THE PRINCE OF PEACE
I love to call the prophet Isaiah, the Christmas prophet. Isaiah prophetically saw much of Jesus life and ministry 700 years before it happened. His insight into Christ birth, life, and death are amazing.
Let’s begin with Isaiah 9:2 “The people who walked in darkness
Have seen a great light;
Those who dwelt in the land of the shadow of death,
Upon them a light has shined.”
While Isaiah was specifically referring to the land of Naphtali and Zebulon. In a general sense he was looking at each one of us. This passage is really the testimony of every believer in Christ. The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light.
John tells us in chapter one of his gospel that “Jesus is the true light which gives light to every man who comes into the world.” Jesus is the light.
There are religious people who get upset because some of us like Christmas lights. I personally love Christmas lights. Because every light I hang up on Christmas represents the true light of the world. How amazing that somehow Christmas with all its secularism and commercialism inadvertently shines lights. Millions and trillions of light twinkling in the darkness. To me, every light has a message: the light has come!
Isaiah went on to describe the light by giving us some powerful names for “the light” a few verses later. 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.
I cannot think of a verse that uses more descriptive and beautiful words to name the light that came than these four set of double names. Our God is so great a God that the Bible gives him no less than 300 names. There are so many names for the Child Jesus that we remember especially at Christmas. One of my favorites is Emmanuel.
Isaiah 7:14 “Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign: the virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and will call him Immanuel.”
Isaiah knew one or two names would never express the glory of this light that was given to the world.
- He will be called Wonderful
This means He is a miracle worker, and a doer of the extra ordinary. He is One who inspires awe. One of the dangers of being a Christian for a while is that you lose the wonder of it all. You lose the amazement and the mystery.
I love to see the look in a little child’s eye the first time they see a Christmas tree. They are filled with wonder. There is something about a child getting up on Christmas morning with those eyes of innocence and joy and everything is just new to them. There is a wonder to it. As a child on Christmas Eve, I used to lay under the tree between the presents and just enjoy the wonder of the twinkle of the lights.
Now as an adult, it is not the lights that amaze me…It is the Wonder that the Son of God would leave heaven to walk on earth. It is the Wonder that he loves me, with all my failings and all my weakness, He loves me. Don’t lose the wonder of your faith.
You may recall the story of Christopher Wren when he was building Saint Paul’s Cathedral in London and he decided to go inside incognito and ask the workers: What are you making?
He asked one worker…what are you making? He said, I am making money! That is why I am here…purely so I can get a check.
He asked another worker: What are you making? He said, I am making a wall.
He asked another What are you making? I am building a Cathedral to the glory of God. Tell me who had the right perspective. This man had not lost the wonder of it!
At Christmas we celebrate the most wonderful story of all… For God so loved the world that he gave his only son. But have we just lost the wonder of it all? This Christmas eve let the wonder return to your soul.
His name is Wonderful and Wonderful means that Jesus helps us with the Boredom of life.
Do you ever hear from your kids “I’m Bored.” On Christmas mornings in most houses you won’t hear those words with the toys and the presents and the turkey and the tamales. But a week later, all the video games, and the presents get boring. And who wants “turkey” again? The world gets bored.
There are a lot of adults who are bored. They just don’t say it. You can see it in their eyes. They search over the world for a means of excitement. Nothing will fill the inner boredom of their soul until they find Jesus.
Sometimes this generation even comes to church and you can see bit of boredom in them. They forgot something or maybe they never knew Him. Jesus isn’t boring. He is wonderful. He is a miracle worker. He is a friend that sticks closer than a brother. He is a guide.He is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think.
His name is Wonderful to help us with the boredoms of life. Let’s wake up and see all that the Lord has done for us. Life with God is an adventure!
- His name is Counselor
This is one who admonishes us when we need it. This is the person who tells us the truth. The one who encourages us to stick to the path that leads to life.
For all you parents with young Children who will be staying up late tonight putting toys together…let me give you some expert advice…Read the directions.
The truth is we need expert advice in this world. Life is more complicated than ever in 2017. We need to say, Almighty God we want you to come into our lives and into our hearts and we want you to be our Counselor and speak to us and we will listen to you when you speak.
His name is Counselor and that means he helps us with the Decisions of life. There are a lot of choices in life and who is going to say which one is right? We can find the right way by listening to the voice of Jesus who never forsakes us, and by reading the Word.
We have the living Word, and the written Word.
