Peace to This House
“When you enter a house, first say, ‘Peace to this house.’ If someone who promotes peace is there, your peace will rest on them; if not, it will return to you.”
Luke 10:5-6 (NIVUK)
The Gospels record that new disciples came to Jesus. From them Jesus appointed 72 (some manuscripts say 70) to go ahead of him to prepare towns and villages for his coming visit to them as he passes through those places on the way to Jerusalem.
He gave these disciples various instructions, and one of them is noted above. They were to declare peace as they go from house to house. The intent is to take the blessing of peace. It’s instructive for us: do we see ourselves as messengers of peace, God’s peace, when we enter someone’s house? Jesus was telling these disciples to stop and think as they enter the homes, and to remember that theirs was a message of peace, not just in the words they said, but also in their attitude and approach. It reminds me of an old sign I saw once in the kitchen of someone’s home: “Bless this house.”
Luke uses a phrase that is found only in his gospel account. It is “someone who promotes peace”, and it is translated in various ways, most of which suggest the idea of “someone inclined to peace”. In other words, maybe there is someone in the house who is likely to be receptive to words of peace, and therefore he or she would be ready to listen or respond more to what the disciples would say. That happens today as well. Some are more interested and some decidedly less interested. If no one is inclined to peace, go to the next house, Christ says, and take the message of peace with you. Don’t stop: keep taking the message.
Surely this idea of taking peace with us wherever we go is as relevant to us now as it was at the time of Christ.
Jesus is our peace, and let’s take his reconciliatory message of hope with us into the workplace, the school, the church, where we relax, and, also, when we go to someone else’s home, let it be with the thought of “Bless this house.”
Father, help me to take the message of Christ’s peace with me wherever I go, and let me be an example of his peace whenever I visit other people’s homes. In Jesus’ name.
Study by James Henderson
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