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 (Manna 20)
Formula for Peace
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Formula for Peace

Ephesians 4:2-3 says, “With all humility and gentleness, with patience, showing forbearance to one another in love, being diligent to preserve the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.”

Everyone has virtues and vices. We should admire others’ virtue and forget others’ vices. This helps us to bear with one another and will unite us in peace. If we only look at the vices of others and neglect to acknowledge their virtues, dissensions will arise. Some like to magnify the faults of others but Jesus said, “And why do you look at the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye?” (Mt 7:3-4) Some harp on the weaknesses of others. This is uncalled for. When we attack others on their weaknesses, we are actually showing our foolishness because in the eyes of God, we may have greater faults. Besides God, nobody has the right to criticize or to judge others. The Bible says, “And do you suppose this, O man, when you pass judgment upon those who practice such things and do the same yourself, that you will escape the judgment of God?” (Rom 2:3).

Christians too have conflicts with others in their daily lives. When others wrong us and cause us to suffer in one way or other, we should not retaliate or be depressed. Instead we should show “forbearance for one another in love”. This is the standard expected of us in the Bible. As long as we can practise this, we can lead a happy life. However forbearance involves love because without true love there will be no true forbearance. Forbearance is love manifested when others have wronged us. Forbearance is a virtue that must be in all Christians.

To show forbearance for one another in love is to overlook the faults of others and to hide them with love. This is however passive. Active forbearance requires one to learn the virtues of others. The church is a spiritual fellowship of believers. Believers should interact with one another and love one another. No one can isolate him from other brethren and lead a solitary Christian life. No part of the human body can be cut off and still function. We should admire and learn the virtues of others and forget the vices of others. Allow virtues to overshadow vices in order to live in peace.

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