Summary: The coming of Christ brings me peace for my life.
The Coming of Christ Brings Peace
VIDEO: John Denver and the Muppets - “The Peace Carol”
People are looking for peace. Today, people are looking for peace in conflicts between countries. People want peace in their families, and peace in their homes. But it is very hard to find someone who can help bring peace.
Just as in our day, people in the time of Jesus’s birth were looking for peace. When Jesus started His ministry, everyone was looking for the man who would bring peace. In their case, it was peace from the oppression that came from Rome.
Today, it could be peace from financial pressure. The recession has hit everyone. And these hard times make things very difficult for families. It is Christmas, and we need to buy gifts, but we don’t have the money. We have bills, but we can’t pay. We aren’t fighting the “War on Terror” here in the Ozarks. We are fighting the “War on Creditors”. Credit is tight, and we can’t use debt to pay all of our bills anymore. So, since we have to struggle to make ends meet, we end up meeting in a war zone at home.
Families struggle and parents fight with one another. Words are said that would never normally be said because we are in a tight struggle.
During the time of this story, the people of Israel were looking for a “man with a plan” for peace. They asked these three questions to John the Baptist:
Are you the Christ?
Are you the Prophet?
Are you Elijah?
They were asking John the Baptist if he was the “man with a plan” for peace. The people were looking for someone to bring peace.
These titles are repeated twice in this section: Christ, Prophet, and Elijah. So what connection did these titles have to do with bringing peace?
The Christ or Messiah would bring about political peace as the “Prince of Peace.”
The Prophet would bring spiritual peace as the “Priest of Peace”.
Elijah would bring social peace to the home as the “Dr. Phil of Peace”.
As a side note, the three religions that come from Abraham also look to each title as a sign of peace:
Christians look to the Christ to come back. Muslims look to Mohammed as “the Prophet.” The Jews look to Elijah’s return to bring about peace.
But in reality, these were not three separate individuals. They represent one person who would bring peace. Jesus Christ came at Christmas to bring inner peace into our lives. He solved the sin problem when He came to die and pay for my sins. As a result, I now have peace with God. But He also came to bring peace to my life.
I can’t bring peace to the world, but Jesus can. He can bring peace to my world. How does He do that?
Submitting to Jesus will give me inner peace in my life.
Some people look to yoga or some other method or activity that brings inner peace. But in reality, listening to Jesus brings inner peace.
"Come to Me, all of you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. All of you, take up My yoke and learn from Me, because I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for yourselves. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light."
(Matthew 11:28-30 HCSB)
Jesus teaches me how to be a peacemaker.
Blessed are the peacemakers, because they will be called sons of God.
(Matthew 5:9 HCSB)
"You're blessed when you can show people how to cooperate instead of compete or fight. That's when you discover who you really are, and your place in God's family.
(Matthew 5:9 MSG)
What is the source of the wars and the fights among you? Don't they come from the cravings that are at war within you?
(James 4:1 HCSB)
Maybe you don’t have a “war on credit”. Maybe you have a war with other people – your spouse, your children or grandchildren, your friends, co-workers, or even people you don’t realize.
When you take James’s verses in context, you find that lots of the wars and fights come from our own pride and greed in our hearts. We want but we don’t have. We can’t have, because we don’t ask God. We ask God, but we don’t ask Him with the right attitude. This kind of attitude bleeds out to our relationships.
Jesus wants me to be the person who shows the way to the Prince of Peace.
He said, "I am a voice of one crying out in the wilderness: Make straight the way of the Lord--just as Isaiah the prophet said."
(John 1:23 HCSB)