Weekend, December 2, 2023
Peace on Earth?
“Glory to God in highest heaven, and peace on earth to those with whom God is pleased.” (Luke 2:14 NLT)
“Glory to God in highest heaven, and peace on earth to those with whom God is pleased.” That is what the angels said one night to shepherds as they kept watch over their flocks in an area known as Bethlehem.
But when we look at our world, we wonder, “Where is the peace that the angels promised?” Things seem more contentious than ever before.
Let’s understand, however, the original meaning of that statement. A more literal translation of the angels’ words would read, “Peace on earth among men who are pleasing God.”
Wicked people breaking God’s commandments have created most of the wars and problems that we’re facing today. Yet God will bring peace to the person who is pleasing to Him.
A day is coming when Jesus will establish His kingdom on Earth. A day is coming when Christ will return as King of kings and Lord of lords. But He won’t be born in a humble stable in Bethlehem. When He returns, every eye will see Him. He won’t wear a crown of thorns, and people won’t crucify Him on a cross. When Christ returns, He will wear many crowns.
What a lot of people missed the first time was that Jesus came with the express purpose of dying on the cross. He spoke of it often. He told His disciples that He would be betrayed and crucified but that He would rise from the dead on the third day. He told them about this again and again, yet they seemed to somehow miss this message.
But it was for this very purpose that He came to lay down His life. He was not born to live a good life and provide an excuse for us to spend a lot of money in December. Jesus was born to die so that we might live. He came to pay the price for the sin of every person who has ever lived. He has a name that is above every name.
Writing about Jesus to the believers in Philippi, the apostle Paul said, “Therefore, God elevated him to the place of highest honor and gave him the name above all other names, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue declare that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father” (Philippians 2:9-11 NLT).
Every person eventually will confess that Jesus Christ is the Lord. Some will say it reluctantly. And sadly, for many of these people, it will be too late. But if you will say it now, you can have the hope of life during your life on Earth—and life after death.
Do you know Jesus in a real and personal way? Nothing this world has to offer will fill the void inside us because we were created to know God. Only Jesus can give you a life that is worth living and the absolute assurance that when you die, you will go to Heaven.
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