An Alphabetical Analysis
Volume 7 - Doctrinal Truth - Page 94 of 297
Peace.  This word translates the Hebrew shalom and the Greek eirene.  The
primary meaning of shalom is not quietness, ease, or the like, but
completeness, and from this meaning comes the idea of 'making good' any
deficiency, 'making up a difference' between two parties, and so ultimately
arriving at a conception of peace that is based squarely upon settlement,
satisfaction and completeness, a very different idea from peace as a
cessation of hostilities, with the grounds of friction or strife unremoved,
because unsettled.  We will trace this movement of the word shalom and trust
the reader will follow it to its blessed conclusion with thankfulness for all
that it teaches concerning our relationship to God by virtue of the finished
Work of His Son.
Shalom means 'to complete, perfect or finish'.
'So he finished the house' (1 Kings 9:25).
'So the house of the Lord was perfected' (2 Chron. 8:16).
'The iniquity of the Amorites is not yet full' (Gen. 15:16).
Shalom means 'to make good' as a loss.
'The owner of the pit shall make it good' (Exod. 21:34).
'He shall surely pay ox for ox' (Exod. 21:36).
'He shall restore double'.  'He shall make restitution' (Exod. 22:4,5).
'He shall make amends' (Lev. 5:16).
Shalom means 'to make up a difference'.
'Acquaint now thyself with Him, and  be at peace' (Job 22:21).
Peace is the consequence, not of compromise, but of settlement.
causes of difference being completely removed and rightly settled.
'The work of righteousness shall be peace' (Isa. 32:17).
'Righteousness and peace have kissed each other' (Psa. 85:10).
'The chastisement of our peace was upon Him' (Isa. 53:5).
The Greek eirene includes all that shalom intends, and in the New Testament
its righteous basis is clearly indicated.  Eirene is derived from eirein eis
en 'connecting into one', and so includes the thought embedded in the Hebrew
shalom.  Paul, who was a Hebrew, speaks of the 'bond of peace' in Ephesians
4, and the 'bond of perfectness' in Colossians 3, and to him there would not
be the same difference as appears to the English mind.  Peace and perfection
are allied.
'Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our
Lord Jesus Christ' (Rom. 5:1).
'And, having made peace through the blood of His cross, by Him to
reconcile all things unto Himself' (Col. 1:20).
It is in harmony with these statements that we find the Saviour
supplementing His salutation by exhibiting the grounds of it:
'Jesus ... saith unto them, Peace be unto you.  And when He had so
Said, He Shewed unto them His hands and His side' (John 20:19,20).