The Lord gives peace(Judges 6:1~24)
The fourth Name of God that brings us a lot of comfort is Jehovah Shalom.
It means “the Lord will give us peace” or “the Lord gives us rest.”
The history behind this name of God gives us encouragement.
To know the meaning of the name of God, I would like to continue talking about Israelites in the Bible.
As long as the people of Israel followed God and He took care of them.
The Israelites enjoyed peace for forty years.
But as time passed, they forgot all the things that God had done for them and turned away from God again.
They went back to their evil ways and God left them.
So the Lord let the Midianites conquer Israel and rule over the people.
The Midianites were cruel to the Israelites, stealing their grain and animals and ruining their land.
The Israelites could not grow any more crops for food, so they had nothing to eat.
And they hid in the mountains, and were afraid to stay in the open place.
As a result the Israelites were weak from hunger and fear for their lives.
They lived like this for seven years.
At last the Israelites realized that they needed God. So they cried out to God for help.
Then God had mercy on them again and chose Gideon to be the next judge of Israel.
One day the angel of the Lord came to sit under an oak tree and watched Gideon.
Gideon had some grain and he was trying to thresh wheat in secret, out of sight of the Midianites.
The Lord said to Gideon, ‘God is with you, mighty warrior!’
Gideon asked, ‘If He is, why are all these terrible things happening to us?’
The Lord replied, ‘You can change that. God wants you to save Israel from the Midianites.’
The angel of the Lord was speaking for God Himself.
Gideon prepared an offering for the angel.
Then the angel of the Lord told him to put the offering on a rock.
When Gideon did this, fire flamed up and burned the offering.
Then Gideon realized that he had been talking to the angel of the Lord.
So he shouted, “Oh, Lord GOD! I have seen the angel of the Lord face to face!”
But the angel of the Lord said to Gideon, “Peace! Do not be afraid. You are not going to die.”
And Gideon built an altar to the Lord there and named it Jehovah-Shalom which means “the Lord is peace.”
As it is the name Jehovah Shalom originated when Israelites were suffering.
We have to pray that when we go through difficult times, then we will feel great His comfort in it.
Difficult times can happen to everyone. Pain and loss are a part of our lives.
There are many different reasons why these things break out, but God is always there to bring good out of it when we invite Him to.
If we understand the different possibilities for our suffering, it will help us overcome our pain and see that our faith grow in the midst of it.
I would like to tell you four good reasons for difficult times and how we can overcome that time.
1. Sometimes difficult things happen to us so that the glory and power of God can be revealed in and through us.
When Jesus passed by a man who was born in blind, His disciples asked Him if the man’s blindness was because he had sinned or because his parents had sinned.
Jesus replied, “Neither this man nor his parents sinned, but that the works of God should be revealed in him.”(John 9:3)
We may not be able to understand why certain things are happening at the time and we may never know why we have to go through them.
But if we turn to God in difficult situations, God’s glory will be seen in them and on you.
2. God uses difficult time to purify us.
The Bible says, “Christ suffered while he was in his body.
So you should strengthen yourselves with the same kind of thinking Christ had.
The one who accepts suffering in this life has clearly decided to stop sinning.”(1 Peter 4:1)
This means our suffering during difficult times will burn sin out of our lives.
God allows suffering to happen so that we will pursue His will and not our own.
It is not pleasant at the time, but God’s desire is “that we may become Holy like Jesus Christ” through our sufferings.
3. Sometimes our misery is caused by God disciplining us.
Hebrews 12:11 says, “No discipline is enjoyable while it is happening—it’s painful! But afterward there will be a peaceful harvest of right living for those who are trained in this way.”
The fruit produced by this godly disciplining and painful pruning in us is worthy.
We have to go through to get it and we have to be careful not to resist it or hate it.
Hebrews 12:5~6 also says “My child, don’t think the Lord’s discipline is worth nothing, and don’t stop trying when he corrects you.
The Lord disciplines everyone he loves; he punishes everyone he accepts as a child.”
4. Sometimes we are caught in the midst of the enemy’s work.
It is the enemy’s delight to make you miserable and try to destroy your life.
Often the reason for the anguish, sorrow, sadness, grief, or pain you feel is entirely his doing and no fault of your own or anyone else’s.
Your comfort comes from knowing that He will defeat the enemy and bring good out of it that you can not even guess.
He wants you to walk with Him in faith as He leads you through it, and He will teach you to trust Him in the midst of it.
Our enemies, the devil hate it when we worship the Lord.
It repels him and makes him miserable. It confuses him and makes him weak.
That is why he will do anything to divert our attention away from worshiping and praising God.
We know who my God is. And we know who my enemy is.
I know more about the weapons God has given us to fight, resist, and defeat him.
The greatest weapons are God’s Word, prayer, and praise and worship.
The Word says, James 4:7, “Submit yourselves to God. Resist the devil, and devil will flee from you.”
One of the ways we submit to God is by worshiping Him.
One of the ways we resist the enemy is by proclaiming that God is the Lord.
God blesses us with His presence when we worship Him, and in His presence we are kept safe.
Psalm 31:20, “You hide them in the shelter of your presence, safe from those who conspire against them.”
We must remember what Jesus did.
We learned not only Jesus had defeated Satan on the cross, but also Jesus gave us the authority in His name to stand against him.
Fear is something that comes upon us the moment when we don’t believe that God is able to keep us, or we are in His safe.
When Jesus was at sea with His disciples and a storm came up, He responded to their terror by saying, “Why are you fearful, O you of little faith”(Matthew 8:26).
He wants us to believe that our boat won’t sink if He is in it with us.
If we take God’s hand in those difficult times, He will lift us up above our circumstances to the place of comfort, warmth, safety, and peace He has for us.
Our God has already given us His name Jehovah Shalom and that name will give you comfort and peace.
You would rather to praise and worship God than be afraid when you go through difficult times.