Summary: As we examine this prayer of benediction we discover several truths about God.
The word “benediction” comes from the two Latin words “bene” = well and “dicere” = speak. It means “to speak well of.” The idea is to speak a blessing. Many churches end their worship services with a benediction, or a blessing. The Bible contains several blessings that have often been used as a prayer of benediction. Let’s look at a few examples:
“The LORD bless you and keep you: The LORD make His face shine upon you, and be gracious to you. The LORD lift up His countenance upon you, And give you peace” (Numbers 6:24-26).
“The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Spirit be with you all, Amen” (2 Corinthians 13:14).
“Peace be to the brethren, and love with faith, from God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Grace be with all those who love our Lord Jesus in sincerity. Amen“ (Ephesians 6:23-24): In fact, most of the New Testament Epistles end with a brief benediction.
When Jesus ascended back into heaven he blessed his disciples. “And He led them out as far as Bethany, and He lifted up His hands and blessed them” (Luke 24:51).
The book of Hebrews also closes with two benedictions (Hebrews 13:20-21, 25). . The Author asks the blessings of God upon his readers. As we look at this prayer, we find that the author focuses his prayer God ward. Of course, all prayer must focus on God, who He is, and what he has done for us, and what he is doing in us. Who is this God to whom we are to pray. As we examine this prayer of benediction we discover several truths about God.
I. GOD IS A GOD OF PEACE
Men are constantly searching for peace. They search for peace among nations. Over the centuries, there have been numerous “peace treaties.” Sadly, most of them have been broken. In Costa Rica there is a “University of Peace,” While we ought to work for peace on earth, there will never be real and lasting peace until the Prince of Peace comes again.
Men also search for inner peace. Yet most of us struggle through life searching for a peace that constantly seems to elude us. That is why so many are turning to drugs and alcohol.
To say that God is the God of peace, means that God alone is the source of peace. If a person will turn to God in faith, he can experience peace no matter how much trouble he may have in this life.
Peace comes through a right relationship with God through His Son Jesus Christ. “Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ” (Romans 5:1)
Jesus said, “Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid” (John 14:27). You will never know peace by looking to the world for it.
Jesus also said, “These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation; but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world” (John 16:33). Paul wrote, “For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace” (Ro. 8:6).