Summary: 2nd Sunday of Advent, 2003 -- How we can have peace in a world of turmoil by following Jesus’ teachings.
My Peace I Give You
2nd Sunday of Advent, 2003
Based, in part, on a message by William Richard Ezell
Scripture Ref: Isaiah 9:6; 26:3 Colossian 3:15
Additional References: The Bible Knowledge Commentary
All the Messianic Prophecies of the Bible, Lockyer
1. 2nd Sunday of Advent Candle Lighting
a. Last Sunday we lit the first candle in our Advent Wreath, the candle of hope. We light it again as we remember that Christ will come again to fulfill all of God’s promises to us.
b. The second candle of Advent is the Candle of Peace. Peace is a word that we hear a lot. It is one of the things that we hope for. Christ brought peace when he first came to us and he will bring everlasting peace when he comes again.
c. The prophet Isaiah called Christ "the Prince of Peace." When Jesus came he taught people the importance of being peacemakers. He said that those who make peace will be called the children of God.
d. We light the candle of peace to remind us that Jesus is the Prince of Peace and that through him peace is found (a person lights the candle of peace).
e. Peace is like a light shining in a dark place. As we look at this candle we celebrate the peace we find in Jesus Christ.
a. Lighting the 2nd Advent candle sets the theme for today’s message—peace.
b. It seems every time we turn on the TV, virtually every news story is peace related—the middle-East peace crisis, civil strife and war in Iraq, civil and unrest in countries throughout the world.
c. Another major focus on peace centers on personal peace, such as inner peace and peace of mind. And, over time, we have been offered many solutions from many prominent people such as Oprah, Dr. Phil, Dear Abby, and Dr. Joyce Brothers, and some not-so-prominent people such as family and friends.
d. What is this elusive “thing” called peace that we so desperately seek and, apparently, seldom seem to be able to find?
e. Webster’s defines peace like this: a state of tranquility or quiet; freedom from disquieting or oppressive thoughts or emotions; harmony in personal relations; and a state or period of mutual concord between governments.
f. Is it possible to have, simultaneously, all these variants of peace? The answer is a rounding, “YES!!!” However, it begins with us as individuals. As long as there is one individual within a body, an organization, a nation, or the world who does not have peace, there cannot be peace at large.
g. So, I first ask you this question, “How do we obtain and maintain peace?” And now, I’ll give you the answer.
3. The Prince of Peace
a. There is not one individual alive today who has not embraced the concept of world peace, or peace in some fashion.
(1) We live in comfortable homes, eat better than anywhere in the world, dress well, and eat well; yet, domestic violence continues to run rampant.
(2) We have some of the most sophisticated and technologically advanced cities in the world, yet our streets are unsafe.
(3) We are pushing the envelope in communication technology, yet we fail to understand ourselves and each other.
b. Isaiah prophesied four names that Jesus would be called, but saved what I believe to be the most important for last—Prince of Peace.
c. Read 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.
(1) All Old Testament glimpses of the coming Messiah are centered around the idea that peace, not war, is characteristic of His ideal kingdom.
(2) This is probably why peace was the central theme of so many Messianic prophecies.
d. Micah prophesied that Christ would be our peace.
(1) Read Micah 5:4-5—He will stand and shepherd his flock in the strength of the LORD, in the majesty of the name of the LORD his God. And they will live securely, for then his greatness will reach to the ends of the earth. And he will be their peace.
(2) Christ’s caring, guiding, and protecting role is accomplished by God’s strength and for His sake.
(3) As he shepherds us, we will have peace and security because His greatness will “reach to the ends of the earth.”
e. He shares this peace with us. Read John 14:27—Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.
4. The Two-Fold Peace