Summary: Jesus as our Everlasting Father & Prince of Peace...
The Rest of the Package
December 30th, 2007
Beartown Road Alliance Church
We began our Christmas series three weeks ago as December was just beginning and Christmas still seemed like it was a good ways off in to the distance. Now, December has come and gone, Christmas has come and gone, and after this morning, this series will have come and gone as well. With the weather and the juggling that we had to do with our Christmas programs, this series has been anything but smooth. This morning, we’re left with a lot to cover as we try to tie up our loose ends. If you remember a few weeks back, we began to look at a verse in the book of Isaiah. Isaiah was one of the primary prophets that God used to spread the News of the coming Messiah. And in Isaiah 9:6, you have a prophecy concerning the child that was to come written about 700 years before His birth. We looked at the way that Isaiah’s prophecy was special. So many of the clues that God left through the prophets were about specific details of the Messiah, they were about things he would do and the way He would do them. We were told how and where He would be born. We were told how He would suffer and die. We were told how much money He would be betrayed for and the way that He would handle His accusers. There is a lot of fascinating prophecy about the coming Messiah and Jesus Christ fulfilled every last detail of those prophecies. Each and every clue pointed to him.
When we read this prophecy in Isaiah 9, however, it’s different. It tells us who this child will be. It tells us what kind of relationship that He wants to have with us and what benefits that relationship will bring to the people. This is a description of the God’s perfect, loving gift to us and it has been fulfilled in the life, death, and resurrection of Christ. Listen to what God tells us that His Son will be:
ISA 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.
That’s a lot of pressure to put on a child, to expect that He can live up to each of these names and meet the expectations that come with each one. But this is no ordinary child, this is no ordinary gift, this child is God’s own Son. As He grew, He began to show each of these aspects of His character in the way that He dealt with and ministered to people.
As we began this series, we looked at the name Wonderful Counselor. We saw that Christ wants to be our supernatural adviser, not a Dr. Phil type counselor, one who speaks with an air of authority and expertise whether they know what they’re talking about or not! But one who truly knows us, one who is intimately involved in our lives and knows and wants what’s best for us. God’s desire was that, through this gift, we would have One who could take us by the hand and show us the way. This has always been God’s desire.
ISA 48:17 This is what the LORD says--your Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel: "I am the LORD your God, who teaches you what is best for you, who directs you in the way you should go.
This is what Christ promises to do as our Wonderful Counselor. But as we go further, we see that there’s more to this relationship. We talked on Christmas Eve about this second name that Isaiah gives us. The people of Israel wanted a deliverer, they wanted a strong and mighty Savior that would come and rescue them from all those nations that had enslaved them and held them down. Isaiah assures them that this child, though helpless and frail, was the Mighty God. He would be, in every aspect, God and the power and majesty and might that accompanied that reality would be His. This gift would have the power to save us from our sins.
In the time that we have left, I want to look at the last two names that Isaiah gives to this child and what they mean to us today. He says that this child will be our:
I. Everlasting Father
Isaiah uses the Hebrew word Abi-`ad. It’s actually a hyphenated word that consists of the Hebrew word for Father “Abi,” and “ad” which means everlasting, eternal, or “unceasing in duration. Do you remember how old your father always seemed to you when you were growing up? In our family, we would come up with some pretty good jokes that poked fun at our “old man.” Well, our dads have nothing on Christ. Isaiah says that He is the father who has always been. There has never been a time when Jesus did not exist. He is our eternal Father. Because we know that He has always been, we can be assured that He will always be. Isaiah again points out the Divinity of this child.