peace

©2022 dan bulkley | ask@lifefellowship.org

peace

section 1

If we are truly to be bound together in unity with each other through our Lord; it would be good to examine the bond that brings us Christ’s unity. The bond of peace is the true quality of the relationship. It is not a façade of tranquility like a cold-war of politeness and meaningless platitudes  isaiah 1:13 . No, the bond of peace is genuine relationships which foundation and structure is Jesus Himself  colossians 2:6-7 .

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reference scriptures

isaiah 1:13  nlt 

Stop bringing Me your meaningless gifts; the incense of your offerings disgusts Me! As for your celebrations of the new moon and the Sabbath and your special days for fasting— they are all sinful and false. I want no more of your pious meetings.

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colossians 2:6-7  esv 

Therefore, as you received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him, rooted and built up in Him and established in the faith, just as you were taught, abounding in thanksgiving.

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my notes:

section 2

We are to flee our immature, selfish desires so that we are freed to pursue peace TOGETHER in our Lord  ii timothy 2:22 . This is because peace is not just a feeling or a state of our own being, but rather a relationship with God and others  ii corinthians 13:11 . Your very own inner peace is indispensably dependent on how you relate to God and other people even in your independent circumstances  ecclesiastes 4:7-12 . Peace doesn’t just happen. It is a path we seek to walk in by following our Lord to know Him  hosea 6:3  and to live in His Kingdom and Righteousness  matthew 6:33 . The peace God offers to give us  psalm 85:8 , so that we are at peace with Him, is a gift IF we ourselves will not remain hostile towards Him  leviticus 26:14-15, 18, 21, 23, 27 .

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reference scriptures

ii timothy 2:22  esv 

So flee youthful passions and pursue righteousness, faith, love, and peace, along with those who call on the Lord from a pure heart.

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ii corinthians 13:11  esv 

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.

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my notes:

ecclesiastes 4:7-12  csb 

Again, I saw futility under the sun: There is a person without a companion, without even a son or brother, and though there is no end to all his struggles, his eyes are still not content with riches. "Who am I struggling for," he asks, "and depriving myself of good things?" This too is futile and a miserable task.

Two are better than one because they have a good reward for their efforts. For if either falls, his companion can lift him up; but pity the one who falls without another to lift him up. Also, if two lie down together, they can keep warm; but how can one person alone keep warm? And if someone overpowers one person, two can resist him. A cord of three strands is not easily broken.

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hosea 6:3  esv 

Let us know; let us press on to know the LORD; His going out is sure as the dawn; He will come to us as the showers, as the spring rains that water the earth.

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matthew 6:33  esv 

But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.

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psalm 85:8  csb 

I will listen to what God will say; surely the Lord will declare peace to His people, His faithful ones, but not let them go back to foolish ways.

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leviticus 26:14-15, 18, 21, 23, 27  nlt 

"However, if you do not listen to Me or obey all these commands, and if you break My covenant by rejecting My decrees, treating My regulations with contempt, and refusing to obey My commands...And if...you still disobey Me...If even then you remain hostile toward Me...And if you fail to learn the lesson and continue your hostility toward Me...If in spite of all this you still refuse to listen and still remain hostile toward Me...

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section 3

The peace that God gives us with each other resides between us when we make the effort to live in Him  john 15:4-5  by doing His will within ourselves and towards each other by following His orderly will  i thessalonians 5:12-18 , not disorder i corinthians 14:33, 37-38 , that God has set before us. So, when we have His peace reigning among us, we have an agreeable, mutual pursuit  philippians 2:2   amos 3:3  that overrides any lesser disagreements  philippians 4:2 .

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reference scriptures

john 15:4-5  esv 

Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in Me. I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in Me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing.

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i thessalonians 5:12-18  niv84 

Now we ask you, brothers, to respect those who work hard among you, who are over you in the Lord and who admonish you. Hold them in the highest regard in love because of their work. Live in peace with each other.

And we urge you, brothers, warn those who are idle, encourage the timid, help the weak, be patient with everyone. Make sure that nobody pays back wrong for wrong, but always try to be kind to each other and to everyone else. Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.

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i corinthians 14:33, 37-38  esv 

For God is not a God of confusion but of peace...

If anyone thinks that he is a prophet, or spiritual, he should acknowledge that the things I am writing to you are a command of the Lord. If anyone does not recognize this, he is not recognized.

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philippians 2:2  csb 

...make my joy complete by thinking the same way, having the same love, united in spirit, intent on one purpose.

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amos 3:3  nkjv 

Can two walk together, unless they are agreed?

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philippians 4:2  esv 

I entreat Euodia and I entreat Syntyche to agree in the Lord.