- His name is Mighty God.
He is powerful, omnipotent, and strong.
I am sure the people who heard Isaiah were wondering how could a baby be a mighty God. This was not an ordinary child. This word was given 700 years before he made his appearance here on earth. Christ has always been the Mighty God, the one who flung the stars into space as the hymn says.
I believe it was S.M. Lockridge, a gifted African American preacher said these words:
“When heaven and earth were yet unmade and blackness and formlessness where on the face of the deep, God lived alone. It was there before creation that Christ appeared on the scene, standing on nothing because there was no place for him to stand. He reached out where there was no place to reach, caught something that was not there, hung something on nothing and told it to stay there. He took the hammer of his own will and struck the anvil of his omnipotence and sparks flew.
Then Christ flung them out into space to deck the heavens with the stars. He called light out of darkness. Cosmos out of Chaos. And order out of confusion. Christ dug the deep gorges, piled up the hills and propped up the mountain with his will. The moon and the stars leaped into existence as the word created.
He didn’t have to write his signature on the corner of the sunrise because he is the creator. He didn’t have to place a laundry mark in the lapel of the cosmos because he is the owner. He didn’t have to carve his initials on the side of the oceans because he is the title holder. Christ did not have to put a brand on the cattle of a thousand hills because he is the proprietor. He did not have to take out a copy right on the songs of the birds because Christ is the author.
Jesus came down the stairway of heaven. He was born in Bethlehem, hidden in Egypt, raised in Nazareth, baptized in Jordan, and tempted in the wilderness. Christ performed miracles on the roadside. He healed multitudes without medicine. And charged nothing for his services. He conquered everything that came up against him.
And then, Jesus Christ took our sins up to Calvary and died for the world. He was buried in Joseph’s new tomb and on schedule rose up from the grave with the power of his omnipotence.
His name stands for free healing and full salvation. In fact, commercial scientist may be able to put a new suit on a man, but only Jesus can place a new man in a suit. And therefore, Jesus proceeds all others in their priority. Exceeds all others in their superiority. And succeeds all others in their finality.”
He is our Mighty God! You and I need to trust in him. Maybe today you are feeling weak. There is good news! The Mighty Jesus is able to give to us His strength. They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength. They shall mount up with wings as eagles!
Get in His presence and His strength can become yours!
- He is the Everlasting Father.
Now people who don’t understand the Trinity and believe in oneness theology or Jesus only have a hey day but they incorrectly interpret this. They say that because Jesus is the Everlasting Father it proves that Jesus and the Father are one in the same. Not so.
If you read in the Hebrews 5:9 it says “…He became the author of eternal salvation…” He is the author of Eternity. He is the father of Eternity. He is the father of Everlastingness. The creator of everlastingness!
Now understand that as a child Jesus has a beginning. But as the Son of God …he has no beginning. He is the author of everything that ever was! That is why we can read these powerful words Jesus Christ the same Yesterday Today and Forever.
As the Father of Everlasting we can trust him even at the most difficult points in life, especially as life comes to an end! When time is no more for us, we will be in the very presence of God. At the time of this writing I had recently came from my father-in-law’s home going service. I am so grateful that the Everlasting Father, the author of eternal salvation can be trusted.
You may have lost someone close to you this year. If they knew Jesus Christ. If the knew the everlasting Father, be assured you will one day be reunited.
- He is the Prince of Peace.
This means the chief or the head of inner tranquility. The night the Prince of Peace was born the angels announced PEACE on Earth…Good will toward men.
Because of Jesus, we have peace with God! When Christ went to the cross, He made it possible for us to have peace with God by settling the debt of guilt that clung to our souls. He paid the price for our sins, satisfying the wrath of God.
This morning, are you fighting God? Why not surrender your will and make peace with God? It is not difficult, just admit you are a sinner, turn from ways that displease God and accept what Christ did in your place confessing Christ as Savior and Lord. Peace with God is only possible through the shed blood of Jesus.
And then, we have the promise of inner peace. I hope your home this Christmas is filled with an inner peace. As you go through the activities of your day –Let the peace of God fill you!
And let me tell you the reason why we don’t have peace now and at other times in the year is because we try to find our own solutions to things that only the divine prince of peace has solutions for.
You can try as you may but you will not find a peaceful solution in a pill, or a vacation or a less stressful job until you know the Prince of Peace – Jesus Christ our Lord.
May the Prince of Peace be yours in all His fullness!