Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus, who, being in the form of God, did not consider it robbery to be equal with God, but made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men. And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross. Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
Jehovah Shalom – The Lord Our Peace
Judges 6:22-24 – Now Gideon perceived that He was the Angel of the Lord. So Gideon said, “Alas, O Lord God! For I have seen the Angel of the Lord face to face.” Then the Lord said to him, “Peace be with you; do not fear, you shall not die.” So Gideon built an altar there to the Lord, and called it The-Lord-Is-Peace. To this day it is still in Ophrah of the Abiezrites.
Judges 6:11-16 – Now the Angel of the Lord came and sat under the terebinth tree which was in Ophrah, which belonged to Joash the Abiezrite, while his son Gideon threshed wheat in the winepress, in order to hide it from the Midianites. And the Angel of the Lord appeared to him, and said to him, “The Lord is with you, you mighty man of valor!” Gideon said to Him, “O my lord, if the Lord is with us, why then has all this happened to us? And where are all His miracles which our fathers told us about, saying, ‘Did not the Lord bring us up from Egypt?’ But now the Lord has forsaken us and delivered us into the hands of the Midianites.” Then the Lord turned to him and said, “Go in this might of yours, and you shall save Israel from the hand of the Midianites. Have I not sent you?” So he said to Him, “O my Lord, how can I save Israel? Indeed my clan is the weakest in Manasseh, and I am the least in my father’s house.” And the Lord said to him, “Surely I will be with you, and you shall defeat the Midianites as one man.”
Gideon questioned: “If the Lord is with us, why?”
Do we not often question God? Why has all this happened? Why am I going through this?
- In the midst of the struggle He will be with you – He will be your peace
- In the midst of the testing, He will be with you – He will be your peace
- In the midst of the turmoil, heartache, loss, bereavement, loneliness, pain, sickness, He will be with you – He is your peace!
It is only in times of struggle, turmoil, hurt, defeat, that we truly know His peace. (If everything was always great, if nothing went wrong, you would not know His peace because you would not have known pain and sorrow.) Could the Kennedys, the Rockefellers, the Queen of England ever know poverty? They have everything they want at the slightest whim. How can they really measure wealth? They have known nothing else.
The reason for the Israelites’ affliction by the Midianites can be found in Judges.
Judges 2:1-5 – Then the Angel of the Lord came up from Gilgal to Bochim, and said: “I led you up from Egypt and brought you to the land of which I swore to your fathers; and I said, ‘I will never break My covenant with you. And you shall make no covenant with the inhabitants of this land; you shall tear down their altars.’ But you have not obeyed My voice. Why have you done this? Therefore I also said, ‘I will not drive them out before you; but they shall be thorns in your side, and their gods shall be a snare to you.’” So it was, when the Angel of the Lord spoke these words to all the children of Israel, that the people lifted up their voices and wept. Then they called the name of that place Bochim; and they sacrificed there to the Lord.
Their affliction was due to their lack of obedience to do what God told them to do. They had idolatry to continue in the land they had been promised.
Gideon was being prepared to exercise obedience. God saw in him a desire to do what was right. God used him to destroy idolatry.
Judges 6:25-26 – Now it came to pass the same night that the Lord said to him, “Take your father’s young bull, the second bull of seven years old, and tear down the altar of Baal that your father has, and cut down the wooden image that is beside it; and build an altar to the Lord your God on top of this rock in the proper arrangement, and take the second bull and offer a burnt sacrifice with the wood of the image which you shall cut down.”
When you are going through a time of trouble ask yourself:
- What is God trying to prepare me for?
- What is God trying to show me?
- What can I learn from this experience?
He will be your peace. This “Prince of Peace” will be your peace.
Ephesians 2:14-15 – For He Himself is our peace, who has made both one, and has broken down the middle wall of separation, having abolished in His flesh the enmity, that is, the law of commandments contained in ordinances, so as to create in Himself one new man from the two, thus making peace,
John 14:27- Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.
2 Thessalonians 3:16 – Now may the Lord of peace Himself give you peace always in every way. The Lord be with you all.
Psalm 4:8 – I will both lie down in peace, and sleep; for You alone, O Lord, make me dwell in safety.
Instead of counting sheep, talk to the shepherd.
1 Corinthians 7:15 – Great peace have those who love Your law, and nothing causes them to stumble.
Isaiah 26:3 – You will keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on You, because he trusts in You.
Colossians 3:15 – And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to which also you were called in one body; and be thankful.