Everyone wants peace but some days it seems like an elusive dream. Yet Jesus declared in Jn 14 that “peace I leave with you, my peace I give to you” Well, what exactly did He mean?
In the Hebrew language the word for peace is “shalom.” You can actually still hear that word in use today. It’s commonly known that the word means peace but there is so much more to it than just that. The word “shalom” carries with it the idea of “wholeness” or “completeness,” a “well-being” in every part of you. To be completely at peace with God, the world, yourself, your family, your friends, your job, your situation in life… all this and more is meant by this world. To be mentally at rest, to be emotionally healthy, to be physically and spiritually whole – this is shalom.
Now, Jesus acknowledges that the world can give you a measure of peace when He said “I don’t give you as the world gives.” It can be very comforting to look at your house or bank account, to think of your job (or your spouse’s), to see your children doing well – these things can all give a measure of comfort and a sense of peace. But we all know it doesn’t last. A house can be broken in to or burn down, a job can be lost, a bank account can be seriously and quickly depleted, and children can break your heart. Sometimes we even think – one more dollar in the account and I can rest, this relationship will make me feel better, changing this job, removing this circumstance, this shopping trip… this will finally be it! But it never is.
The shalom peace that Jesus desires to gives lasts. It transcends our circumstances, it’s not dependent on what we buy, or have, or want or need. It is dependent upon God Himself and He is the One who declared He never changes. He is faithful when we are faithless. He is the All-powerful, all sufficient, guarantee-er of His Word, the Covenant Keeper, Yhwh Himself. This is our God who desires to give us His shalom – true complete whole peace no matter what.
Do you know this God, do you know this peace?