20 December 2016

What's In a Name? Prince of Peace


For a child will be born to us, a son will be given to us;
And the government will rest on His shoulders;
And His name will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
Eternal Father, Prince of Peace. (Isaiah 9:6)

In these turbulent times, the idea of peace seems almost idyllic. Yet, Isaiah prophesies that the coming Messiah, who is Jesus Christ, would be the Prince of Peace.

In the history of the world since the Fall there has not ever been true peace among sinful men. From Cain and Abel, to whatever conflict is raging in the world today, men have been at war with one another for millennia.

Only One can bring true, lasting peace to the earth—Jesus Christ. Isaiah 9:7 continues,
There will be no end to the increase of His government or peace…”
One day, after Christ has judged the world, He will renew the Heavens and the Earth, and peace will reign for eternity.
I saw no temple in it, for the Lord God the Almighty and the Lamb are its temple. And the city has no need of the sun or of the moon to shine on it, for the glory of God has illumined it, and its lamp is the Lamb. The nations will walk by its light, and the kings of the earth will bring their glory into it. In the daytime (for there will be no night there) its gates will never be closed; and they will bring the glory and the honor of the nations into it; and nothing unclean, and no one who practices abomination and lying, shall ever come into it, but only those whose names are written in the Lamb’s book of life. (Revelation 21:22-27)
As glorious as peace among men may be, however, there is a greater, more ultimate peace that is found only in the Lord Jesus Christ.
In the same region there were some shepherds staying out in the fields and keeping watch over their flock by night. And an angel of the Lord suddenly stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them; and they were terribly frightened. But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid; for behold, I bring you good news of great joy which will be for all the people; for today in the city of David there has been born for you a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. This will be a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.” And suddenly there appeared with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying,
“Glory to God in the highest,
And on earth peace among men with whom He is pleased.”
(Luke 2:8-14)
Note the last phrase in the angels’ announcement: “peace among men with whom He is pleased.”

What does this mean? It means that only those who have been reconciled to God through repentance and faith in Jesus Christ will experience eternal peace and bliss.
Therefore from now on we recognize no one according to the flesh; even though we have known Christ according to the flesh, yet now we know Him in this way no longer. Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come. Now all these things are from God, who reconciled us to Himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation, namely, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and He has committed to us the word of reconciliation. (2 Corinthians 5:16-19)
God is holy and demands holiness (1 Peter 1:13-16). Jesus Christ is the only One through whom man may obtain peace with God. This infant who, upon His birth, was the Prince of Peace, would one day die as the perfect, atoning sacrifice for those who are His. At the moment of His physical death, the barrier between God and man was removed (Matthew 27:51; Mark 15:38; Luke 23:45); the work of the Prince of Peace was accomplished (John 19:30).

May this child, who alone is the Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, and Prince of Peace, reign over our hearts and our lives, and may we seek to serve Him well.

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