The Promise of Peace
Today’s Text: Luke 2:13-14
WALKING THROUGH THE DAYS OF CHRISTMAS
Peace may seem like an elusive quality in today’s contentious and hate-filled world. Yet, global peace was promised when the angel announced our Lord’s birth:
And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying: “Glory to God in the highest, And on earth peace, goodwill toward men!”
The baby heralded by angels was the long-promised Messiah of Israel! He was born of a virgin at the right time and in the right place to fulfill the prophecies of the Hebrew Scriptures (Isa. 7:14; Dan. 9:24-27; Mic. 4:8; 5:2).
It is He who will return to earth to personally inaugurate the long-awaited Messianic Kingdom.
The Messianic Kingdom will be a literal worldwide monarchy generating unprecedented peace and prosperity on the planet.
- All conflict will be resolved and the world will enjoy unparalleled peace under the rule of Messiah (Mic. 4:3).
- The implements of war and conflict will be destroyed (Isa. 2:4).
- Jewish people will be brought from every area of the globe to live in their ancient homeland (Isa. 11:11).
- Israel’s enemies will be decisively destroyed (Zech. 12:9).
- Gentile people groups will seek the Lord (Isa. 11:10).
The prophet Isaiah’s characterization of the Messianic Kingdom is frankly shocking:
“The wolf shall dwell with the lamb, the leopard shall lie down with the young goat, the calf and the young lion and the fatling together . . . They shall not hurt nor destroy in all My holy mountain, for the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the Lord as the waters cover the sea” (Isa. 11:6-7).
The Hebrew Scriptures teach that the certainty of this still-future kingdom is inseparably linked to the Nativity (Isa. 7:14; 9:6). The babe that was laid in the manger perfectly fulfilled the Old Testament prophecies concerning Messiah’s birth, but there was more!
God’s Messianic program has not changed. The Messianic Kingdom promised to the descendants of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob is a literal future reality!
For the past two millennia, however, the whole world (every individual) has had the opportunity to experience peace that comes from a personal relationship with Israel’s Messiah.
The apostle John writes,
“But as many as received Him [Jesus, the Christ (Messiah)], to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name” (Jn. 1:12).
Near the end of His earthly ministry, Jesus confidently encouraged His disciples:
“Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid” (Jn. 14:27).
A little later, Jesus continued,
“These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace (Jn. 16:33).
Many things in our world can rob us of peace: corruption, unstable economic conditions, political unrest, clear and present enemy threats, declining morality, daily challenges and even the mundane realities of life.
We as people of faith, however, can choose to focus our attention on the Prince of Peace during the Christmas season (Isa. 9:6).
Although the world is not currently experiencing the global peace that will characterize the Messianic Kingdom, those who enjoy a personal relationship with Messiah can be assured that, “the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ [Messiah] Jesus” (Phil. 4:7).
Allow God’s peace to be a reality in your life; and then, determine to make peace evident as you interact with people in your sphere of influence this Christmas season.
Charles E. McCracken is an international Bible teacher, long-time friend of Israel and advocate for the Jewish people. With 40 plus years of ministry experience, Rev. McCracken is known for authenticity in communicating biblical truth that makes his presentations relevant for those seeking to understand the significance of Israel and the church in Bible prophecy. He staunchly supports the nation of Israel and the Jewish people’s right to exist and live in peace.
© Charles E. McCracken 2016, devotional comments only. Repost/Reprint with permission from the author via Contact Form under ABOUT. Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved. (Emphasis added.)
1) Walking to church (c. 1853). By George Henry Durrie (1820–1863) [PD-US, PD-Art], via Wikimedia Commons – Enhancement: MKM Portfolios
2) Glory to God in the Highest. Detail of the portico of the Providence Congregational Chapel, Cleckheaton, Kirklees, West Yorkshire, England. By Tim Green [CC BY 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons – Enhancement: MKM Portfolios
Categories: Walking Through the Days of Christmas