The Peace Of Jesus
As Jesus overlooked Jerusalem on His last trip into that city, He openly wept for Jerusalem, and said, among other things, "If you had known, . . . the things that make for your peace!" (Luke 19:41-42). The implication was, of course, that the chosen people of Jerusalem and Israel should have known from the Scriptures that Jesus, as the Messiah, brought them everlasting peace, but they missed it. To their devastation! And that peace seems still to be getting missed today.
Of what was Jesus speaking? We know that peace was a common Old Testament word. But there were prophesies in The Prophets which specifically referred to Jesus' coming: 1) one of His names was the "Prince of Peace" (Isa 9:6); 2) when "the Spirit is poured upon us from on high, . . . the work of righteousness will be peace" (Isa 32:15-17); 3) "the chastisement for our peace (NIV: the punishment that brought us peace) was upon Him" (Isa 53:5); 4) there would be future rejoicing in Jerusalem, who would be "extended peace like a river" (Isa 66:12) 5) the LORD told captive Israel that He had good thoughts for them, "thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope." (Jer 29:11); and 6) the LORD promised Israel one Shepherd, through David, and a "covenant of peace" (Ezek 34:23-25). These are just some of the examples of Old Testament promises of peace for God's chosen people, often through the coming of the Messiah.
Peace is a great thing. But the peace of the Bible is the Hebrew peace, which is far more than the definitions of peace in English and the Greek. Webster's says that peace is "calm and quiet" or harmony and/or lack of hostilities between peoples. But in Hebrew, peace, which is the well-known word "shalom," is much deeper and much more. "Shalom" is defined as "completeness, good welfare, wholeness in every aspect of life." Nothing more is needed. Something that has such peace has been made whole or is completely finished. We don't have a single word in English that describes the perfect essence of Hebrew peace. That perfect wholeness was what Jesus had brought for Israel, but the people did not know. (Now think of what we pray for when we "pray for the peace of Jerusalem" (Ps 122:8). It's a little different, isn't it?)
How about us as Christians? How many of us have that perfect peace in Jesus? Remember, He told us, His disciples, "Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you" (John 14:27), and "that in Me you may have peace" (John 16:33). That is "shalom"-peace. And Jesus came to bring us the Kingdom of God which He told us was "within you" (Luke 17:21). Paul elucidated this by saying that the Kingdom of God is "righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit." (Rom 14:17). Hebrew peace is ours in Jesus; do we know? Remember, Jesus said, "It is finished." as He died on the cross (John 19:30); that was His final gift of peace to us from His life on earth.
So Jesus' peace is a gift He gave us with His Kingdom. It is the "shalom"-peace of Israel, ready for us to accept at any time through faith in Christ. It is a peace from God that truly "surpasses all understanding" (Philip 4:6-7). We must let go of everything, and give it all to Jesus. Then His peace will fill us with wholeness and completeness. "The Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not want." (Ps 23:1). His peace gives everything. Once we have experienced that, there is no turning back; we will never let it go. Jerusalem missed its peace from Jesus, and fell into ruin. We must not do the same!
10/19/2013 12:53:42 am
Thanks, Harv. I have a post on by blog called Chaos to Order which I wrote years ago in light of the "earth was formless and void" phrase which is in Genesis 1. Part of the insight that I was going on was that of some of the historical Jewish teachers, who related this to the "chaos" that we're talking about (imagine that!). Funny that we're looking at these things again at this time and that there is a real richness as we allow some of these precepts to flavor the ongoing revelation. Blessings, Grover
Leave a Reply.
This is a forum where daily insights may be posted by various contributors for reading and comment.
Each day requires fresh manna from heaven which the Holy Spirit makes available to us. This forum is a place to post scripture, insight and wisdom from God which might be manna to you and others.