by Katharine Weiss
Hebrew thought gives peace greater consideration than does Western ideology. Perhaps it is time for us to revisit the simple but profound promise of His shalom (John 14:26–31).
Jesus Himself is Sar Shalom, the Prince of Peace, so the overflow of His life through us includes this aspect of His Person. I have found, more and more in these days, that I need to draw on Him as Sar Shalom to release peace to calm the storms that life inevitably stirs up. During the complications of travel or the deep issues of loss with family and friends, I want to shower those around me with the love of God that is marked by His supernatural peace.
“Shalom” (Strong’s Concordance 7965) has a broad range of meanings, all of which can add to our spiritual growth. We see immediately that there are seven basic ideas that come from the word. This is not surprising, as seven is the bibli- cal number of wholeness, completion, and spiritual fullness!
The first meaning is just that, completeness. Peace from God includes the notion that all is present: everything needed by the person is there. Next we see the idea of wholeness. This has a full, rounded-out meaning: that His peace contains all we need. Shalom also implies health. How wonderful that physical health can be included in the shalom of God. Studies have shown the correlation between stress and illness.
This promise is precious because health holds a key to our ability to function and do all the things that God desires for us in our destiny with Him.
Fourthly, shalom indicates peace itself. The simple restful, deep engaging with our God is a fruit of His shalom. The fifth aspect of shalom is welfare. I am reminded of that old hymn, What a Friend We Have in Jesus. He is aware of our welfare and wants us to fare well in this life. The next part of this complex word is safety, soundness, and tranquility. The shalom of God provides a type of oasis from the surrounding events so that we can be tranquil in the face of whatever comes our way.
Finally, God’s shalom includes prosperity, perfection, fullness of rest, harmony, and the absence of agitation or discord. Wow! What a huge promise from Him.
As we walk in the peace of the Lord, note that this gift functions as an effective military weapon against the enemy of our souls. Paul left the Romans (16:20) with a reminder that the “God of peace” would soon bruise Satan under the feet of the Believers. Our adherence to His peace overcomes evil with good.
Article originally posted in the Levitt Letter