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my notes:

section 4

Though BEWARE: the sinful mind is set towards separation and destruction. HALLELUJAH!- the mind controlled by the Spirit is set on peace  romans 8:6 - which is an ongoing, good relationship with the Lord and others in Truth and Love  ii john 3 . Since selfishness and worldliness come naturally to us, we should not be surprised that not all your relationships will be peaceful  ii corinthians 6:14-16 . We are to make every effort to keep unity in the Spirit (not apart from the Spirit) through the bond of peace  ephesians 4:3 , but that can only exist in Truth and Christ’s Love  i john 3:16-18 . Without both walking in Truth and Love, all sincere effort still may not result in peace between to souls  romans 12:17-18 . Christ did not come to bring peace in a false, temporary, insincere way  john 14:27 , but rather actually expose our lack of true peace  matthew 10:32-39  so that we might have genuine peace with Him  john 9:39-41   matthew 9:12-13 . When we act like mere humans we will not be at peace with each other  i corinthians 3:3 , but even if one genuinely follows the Lord they will not have peace with worldly people, even worldly believers  galatians 4:16   i corinthians 11:19 . So, do not arrogantly try to control relationships that can have no peace when opposing He Who is our Peace  i corinthians 7:15   ephesians 2:14 . Make the Biblical effort but recognize that only God can actually accomplish peace for us.

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reference scriptures

romans 8:6  csb 

Now the mindset of the flesh is death, but the mindset of the Spirit is life and peace.

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ii john 3  esv 

Grace, mercy, and peace will be with us, from God the Father and from Jesus Christ the Father’s Son, in truth and love.

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ii corinthians 6:14-16  nkjv 

Do not be unequally yoked together with unbelievers. For what fellowship has righteousness with lawlessness? And what communion has light with darkness? And what accord has Christ with Belial? Or what part has a believer with an unbeliever? And what agreement has the temple of God with idols? For you are the temple of the living God. As God has said: "I will dwell in them And walk among them. I will be their God, And they shall be My people."

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ephesians 4:3  csb 

...making every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace.

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i john 3:16-18  csb 

This is how we have come to know love: He laid down His life for us. We should also lay down our lives for our brothers and sisters. If anyone has this world’s goods and sees a fellow believer in need but withholds compassion from him — how does God’s love reside in him? Little children, let us not love in word or speech, but in action and in truth.

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romans 12:17-18  csb 

Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Give careful thought to do what is honorable in everyone’s eyes. If possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone.

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john 14:27  csb 

"Peace I leave with you. My peace I give to you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Don’t let your heart be troubled or fearful.

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my notes:

matthew 10:32-39  esv 

So everyone who acknowledges Me before men, I also will acknowledge before My Father Who is in Heaven, but whoever denies Me before men, I also will deny before My Father Who is in Heaven.

"Do not think that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I have not come to bring peace, but a sword. For I have come to set a man against his father, and a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law. And a person’s enemies will be those of his own household. Whoever loves father or mother more than Me is not worthy of Me, and whoever loves son or daughter more than Me is not worthy of Me. And whoever does not take his cross and follow Me is not worthy of Me. Whoever finds his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life for My sake will find it.

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john 9:39-41  esv 

Jesus said, "For judgment I came into this world, that those who do not see may see, and those who see may become blind."

Some of the Pharisees near Him heard these things, and said to Him, "Are we also blind?"

Jesus said to them, "If you were blind, you would have no guilt; but now that you say, ‘We see,’ your guilt remains.

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matthew 9:12-13  esv 

But when He heard it, He said, "Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick. Go and learn what this means, ‘I desire mercy, and not sacrifice.’ For I came not to call the righteous, but sinners."

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my notes:

i corinthians 3:3  nas 

...for you are still fleshly. For since there is jealousy and strife among you, are you not fleshly, and are you not walking like mere men?

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galatians 4:16  esv 

Have I then become your enemy by telling you the truth?

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i corinthians 11:19  nas 

For there must also be factions among you, so that those who are approved may become evident among you.

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i corinthians 7:15  nlt 

But if the husband or wife who isn’t a believer insists on leaving, let them go. In such cases the Christian husband or wife is no longer bound to the other, for God has called you to live in peace.

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ephesians 2:14  esv 

For {Jesus} Himself is our peace, Who has made us both one and has broken down in His flesh the dividing wall of hostility...

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my notes:

section 5

The God of peace is with us in Jesus; thus we have His peace when we respond to our emotions God’s way, shape our thinking to His and practice walking as He walks  philippians 4:4-9 . Our inner peace directly comes from our trust, our relationship with the Lord  isaiah 26:3 , for peace is given to those who love God’s ways  psalm 119:165 . While hostility and conflict are born out of walking contrary to the Lord’s ways  isaiah 59:1-8 , ongoing peace with Lord and each other is the fruit of walking in the path of the Lord  isaiah 48:17-18 .

