Do not suppose that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I did not come to bring peace, but a sword. (Matthew 10:34 NIV) –Jesus
Since Descending into What? was posted over a week ago, have we seen chaos increase or decrease? A glance at recent headlines reveals the precipitous fall continues–only faster. For example, there was a likely terrorist-related air disaster over the Mediterranean; Venezuela, once a paradise for socialism, was described this week as “a living hell”; and American intelligence reported China’s nuclear subs are ready to terrorize the South China Sea and the Pacific, waters vital to the nation’s interests. If that’s not enough, days ago, China sent a warning to the U.S. that her military is prepared for war if provoked.
End time events will happen so fast, heads will spin. While the world seems eager to fulfill last day’s prophecy of “wars and rumors of wars”, the Lord is preparing his sword. Soon the earth will have its great war. This war of all wars must occur before the 1000-year reign of Christ can begin.
The Prince of Peace alone has the power to halt our fall into oblivion. This is seen in “Shalom”, the traditional Hebrew greeting. Its meaning is more comprehensive than simply “peace”. Shalom implies “well-being, prosperity and rest”–in other words, the full blessing of God. Shalom is a synonym for “perfect peace” (Isaiah 26:3) or “the peace of God” (Philippians 4:7). This is chaos’ opposite.
A sword (Matthew 10:34) is the Lord’s instrument for bringing peace. Tent Stake Ministries and others explain the composite meaning of the three Hebrew characters from which Shalom is derived. Shin, Lamed and Mem reveal how peace comes. Our Prince “destroys the authority that brings the chaos”.* In his first epistle, John described it this way: “The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the devil’s work.” (3:8b NIV)
The saints also have a large role in overcoming confusion’s source (Revelation 12:11, Romans 16:20). Darkness, deceit, terrible times, death and chaos will have increasing power. Far from doom-and-gloom, our world’s downward-direction shows that He who bears the two-edged sword must soon appear to bring relief to the righteous and disaster to the wicked (2 Thessalonians 1:5-7). When all Christ’s enemies become a footstool for his feet, then the Kingdom will usher in an unprecedented age of glorious “shalom” peace to men on whom God’s favor rests (Luke 2:14).
*Thanks to Brother YY for his insightful teaching on Shin, Lamed and Mem or שׁום .