Shalom! The Hebrew greeting which means peace, also describes the state or condition in which the soul of man is reconciled to God. Since man was removed from Eden, it can be said that his greatest need is peace – not peace that is merely a state of mind, but a rich Biblical and relational shalom.
The great enemy of shalom is sin. The Bible teaches that sin corrupts everything that man does – his thoughts, his actions, his relationships, both with God and with others. Our sin creates a true moral guilt before a righteous God; it disrupts family and friendships, creeps into our government and laws, it even spoils the created order itself. God takes his relationship with the creation, with the utmost moral seriousness. He cannot look upon sin – it requires a decisive divine response – the Gospel.
The Gospel then, is God's grand arrangement to restore a lasting shalom to the created order and universe. He foreshadows this plan through a nation, Israel, with their temple and sacrifices, whose blood temporarily atoned for sin. He prophecies this plan though the prophets – Moses in Genesis 3:15, and Isaiah, who wrote (53:5): He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; the chastisement for our peace (shalom) was upon Him …
Shalom is accomplished ultimately and finally, through the life, death, burial, and resurrection of the Son of God, who while we were yet in our unreconciled, peaceless condition, died for us, because God loved us so greatly (Rom 5:8). On the basis of this finished work, God's people are forgiven, cleansed, justified, redeemed, restored, in union with Christ, and is able to stand in the peace that comes only from the Gospel.