Now may the God of peace himself sanctify you completely, and may your whole spirit and soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. He who calls you is faithful; he will surely do it.1 Thessalonians 5;22-23
A benediction is literally a “good word,” but the dictionary defines it as “the utterance or bestowing of a blessing, especially at the end of a religious service.”
That good word is what is found in the two brief verses near the end of Paul’s first letter to the Thessalonians and it is filled with dependence on God.
First, it is God who sanctifies us completely through every part of us – our spirit and soul and body – everything. Yes, God invites us in on the process by the way we lead our lives, but He is in control.
Second, Paul wanted the Thessalonians (and us) to be “blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.” Blameless thanks to Christ, not my own ability, because anyone who knows me is quite sure I am anything but blameless.
Third, we can depend on God because He is faithful. If he makes a promise, “He will surely do it.”
Paul’s words are intended to encourage us to live in such a way as described in the Proverb-
Trust in the LORD with all your heart,Proverbs 3:5-6
and do not lean on your own understanding.
In all your ways acknowledge him,
and he will make straight your paths.