The meaning of Shiloh
Oct 30, 2019
Shiloh has come, at least on a prophetic level, and will emerge into the earth in the time ahead. But what is the meaning of Shiloh?
The literal Hebrew meaning of the term is “tranquility, rest.” It comes from the root word shala, which means “to be at rest, be quiet, to prosper, be at ease.”
The term, then, foretells the day when we come into a position of REST. The usual word that expresses this idea of entering rest is nuwach (Noah) or menuach (Manoah). Shiloh is said to mean “peaceable one, or peace-maker” and points to the coming of the Prince of Peace (Isaiah 9:6).
Christ came the first time primarily as the Lion of Judah who was to be killed, as Jacob prophesied in Genesis 49:9, 11). The other major metaphor was the Lamb of God, a reference to the Passover lamb that was killed to transform people from donkeys to lambs (Exodus 13:13). But Jacob’s prophecy of Shiloh, used as a personal designation for the Messiah, presents Him as the Prince of Peace, the great Reconciler of Nations. This is the time when the nations will “hammer their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning hooks” (Isaiah 2:4).
The Messianic Age to come, which the Jews called the Great Sabbath (millennium), was to be an era of peace, rest, and prosperity. Just as the Sabbath day was a day of rest from labor, so also the seventh millennium was a long “day” of rest from the labor imposed upon the earth since God sentenced the earth to hard labor on account of Adam’s sin. The basic law is found in Exodus 21:2,
2 If you buy a Hebrew slave, he shall serve for six years; but on the seventh he shall go out as a free man without payment.
The Town of Shiloh
While Israel was in the wilderness under Moses, the Ark of the Covenant was said to be seeking a resting place for the people. We read in Numbers 10:33,
33 Thus they set out from the Mount of the Lord three days’ journey with the ark of the covenant of the Lord journeying in front of them for the three days, to seek out a resting place for them.
When the Israelites went into the Promised Land, the tabernacle was set up at a town called Shiloh (Joshua 18:1). Shiloh served as the spiritual center of the nation at that time, and it was their first place of rest in the Promised Land. However, it was not the final resting place, because later the priesthood corrupted itself, and God left Shiloh.
About 80 years later, the Ark found a resting place in Jerusalem. Ieru-Salem (“City of Peace”) was the second place of rest, but it too became corrupt, and once again God left that place (Jeremiah 7:12, 13, 14).
The permanent resting place is the temple that is built upon the foundation of Christ, which Paul presents to us in Ephesians 2:20, 21, 22. There is no greater temple than this, although much of the church has been deceived into thinking that there will be a third temple in Jerusalem where Christ will inhabit and from which place He will rule the Kingdom in the age to come. Such Christians seem to forget that God forsook that place “as Shiloh,” when the glory departed (“Ichabod”), never again to return.
The Coming of Shiloh
In our time, Shiloh is a code name for the Messiah, who is also the Ark of the Covenant that seeks a resting place for the people. This resting place is no longer a particular location in heaven or on earth. It is a spiritual position of rest, the fulfillment of the Sabbath law, which Isaiah 58:13 defines as not doing our own works or speaking our own words.
In other words, we are AMEN people, because we speak only what we hear our Father say and do only what we see our Father do. This is the ultimate “rest” of Shiloh. It establishes an inner peace and rest, so that we may be spokesmen for the Prince of Peace. In that position, no weapon of war will prosper against us (Isaiah 54:17). Instead, we ourselves will prosper.
This rest, peace, and prosperity has been promised to us for a very long time, and many individuals over the centuries have entered into this rest while they lived. However, God is building up a body of people who can function as the body of Christ. It has taken a long time and many generations to form this body of people—a few out of every generation. We are now entering the time when that body of overcomers is nearing completion and is ready to experience the blessings of the feast of Tabernacles.
More will come later at the time of the general resurrection at the start of the eighth millennium. But for now, the focus is upon the first of the first fruits (“barley”), those who “ripen” first, who are presented to God on the eighth day of Tabernacles in the day that this feast is fulfilled historically.