gospel reflection

Peace Be With You

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The four gospels tell us that after the Good Friday incident, namely Jesus’ death, many of his disciples were filled with fear, uncertainties and hopelessness; they locked themselves inside. Even though Jesus rose to life on the first day of the week, his disciples were still stuck in the experience they had a few days ago. In this context, Jesus appeared to them and offered his peace: “Peace be with you.” The phrase “peace be with you” is just not merely a greeting; it also brings something else quite significant to Jesus’ disciples and also to us.

1. Jesus uses peace to address fear.

John 20:19 says: “On the evening of that first day of the week, when the disciples were together, with the doors locked for fear of the Jewish leaders.” Jesus knew that they were afraid and he gave them peace. There are many times in life, we are also fearful, anxious, worried; Jesus wants to show up and to give us peace. “Peace be with you” will transcend life’s circumstance and settles down our out of control emotions.

2. Jesus gives peace through challenges.

The disciples locked themselves in, but Jesus came in and gave them peace. It was not them asking him for peace, no, Jesus was actively offering his divine peace to them. Psalm 34:18 truly expresses God’s love for us all: “The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.” Whenever we experience any fear and anxiety, God looks to hold us close. He is waiting to give us peace, not only at that moment, but through challenges’ times.

3. Jesus uses peace to secure purpose.

After strengthening his disciples with peace, Jesus encourages them to move out of the fearful environment: “Again Jesus said, ‘Peace be with you! As the Father has sent me, I am sending you ‘” (Jn 20:21). Jesus wanted them to understand that there was purpose and meaning of life and that life was more than the fear they were experiencing. His peace was enough to move them away from the locked door. In the same way, Jesus invites us not to stay strapped by our unrest and fear. He wants us to live a happy and joyful life. Let Jesus’ peace transform our life.

Jesus offered peace to his early church, he is offering the same gift to us. Let’s open our hearts to receive it.

Fr Do

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