Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee. Isaiah 26:3 KJV
During the summer before college, I worked at a Florida Phosphate plant as a laborer. I worked continual swing shifts at the 24 hour plant. It was a dry and dusty place of work. As a laborer I spent most of my time shoveling the overflow of phosphate away from the conveyor belts. During my breaks, I would memorize scriptures from a little booklet I brought with me. By little, I mean this booklet was 2 x 2 ½ inches tall filled with meaningful bible verses. Some of the verses, like today’s, are locked in memory from that summer.
The Hebrew word order follows this pattern: leaning on a strong purpose, You guard with peace peace, because he trust You
The leaning on a strong purpose suggest a secure mind or a steadfast mind as used in other translations. What makes the mind steadfast? Directing your thoughts on a God who never changes. To truly be leaning upon something for support, means that you are no longer supporting yourself. Your full weight is resting upon the thing which you are leaning upon. God is worthy of the conviction to place all of your trust in Him.
To keep is the Hebrew word to guard or watch over. Those who are leaning and trusting on God, He guards. The one who never sleeps nor slumbers is always watching over you. He never gets tired or weary. He never needs a sabbatical. He does not find more important things to do. He stands ready.
Perfect peace is written by using the same noun twice – peace, peace or in Hebrew, shalom, shalom. The literary style of using two of the same nouns is stronger than using an adjective to show the full impact of the meaning. Perfect, in this sense, means 100 percent completeness with no lack. The focus is not on perfect – peace, but rather possessing all of the benefits of peace or the shalom of God. Peace is God’s gift of welfare, happiness, favor, good health, and wholeness of life.
Trust in You. This shalom, shalom is for those who place all of their trust in God who is watching over them. I find this works best when I verbalize my trust. Literally, I say, “God, I don’t know how this is going to work out, but I am trusting you to lead and guide me.” This is not my prayer time, rather I speak this aloud as I am facing an issue or worry or concern. Faith comes by hearing.
ADDED – The above entry was first posted on April 30, 2020. I am adding this additional info.
The Old Testament or Old Covenant can be summed up in an “If, Then conditions” relationship with God. “ If you obey, then I will bless you. If you keep my commandments, I will be your God.” Israel was incapable of keeping their end of the bargain, in the same way that we fall short. Our verse today has that same element of getting the benefits of shalom only if you can keep trusting or leaning on God. We will all fall short at some level.
Enter the New Testament or New Covenant of God’s grace extended to the followers of Jesus. Jesus was the only human who fulfilled the “If, Then” conditions which God required for the blessings. Jesus lived in constant communion with the Father and received the blessings of Shalom, Shalom all of His life.
This is the best part, with Jesus in you, He shares His earned benefits of shalom, shalom blessings with each of God’s children.
- You can’t earn it, be good enough, try to be religious, or do a type of penance for it. You humbly receive shalom, shalom as a gift from Jesus.
- His peace he experienced in the storm is your gift.
- His peace during the temptations with Satan is your gift.
- His peace maintained when one of His friends betrayed Him is your gift.
- His peace when all of the followers were leaving because of His direct teaching of truth is your gift.
- His peace to trust God for paying taxes is your gift.
- His peace when some rejected Him for speaking truth is your gift.
- His peace maintained during Martha’s to do list and Mary’s attentiveness is your gift.
- Receive your gift of peace, peace which Jesus gives to you.
Oh, the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ is overwhelming. Peace, Peace is yours today simply because you chose to become a follower of Jesus. Thank the Lord that the conditions for blessings have been fulfilled in Jesus. May you walk in your inheritance as you enjoy the benefits of PEACE, PEACE.
Blessings Love y’all