Ray McDonald's Blog

Thoughts and Reflections

Peace on Earth

Luke 2:14

“Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.”

Pic of Ray 11302014Peace on earth! How about peace in the TV room? That was what my mom was after as we three kids were growing up. With one TV in the house – the three of us (my sister – brother – and I) would debate (loudly at times) what to watch. Was it going to be something my older sister wanted to watch (usually something my brother and I didn’t want to watch) – something I wanted to watch (the middle child – usually sports or westerns) – or something our younger brother wanted to watch (usually Batman or something else that was OK but not what we wanted to watch – LOL)? Mom would usually threaten us with turning the TV off if we couldn’t decide. That usually won the moment as our sister would go off to read and that left my brother and I to decide and we usually compromised (our sister knew she would lose in a vote off as my brother and I would team up!).

Peace on earth! This is the usual pageant response by those wishing to touch the awe button in all of us as they respond to questions. Peace on earth – a novel idea for those who dream – because with radical Muslims around the world like ISIS – racism running rampant (between all races) – and unrest all over the world – peace on earth is a pipe dream it seems. There always seems to be something going on to cause unrest.

Yet peace on earth is what the angels declared to the shepherds. Here is today’s passage in partial context. Luke 2:1-20 – 1 In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. 2 (This was the first census that took place while Quirinius was governor of Syria.) And everyone went to their own town to register. 4 So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. 5 He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, 7 and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them. 8 And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. 9 An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. 10 But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. 11 Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. 12 This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.” 13 Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying, 14 “Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.” 15 When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.” 16 So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger. 17 When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child, 18 and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them. 19 But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart. 20 The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen, which were just as they had been told.

The proclamation was that Jesus came to bring peace on the earth to those who had His blessing fall upon them. His blessing will fall upon all who give their hearts and souls to Him. David wrote – Psalm 23:4 – Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me. That is peace – to face the end of this natural life and fear no evil – because of Jesus!

Do you have this peace? Is Christmas for you the birth of the prince of peace – the One who came to give us peace on earth?

Merry Christmas to you and yours!

Just something to think about today as you go on your way.

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December 19, 2014 - Posted by | Advent Thought, Christmas, Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Personal, Theology | , , , , , ,

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