and communicator who helps Christians discover and experience a passionate love for God and His Word so that they can grow in their faith, live victorious lives, share the Gospel boldly, grow in their intimacy with Jesus, and transform the world through the indwelling life of Christ.
Read more about him here.

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