“Great peace have those who love your law; nothing can make them stumble.” Psalms. 119:165

The English word ‘peace’ has a number of different nuances and can be legitimately used to describe a variety of situations. For example we often hear it being said of someone who passes away, “they are at peace now.’ Or, we might experience a ‘peace’ that nature provides when we escape the business of life in some natural tranquil location. Or, parents often know the ‘peace’ that permeates the home when the all the kids have gone to bed and ‘peace’ reigns at the end of a long day! In other words we use ‘peace’ to describe many situations. 

But the biblical use of ‘peace’ is on a higher level. The Hebrew word as in our text is the well-known word, ‘shalom.’ 

‘Shalom’ is not a feeling of peace we might have, as described above. That is how the world describes ‘peace.’ The world sees ‘peace’ as being merely a sense of calm and tranquility when all is going well. But as we know, that kind of peace can flourish even when lies and self - deception are at its core. Drugs, legal and illegal can induce a feeling s of peace. What I am getting at here is this; the peace the world offers is fleeting at best and is far short of the ‘shalom’ that comes from God.

‘Shalom’ has the idea of being complete. - or being at one with. This not a feeling by itself, although true ‘shalom,’ can trigger emotions of joy and contentment. The difference between worldly ‘peace’ and ‘shalom’ is that worldly peace is dependent on pleasant circumstances, whereas true ‘shalom’ is being dependent on the God of circumstances. 

In other words, if our trust is truly in the Lord, we will be enabled to ride the storms, of life with the ‘shalom’ of God at our side. Or as Paul said, in Philippians 4:7 ”And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”