ˇ§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.ˇ¨ Judges 6:24
Gideon was afraid of the raid of the Midianites, so he threshed wheat in the winepress. God revealed to him and delegated him as a new judge of the Israelites. By the help of God, Gideon delivered Godˇ¦s people from the oppression of the enemies. Gideon didnˇ¦t feel surprise when he first met the Angel of the Lord, because he had no personal experience with God. To him, all the things about the Lord were only stories and experiences of his forefathers. God seemed to have forsaken His people, allowing them to suffer under the enemiesˇ¦ control. After he saw the miracle that God performed before his eyes, he turned to fear God. He also built an altar for God, naming it as Jehovah-shalom (the Lord is Peace). It was because he experienced Godˇ¦s mercy and peace.
When we as Godˇ¦s people fall into situations such as loneliness, fear, danger, anxiety, distress, pain, pressure, despair, guilt, shame, failure and weakness, we should remember that He is still with us, giving us peace.
The divine presence at Bethel (Genesis 28:10-22). Jacob deceived his brother and father. He adopted a cunning method to take away the birth right from his brother, a blessing of the first-born son from his father. Finally, he paid a high price for all the things he had done. In order to escape from the knife of his brother, he left home and embarked on a long journey, seeking shelter from his uncle. In the lonely and fearful night, God showed his presence, promised him protection, provisions and peace.
The divine presence at Mizpah (1 Samuel 7:5-13). Under the spiritual guidance of Samuel, the Israelites turned toward God. They assembled at Mizpah, fasted, prayed and confessed their sins to God. By that time, the Philistines came up to attack them. The people of Israel cried out to God and He answered their prayer. God struck with loud thunder against the Philistines so that they were defeated by the Israelites. Whenever men turn to God by confessing their sins, God of Ebenezer (meaning thus far has the Lord helped us.) will show His mercy and peace to them.
The divine presence at Ziklag (1 Samuel 30:1-25). When King Saul chased after David, he was afraid for his life. Consequently, he sought help from his enemies. He deceived the king of Philistines, Achish and won his trust. God disciplined David by giving all the families and belongings of David and his followers to the Amalekites. When David was under great distress, pain, pressure and the complaints of his men, he sought help from God. God answered his prayer, turning the dangerous situation into a peaceful ending.
The divine presence by the Sea of Tiberias (John 21:1-14). After the suffering and death of Jesus, His disciples felt guilty and shameful. They were afraid and confused. Under the leadership of Simon Peter, some of them went fishing. After a whole night of hard labor, they got nothing. When they were desperate and fatigued, the Lord Jesus Christ revealed His presence, granted them a full net of large fish, and prepared them breakfast. The Son of God provided warm shelter and bread for His disciples whose souls were weak. The Lord is full of compassion and grants peace to those who seek Him.
Dear friends, if you are really the children of God, and you are in one of the above situations, please do not forget the kindness of our Heavenly Father. Trust in Him. God is willing to give you peace.
"The LORD bless you and keep you; the LORD make his face shine upon you and be gracious to you; the LORD turn his face toward you and give you peace.ˇ¨ (Numbers 6:24-26)
By: Daniel To