Basic Christianity: Shalom

The Hebrew word shalom we’ve come to associate with the English word “peace,” but it has a much bigger meaning. It really means complete, not lacking.

The most famous psalm starts with, “The Lord is my Shepherd; I shall not want.” We have need of nothing because we have Jesus. We could reword that first line of the twenty-third psalm like this: The Lord is my Shepherd; I have shalom.

In Jesus we are complete.

Colossians 2:10a (BSB) And you have been made complete in Christ.

That word complete is full, accomplished, finished. Jesus’ work is finished.

John 19:30 When Jesus had received the sour wine, he said, “It is finished,” and he bowed his head and gave up his spirit.

Hebrews 10:14 For by a single offering he has perfected for all time those who are being sanctified.

That last verse says that we’ve been perfected. It is finished, even though the ongoing work of sanctification is happening. There is no work left because it has all been accomplished. We can rest; we can be at peace.

Ephesians 1:3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places.

2 Peter 1:3 (BSB) His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through the knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and excellence.

Romans 8:32 (BSB) He who did not spare His own Son but gave Him up for us all, how will He not also, along with Him, freely give us all things?

We’ve been given everything in Christ Jesus. We have every spiritual blessing, everything we need for life, everything we need for godliness, and just all things!

God is our provider, our helper, and does all things well. He is perfect in all of His ways and cares for us. We lack nothing. We have shalom.

We have the fullness of rest, the fullness of joy, the fullness of peace, the fullness of hope, the fullness of love, the fullness of provision, the fullness of satisfaction, the fullness of God!

Ephesians 3:19 …to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.

There’s nothing more we could need. We should not be searching for comfort, rest, peace, joy, satisfaction, love. We have it all in Jesus. Don’t replace Jesus with some substandard form of these things. Replace with Jesus anything in your life you turn to for versions of these things that we can have in Christ. If you turn to TV to relax and rest at the end of the day, turn it off and turn to Jesus in His Word instead. If you turn to scrolling for a laugh, turn to Jesus instead and sing for joy. If you turn to food for comfort, turn to Jesus in prayer instead. Those are just a few examples.

We have it all. We can dwell in the place of shalom. There is no more striving. There is no working to please God by trying to be good or better. We please God by faith, by trusting in Jesus that He has perfected us and is perfecting us, making us accepted and highly favored in the Beloved.

Ephesians 1:6 (NKJV) to the praise of the glory of His grace, by which He made us accepted in the Beloved.

That Greek word translated “accepted” is only used one other place in the Bible. It’s where Mary is called “highly favored” in Luke 1:28. That’s you in Christ Jesus!

If you were highly favored by the God of the universe, what could be lacking from your life? You have shalom.

Lesson Point: It is finished. There is no more work to be done. We can rest and be at peace in Christ Jesus.

Challenge Question: Is there any area of your life where you feel lack? Take it to prayer. Jesus can meet any need or show us there is no need after all.