Summary: Violence, tension, unrest and scores of trials can certainly dim the angels proclamation of "Peace on Earth, Goodwill toward men." Jesus comes to us as the Ruler and Prince of Peace. His names in Isa 9:6 demonstrate His deity, power, and authority to br
Jesus: “The 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
We are living at a time when the world longs for peace but there is NEVER a day when the news does not include exactly the opposite. Many are focused on the war against terrorism, on the constant conflict in the Middle East, our own economy and job crisis and recently, violence at home.
Last Sunday night, our president spoke to the country and to the grieving community at Newtown, CN, and I was pleased to hear him quote God’s Word several times and to mention God, but tragedy can dim the tidings of the angels to the shepherds in Luke 2:14 (KJV), “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.” It seems almost impossible.to hear that message of peace, unless you can hear JESUS.
Jesus IS Peace.
Jesus told us that: "I have told you these things, so that In ME you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world’. (John 16:33) That’s why peace seems so elusive in the world in which we live. The world looks to conquer others in order to bring peace. Rulers are trying to gain boundaries, gather land, change economies or change people’s religions with the idea that, in doing so, they may acquire peace, when it is Jesus who IS Peace. When the world rejects Jesus, they reject PEACE.
The word "peace" in the Hebrew is that familiar word, "shalom". It is most often translated peace, but the idea is not just the absence of conflict, but also means “completeness or wellness”. It speaks about human friendship (we greet one another with “Shalom”) but most of the 25 times that Isaiah uses the word “peace”, it is about covenantal relationship and friendship with God. Listen to a few verses:
“LORD, You will establish peace for us, Since You have also performed for us all our works.” Isa. 26:13
“And the work of righteousness will be peace, And the service of righteousness, quietness and confidence forever . 18 Then my people will live in a peaceful habitation, And in secure dwellings and in undisturbed resting places.” Isa 32:17-18 (Who works righteousness? Jesus. Our works result in death, not eternal quietness and confidence.
THIS verse appears twice in Isaiah: “"There is no peace for the wicked," says the LORD.” The wicked don’t have peace because they reject Jesus.
Jesus Offers Peace
Jesus said something similar in Luke 12:51: “Do you suppose that I came to grant peace on earth? I tell you, no, but rather division.” How does the Prince of Peace bring division? JESUS comes and offers a PEACE TREATY on God’s behalf to a sinful and fallen world that has been fighting against Holy, Loving and entirely JUST God but most reject His Treaty.
In Isaiah 9:6, Jesus’ “names” almost tell the complete story: Jesus comes as Wonderful, displaying all of God’s might works. He comes as Counselor, as the highest Divine legal representative of God. He offers counsel that is life-giving and life-changing. He demonstrates all of His claims as “Mighty God” but also demonstrates a perfect and selfless love, a Fatherly Love, by giving Himself as a peace offering.
Jesus OFFERS Peace, and His “Peace offering” is acceptable to God the Father, but rejected by most of the enemy. Ironically, those who WANT to accept Jesus’ peace offering now BECOME the enemy along with the Prince of Peace and the result is world spiritual warfare!
Romans 8:6 says: “For the mind set on the flesh (on the worldly) is death, but the mind set on the Spirit is life and peace.” There is this battle going on: some are going to fight to the death to get their own way, and some are going to accept Jesus’ Peace Offering and receive life and peace.
Jesus’ Peace is FAR MORE encompassing than the world’s because it offers peace with God! Romans 5:1-4 says: “Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have PEACE with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom also we have obtained our introduction by faith into this grace in which we stand.”
We are DECLARED RIGHTEOUS by trusting (that’s what faith is), by trusting, in Jesus’ sacrifice, by accepting His peace offering, which God initiated and verified, and we are no longer at war with God.
We could state it another way, the person who knows PEACE WITH GOD is the one who HAS BEEN JUSTIFIED BY FAITH. That person has a new standing: He surrenders to God and becomes an enemy of sin because he is now at peace with God, standing humbly but confidently in the peaceful room of God’s Grace.