Summary: Gideon was fearful, but discovered that “The Lord Is Peace” (Hebrew – Jehovah-Shalom); he therefore built an altar to the Lord with that very name.
Compiled by: Herman Abrahams (Senior Pastor), Cornerstone Faith Ministries, P.O. Box 740, Westridge 7802, Rep. of South Africa.
Note to the reader:
If you have been blessed with this sermon compilation, I would be honoured to receive an e-mail from you merely telling me where in the world you are based- I do not need any other information. This is merely so that I can have the pleasure of giving thanks to Almighty God that all over the globe the ministry which he has entrusted to me, is blessing the body of Christ and helping to extend the Kingdom of God. Thank you. Herman Abrahams, Cape Town, South Africa.
Series: Names & Titles of God and Jesus
Read: Judges 6:1-24
So Gideon built an altar to the LORD there and called it, “The LORD is Peace.” To this day it stands in Ophrah of the Abiezrites.
Gideon was fearful, but discovered that “The Lord Is Peace” ( Hebrew – Jehovah-Shalom); he therefore built an altar to the Lord with that very name. The Israelites were under severe oppression from the Midianites, who invaded their country, destroyed their crops and killed off all their livestock (vs. 2-4). The strength of Midianite oppression forced the Israelites to hide themselves and their produce in “mountain clefts, caves, and strongholds” (vs. 2). Gideon was probably stressed out because of fear of the Midianites; he was threshing wheat in a winepress, something that was not normally done (vs 11). Usually wheat was threshed on top of a hill so that the wind could blow the chaff away.
The angel of the Lord came and sat down under an oak tree where Gideon was threshing the wheat and said to him, “The Lord is with you, mighty worrior” (“mighty man of valour” KJV) (vs 11-12). This news must have been confusing to Gideon because if the Lord was with Israel, “why has all this happened” to them?. Gideon therefore starts an argument with the angel of the Lord. He hears that he is the one whom God was sending to save the people of Israel out of the hand of Midian (vs 14). This probably confused Gideon even further and fear must have increased within him, because in his own eyes he was just an insignificant individual, yet God was choosing him for such a mammoth task. Then the angel of the Lord revealed his power and Gideon came to the realisation that he had been arguing with God himself (vs 22). His fear is now centred around the fact that, having seen the Lord “face to face”, he was going to die. It is then that he hears those comforting words, “Peace! Do not be afraid. You are not going to die.” (vs 23)
Fear can paralyze us to the extent where we cannot be effective in life or ministry for the Lord. If we are not watchful, then fear will rob us of fulfilling the purposes of God for our lives. What is it that you are fearful of? Is it the thought that God may ask you to do something which you feel you are not capable of? Is it fear of what the future holds? Is it fear of other people? You need to know that “The Lord is Peace”. Jehovah-Shalom is able to deal with all your fears. Remember, as with Gideon, God is the enabler. He will be with you and He will strengthen you for the task that lies ahead.
Commit your fears and anxieties to the Lord in prayer:
Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
Prayer is the antidote to worry. When you submit your prayers and petitions to God with thanksgiving in your heart, an amazing thing happens: the peace of God floods your troubled soul. This peace transcends all understanding, that is, it is beyond human comprehension. This peace guards the believers. The word guard translates a military term which means “to protect or garrison by guarding.” Like soldiers assigned to watch over an entrance, God’s peace will garrison, protect and watch over your hearts and your minds, that is, your emotions and your thoughts.
Put your trust in the Lord and focus your mind on Him:
You will keep in perfect peace him whose mind is steadfast, because he trusts in you.
The world can only offer grandiose dreams that never materialise; Jesus however, provides peace, a life of wholeness, security and hope through the power of the Holy Spirit:
Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.
Jehovah-Shalom I thank you for your peace,
which guards my heart and mind.