Summary: Part of a Christmas Series looking at the titles of the Messiah in Isaiah 9:6 as promises of God, this one focuses on the title Everlasting Father.
How many people have finished their shopping?
Did you hear about the guy who went out and bought his wife a beautiful diamond ring for Christmas? His friend said, “I thought she wanted a new SUV?”
“She did,” he replied. "But where am I gonna find a fake Jeep?”
It’s funny isn’t it that so many people make this time of year about buying and receiving gifts but they forget that the reason we are supposed to do that is to remember the gift that was given 2000 years ago. The reason we honor that gift and the birth of that child is because of the mission that He was sent to accomplish. We’ve said that Isaiah 9:2-7 could be a birth announcement for Christ, because even though it was written hundreds of years before His birth it describes the life and mission of Christ so well. Let’s just read our key verse for today one more time, Isaiah 9:6, “For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.”
The beauty of this passage becomes greater when we realize the background. It was one of utter darkness. The people were trapped in a land of injustice. The government was corrupt, the judges were corrupt, even the priests were corrupt. Worse their enemies were growing stronger all around them, while their nation was growing weaker. It was a time of worry and injustice. The people had turned from God and were discovering that they had then turned to hopelessness.
That is always the case apart from God there is no lasting hope. We may find success and happiness in life for a while, but everything in this world fades and ultimately we will face the final test, when this life is over and the next begins. Will we be stepping into the presence of our God, or will we be stepping into an unknown and fearful place.
The difference for us, the blessing of being a Christian is found in these titles. When we face difficulties and we don’t know where to turn, we discover that Jesus is our “Wonderful Counselor.” The meaning of those words reveals the depth of their promise. Wonderful in the Old Testament is a word reserved for things that only God can do. Counselor is not just someone who gives advise or listens well. It was someone who was well versed in diplomacy and economics it was a person who was trained to know the answer. Our God is the one the we can turn to and He will reveal answers to us that no one else can, in ways that no one else can. Then the promise is that he will be our mighty God, in other words our Hero, the one who will go to battle for us. He is the one who gave Himself the mission of saving us. That mission was completed when He not just when He was Crucified, but when He stepped out of the grave three days later have taken the keys of death and Hell. But it’s not just in the next life that God promises to be our hero, because He also promises to save us from injustice. It’s not that He promises that there will be no injustice in the world, but that He would not let injustice destroy us.
Today we are looking at the next title slash promise that God gives us. It is that we would call Jesus the Everlasting Father. Father is a term that mean a lot of things to a lot of people, and usually it is connected to the relationship that we have with our Father. But think about this context for a minute. Isaiah is writing to the nation of Israel. When a nation calls someone Father it is always a term of honor. Here in America we call George Washington the Father of our Country. It is meant to honor him and the courage and sacrifice that he display which enabled our country to even exist. We call the men who signed the Declaration of Independence and wrote our Constitution among other things, the Founding Fathers, again honoring what they did for this nation to exist.
But before any of that happened there was a prophecy that a nation, and ultimately everyone, would call someone Father, and not just for a time, not just look back at what he did and say that he contributed something and had and impact centuries ago, but He would be the Everlasting Father, that He would not only accomplish something during one period of time, but for all time. The promise is that for all generations God would be a part of our lives this is the gift that we celebrate every Christmas and hopefully throughout the year.