SHINE Daily

The Advent of Peace

Do you know how you got your name? My parents saw a painting by an artist named "Aaron Ashley" and thought it would be a good name for a boy or a girl (with a spelling adjustment). Pretty simple, right? What they didn't know when they chose it, is that "Erin" means "peace." And, as the middle child of the family, I was often the peacemaker. I’ve always felt a drive and a responsibility (I know it's from God) to help bring peace to situations, to mediate, or to help others so they can feel a sense of peace. And while I hate conflict, I will happily wade into it for the purpose of achieving a peaceful outcome for myself or someone else.
 
While my parents chose a name they felt was good for their daughter, God was intentional with the name of Jesus and chose a name that was good for all humanity. He called Jesus the "Prince of Peace." When I think of what peace means, I lean towards quiet, no conflict, everyone is happy, unity, no stress, etc. But God's definition of peace will rock your mind. Remember, God didn't just pick a word to make us feel good. He is intentional.
 
In the Old Testament of the Bible, the Hebrew word for peace is "shalom." Depending on how it's used, the word "shalom" means: repairing or making a right relationship between people, wholeness of life or good health, completeness or fulfillment, and victory over an enemy.
 
Now look at those interpretations and think about how God calls Jesus the Prince of Peace. How amazing that in this one word, Jesus, the promised Prince of Peace - or Prince of Shalom - fulfills each interpretation! GOOSE BUMPS. 
 
Jesus brings us into a righteous and right relationship with God our Father. 
“For this is how God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life. God sent his Son into the world not to judge the world, but to save the world through him." -John 3:16-17
 
"Christ suffered for our sins once for all time. He never sinned, but he died for sinners to bring you safely home to God. He suffered physical death, but he was raised to life in the Spirit." -1 Peter 3:18
 
We are made whole through Jesus.
"So you also are complete through your union with Christ, who is the head over every ruler and authority." - Colossians 2:10
 
Jesus' sacrifice and death on the Cross was complete and fulfilled prophecy.
"But our High Priest offered himself to God as a single sacrifice for sins, good for all time. Then he sat down in the place of honor at God’s right hand. For by that one offering he forever made perfect those who are being made holy." - Hebrews 10:12, 14
 
Jesus has claimed victory over our enemy Satan and the grave. 
"Because God’s children are human beings—made of flesh and blood—the Son also became flesh and blood. For only as a human being could he die, and only by dying could he break the power of the devil, who had the power of death. Only in this way could he set free all who have lived their lives as slaves to the fear of dying." -Hebrews 2:14-15
 
I'll say it again: GOOSE BUMPS. 
 
When Jesus says, “I am leaving you with a gift—peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give. So don’t be troubled or afraid," this is what He means. His peace isn't the absence of conflict, but the fulfillment of God's love, grace, and kindness toward us. Jesus is our Prince of Shalom, and we truly can have peace of mind and heart because Jesus, God's gift to us, is truly our peace.