Tuesday, April 12, 2011

The Altar of Peace

It was dark days in Israel’s history when God had delivered them into the hands of their enemies because of all the evil that the children of Israel did in the sight of the Lord.

God used the Midianites to defeat Israel, to rob them of the new crops, take their stock, and cause them to hide in dens and caves. In Judges 6 we read of the Israelites crying unto the Lord in their distress and God was compassionate and merciful once again, saving them by raising up Gideon. God sent an unnamed prophet to remind Israel that He had brought them out of the bondage in Egypt and drove out their enemies and gave them their land.

God had not abandoned them and was still their God, but they had not obeyed His voice.

Gideon was hiding from Israel’s enemies in an abandoned winepress where he was threshing out a little bit of grain by hand so his enemies would not find him and steal it. God’s angel met him there and called him to be a deliverer for Israel against their enemies. As a sign to Gideon God sent a fire that came out of a rock to consume the sacrifice that Gideon had prepared for the Lord.

When Gideon saw the face of the angel, the Lord spoke a great peace unto him and told him that his life would be spared. Verse 24 says, “Then Gideon built an altar there unto the Lord, and called it Jehovah Shalom: The Lord our peace.”

These are dark days in our world today. So much of what is unfolding before us is the result of spiritual darkness and rebellion against the Lord God. Antichrist spirits are preparing the way for the coming Antichrist and beast system as found in Revelation 13 and 17.

In the midst of all the shaking and chaos, God still has a people who are called for His namesake. We are the people to whom God is saying, “I will be with you. I have redeemed you, I have called you by your name, and you are mind!” Just as Gideon found his altar of peace in severe oppression from enemy nations, we also can allow the peace of God to rule in our hearts. Christ is our altar of peace. He is the peace of God who tells us to “let not our hearts be troubled.” He is a consuming fire and will one day judge all the nations and defeat Satan and his subjects permanently!

- by Pastor Virgil Amundson