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reference scriptures

philippians 4:4-9  esv 

Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice. Let your reasonableness be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand; do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.

What you have learned and received and heard and seen in me—practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you.

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isaiah 26:3  nlt 

You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in You, all whose thoughts are fixed on You!

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psalm 119:165  esv 

Great peace have those who love Your law; nothing can make them stumble.

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isaiah 59:1-8  esv 

Behold, the LORD’s hand is not shortened, that it cannot save, or His ear dull, that it cannot hear; but your iniquities have made a separation between you and your God, and your sins have hidden His face from you so that He does not hear.

For your hands are defiled with blood and your fingers with iniquity; your lips have spoken lies; your tongue mutters wickedness. No one enters suit justly; no one goes to law honestly; they rely on empty pleas, they speak lies, they conceive mischief and give birth to iniquity. They hatch adders’ eggs; they weave the spider’s web; he who eats their eggs dies, and from one that is crushed a viper is hatched. Their webs will not serve as clothing; men will not cover themselves with what they make. Their works are works of iniquity, and deeds of violence are in their hands.

Their feet run to evil, and they are swift to shed innocent blood; their thoughts are thoughts of iniquity; desolation and destruction are in their highways.

The way of peace they do not know, and there is no justice in their paths; they have made their roads crooked; no one who treads on them knows peace. Therefore justice is far from us, and righteousness does not overtake us; we hope for light, and behold, darkness, and for brightness, but we walk in gloom.

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isaiah 48:17-18  esv 

Thus says the LORD, your Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel: "I am the LORD your God, Who teaches you to profit, Who leads you in the way you should go. Oh that you had paid attention to My commandments! Then your peace would have been like a river, and your righteousness like the waves of the sea...

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my notes:

section 6

Let us understand and practice the Truth that PEACE is a good, godly relationship between individuals  colossians 1:21-23   philemon 15-17  that is characterized by harmony  i peter 3:8 , mutual respect  romans 12:10 , mutual concern  ii corinthians 12:15 , mutual faithfulness  i samuel 20:14-15 , mutual love  i samuel 20:17, 42 , mutual benefitting  romans 14:17-19 , all with confidence and freedom between each other  numbers 6:24-26   hebrews 4:16   philemon 21   ii corinthians 6:11-13, 7:2-4  brought about through Jesus Christ Who is our peace between any one individual and God  romans 5:1-2  and also with each other  ephesians 2:13-19 .

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reference scriptures

colossians 1:21-23  esv 

And you, who once were alienated and hostile in mind, doing evil deeds, He has now reconciled in His body of flesh by His death, in order to present you holy and blameless and above reproach before Him, if indeed you continue in the faith, stable and steadfast, not shifting from the hope of the Gospel that you heard, which has been proclaimed in all creation under heaven, and of which I, Paul, became a minister.

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philemon 15-17  nlt 

It seems Onesimus ran away for a little while so that you could have him back forever. He is no longer like a slave to you. He is more than a slave, for he is a beloved brother, especially to me. Now he will mean much more to you, both as a man and as a brother in the Lord.

So if you consider me your partner, welcome him as you would welcome me.

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i peter 3:8  niv84 

Finally, all of you, live in harmony with one another; be sympathetic, love as brothers, be compassionate and humble.

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romans 12:10  esv 

Love one another with brotherly affection. Outdo one another in showing honor.

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ii corinthians 12:15  esv 

I will most gladly spend and be spent for your souls. If I love you more, am I to be loved less?

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i samuel 20:14-15  esv 

If I am still alive, show me the steadfast love of the LORD, that I may not die; and do not cut off your steadfast love from my house forever, when the LORD cuts off every one of the enemies of David from the face of the earth.

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i samuel 20:17, 42  nlt 

And Jonathan made David reaffirm his vow of friendship again, for Jonathan loved David as he loved himself.

At last Jonathan said to David, "Go in peace, for we have sworn loyalty to each other in the LORD’s name. The LORD is the witness of a bond between us and our children forever." Then David left, and Jonathan returned to the town.

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romans 14:17-19  nlt 

For the Kingdom of God is not a matter of what we eat or drink, but of living a life of goodness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit. If you serve Christ with this attitude, you will please God, and others will approve of you, too. So then, let us aim for harmony in the church and try to build each other up.

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numbers 6:24-26  esv 

The LORD bless you and keep you; the LORD make His face to shine upon you and be gracious to you; the LORD lift up His countenance upon you and give you peace.

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hebrews 4:16  esv 

Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.

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philemon 21  esv 

Confident of your obedience, I write to you, knowing that you will do even more than I say.

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ii corinthians 6:11-13, 7:2-4  niv84 

We have spoken freely to you, Corinthians, and opened wide our hearts to you. We are not withholding our affection from you, but you are withholding yours from us. As a fair exchange--I speak as to my children--open wide your hearts also.

