When Gideon realized that it was the angel of the Lord, he exclaimed, “Alas, Sovereign Lord! I have seen the angel of the Lord face to face!”
But the Lord said to him, “Peace! Do not be afraid. You are not going to die.”
So Gideon built an altar to the Lord there and called it The Lord Is Peace.
Judges 6: 22 – 24
Yahweh Shalom – The Lord is Peace – means that the Lord is sound or complete. Shalom is more than the absence of strife, it is wholeness in every aspect of life. His peace is given by grace and not something deserved or earned. Israel was oppressed by the Midianites because of their own wickedness and the Lord gave them into the hands of the Midianites for seven years. We so often blame the devil for things going wrong in our lives when, in fact, it’s the hand of the Lord dealing with us. It’s by his grace that his anger lasts only a moment, but his favour lasts a lifetime; weeping may stay for the night, but rejoicing comes in the morning. (Psalm 30: 5). God called Gideon, the least in his family, which was the least in his clan, which was the least of the tribe of Manasseh, to overthrow the Midianites and set the Israelites free from oppression. He didn’t feel like the mighty warrior that the Lord saw him as. His heart wasn’t at peace at this moment.
You may be oppressed in some way, struggling, and feeling broken. The Lord wants you to know his peace, his completeness, his wholeness, in your life. It didn’t just happen with the Israelites; they cried out to him and he answered. He waited for the Israelites to cry out to him in Egypt and it has always been his pattern to subjugate people until they see their need for him. We can complain and groan about our situations as much as we want to, but we’ll never know his peace until we cry out to him and wait for him to answer. His answer to our cries may come very differently to what we expect, but he always answers in the way that he does to reveal his glory. Us receiving peace is a by-product of his glory. If we have him, we have peace, and if we don’t have him we don’t have peace. He is the Prince of Peace.
For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counsellor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the greatness of his government and peace there will be no end. Isaiah 9: 6 – 7
This child to be born about 750 years later was Jesus, who said, “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.” John 14: 27
Will you come to him today to give him all your brokenness and strife and let him fill you with His peace, his wholeness? Cry out to him in earnestness for he will hear the cries of the earnest seeker, and he will answer for he is Yahweh Shalom, The Lord is Peace.