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For to us a child is born, to us a son is given; and the government shall be upon his shoulder, and his name shall be called Wonderful Counsellor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
These words were spoken about 700 years before the birth of Jesus. This child was long awaited and the expectations on him were staggering. How could one person bring about world peace?
Israel was desperate for peace. It was a small nation, surrounded by powerful enemies and facing constant threat. In Jesus time they were under Roman rule. It wasn’t just political peace they longed for though, it was peace with God.
Israel, the chosen people, were constantly facing the wrath of the Almighty for their unfaithfulness and disobedience.
Jesus brought peace with God, for Israel and for any who believe in his name. As a later prophecy from Isaiah put it, ‘upon him was the chastisement that brought us peace, and with his wounds we are healed.’ (Isaiah 53:5) The Prince of Peace would give his life in place of ours and because of his death, we have a life that will never end.
Peace may feel like a faraway concept for you this Christmas. Maybe you feel despair at the political landscape, perhaps your family are at loggerheads, or maybe you are just overwhelmed by the demands of life.
This Christmas, spend time with the Christchild and experience the peace he offers.
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