Make room for us in your hearts. We have wronged no one, we have corrupted no one, we have exploited no one. I do not say this to condemn you; I have said before that you have such a place in our hearts that we would live or die with you. I have great confidence in you; I take great pride in you. I am greatly encouraged; in all our troubles my joy knows no bounds.

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romans 5:1-2  esv 

Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. Through Him we have also obtained access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we rejoice in hope of the glory of God.

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my notes:

ephesians 2:13-19  esv 

But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ. 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.

And He came and preached peace to you who were far off and peace to those who were near. For through Him we both have access in one Spirit to the Father. So then you are no longer strangers and aliens, but you are fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God...

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my notes:

further study and discussion questions:

section 7

What is a better, more pleasant way to live?  proverbs 17:1 

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proverbs 17:1  nlt 

Better a dry crust eaten in peace than a house filled with feasting—and conflict.

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How would such a view shape your priorities and pursuits?

Discuss how thankfulness towards God can build up peace in your heart?  colossians 3:15 

colossians 3:15  esv 

And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful.

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How is our redemption and a covenant of relationship with the Lord afford us peace?  isaiah 54:5-13  Discuss why relationships are the point of peace and why peace is the foundation of relationships.

my notes:

isaiah 54:5-13  esv 

For your Maker is your husband, the LORD of hosts is His name; and the Holy One of Israel is your Redeemer, the God of the whole earth He is called. For the LORD has called you like a wife deserted and grieved in spirit, like a wife of youth when she is cast off, says your God. For a brief moment I deserted you, but with great compassion I will gather you. In overflowing anger for a moment I hid my face from you, but with everlasting love I will have compassion on you," says the LORD, your Redeemer.

"This is like the days of Noah to Me: as I swore that the waters of Noah should no more go over the earth, so I have sworn that I will not be angry with you, and will not rebuke you. For the mountains may depart and the hills be removed, but my steadfast love shall not depart from you, and My covenant of peace shall not be removed," says the LORD, Who has compassion on you.

"O afflicted one, storm-tossed and not comforted, behold, I will set your stones in antimony, and lay your foundations with sapphires. I will make your pinnacles of agate, your gates of carbuncles, and all your wall of precious stones. All your children shall be taught by the LORD, and great shall be the peace of your children.

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How might one find more joy in their life?  proverbs 12:20 

proverbs 12:20  csb 

Deceit is in the hearts of those who plot evil, but those who promote peace have joy.

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my notes:

What refreshes hearts and reinvigorates our service to the Lord and each other?  psalm 133:1-3  Discuss how you can encourage this in your homes and in the church family.

psalm 133:1-3  csb 

How delightfully good when brothers live together in harmony! It is like fine oil on the head, running down on the beard, running down Aaron’s beard onto his robes. It is like the dew of Hermon falling on the mountains of Zion. For there the Lord has appointed the blessing— life forevermore.

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Even if others will not be at peace with you. What effort can you make to still be at peace in the presence of your enemies?  proverbs 16:7   psalm 23:5-6   psalm 37:11 

proverbs 16:7  esv 

When a man’s ways please the LORD, he makes even his enemies to be at peace with him.

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psalm 23:5-6  esv 

You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; you anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, and I shall dwell in the house of the LORD forever.

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psalm 37:11  esv 

But the meek shall inherit the land and delight themselves in abundant peace.

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my notes:

How are we blessed?  matthew 5:9  What brings about a harvest of righteousness in the home and the church family?  james 3:17-18 

matthew 5:9  esv 

Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God.

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james 3:17-18  esv 

But the wisdom from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, open to reason, full of mercy and good fruits, impartial and sincere. And a harvest of righteousness is sown in peace by those who make peace.

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my notes:

a tip to start pursuing peace:

section 8

Think of one specific pride or selfishness that you are not peaceable towards another. Confess your struggle to God  i john 1:9  and at least one friend so that they can pray for you  james 5:16 . What can you do to make it right? Then go make the effort to make it right  proverbs 28:13   proverbs 16:6   proverbs 14:9   matthew 5:23-26 .

i john 1:9  esv 

If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

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james 5:16  esv 

Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working.

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proverbs 28:13  esv 

Whoever conceals his transgressions will not prosper, but he who confesses and forsakes them will obtain mercy.

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proverbs 16:6  esv 

By steadfast love and faithfulness iniquity is atoned for, and by the fear of the LORD one turns away from evil.

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my notes:

proverbs 14:9  csb 

Fools mock at making reparation, but there is goodwill among the upright.

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matthew 5:23-26  esv 

So if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there before the altar and go. First be reconciled to your brother, and then come and offer your gift. Come to terms quickly with your accuser while you are going with him to court, lest your accuser hand you over to the judge, and the judge to the guard, and you be put in prison.

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my notes: