Peace of the Prince

It’s early December and traditionally we hear familiar music with the lyrics “Wonderful, Counselor, The Mighty God, the Everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace.  How does Christ get the title “Prince of Peace” and how does he enact his duties?  
Lately we’ve seen so many absolute distractions, many of which seem peace threatening and even life-threatening.  Wars and rumors of wars, insults and harassment,  threats to our livelihood, health and well-being are all in the news and even in our physical space.  We are moments away from some new disaster, plot or illness predicted to spoil our future, our children or our legacy.  These distractions are merely but they are so easy to fall prey to time and again .  Circumstances can tempt us into feeling overwhelmed,  anxious, even forlorn.   
“But God, who is rich in mercy”,   made it so that we are free from these torments.  We never have to worry, or grow depressed.  Our King has provided us with a supernatural gift.  It is His peace.  It is unlike peace given by the world. [John 14:27] Like all of his gifts, its scope is beyond our imagination.
Paul’s letter to the Philippians provides the detail of how this peace works. In context the Apostle encourages us not to be anxious about anything [4:6],  then he says that God’s peace transcends all understanding, that is, its functioning is beyond anything we could know.  Finally, the classic Amplified Version reveals the full meaning hidden in the original Greek:
     7 And God’s peace [shall be yours, that tranquil state of a soul assured of its salvation through Christ, and so fearing nothing from God and being content with its earthly lot of whatever sort that is, that peace] which transcends all understanding shall garrison and mount guard over your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.  [AMP]
His peace shall “garrison and mount guard over your hearts and minds” that is, it will fortify and keep watch over your heart and mind.  This action is not passive, but active.  This action is not static but ongoing as long as we live in the Anointed Overcomer!  His peace adapts to your needs and carries us through our trials and tribulations.  Our need is to believe it and hold fast!  He is the reason for the Season!!

. . . and we beheld His glory

My wife calls me a grinch after the children’s story of the gremlin that tried to steal Christmas.  I’m not against Christmas.  I am against 1) the commercialization of Christmas and 2) the ongoing secular takeover of the Christmas holiday and subsequent separation of the “baby Jesus” from the beaten, scorned and betrayed Savior who arose triumphant from the grave.

Christmas does have it’s own joy and life as it embodies the hope of genuine reconciliation to God.  But this was kept secret until after His death and resurrection.  So much of the story was was kept hidden such that there may have been many thousand people who saw the young Jesus but had no idea that he was indeed the Christ [ the prophesied, anticipated and heralded Messiah].  The context of the story was that four hundred years had passed since a prophet had transmitted a word from God.  After such a long time, it would seem that God had forsaken us, that we were forlorn and lost.

But there were indeed “Good tidings of Great Joy” that the foretold Savior had come.  Isaiah declared “His name would be called Wonderful, Counselor, The Mighty God, the Everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace.  Of his Kingdom there would [will] be no end.”  [Isaiah 9:6-7a]

But only a few people actually celebrated the first Christmas.  The marvelous virgin-birth of the God-man, King of Kings was only REVEALED to a few as told by Luke the physician.  First were the shepherds watching their flocks.  Next the devout Simeon, who prayed for a chance to see God’s fulfillment of the promise.  Because he sought to see the Messiah and vigorously followed the leading of the Holy Spirit.

Anna the prophetess was at the temple also.  She saw the child and began an anthem of praise, declaring to everyone how the child would bring Jerusalem out of bondage.

The Magi were the last.  I wrote about them last year {http://www.phatonfruit.net/2015/12/25/the-faith-of-the-magi/}.  They traveled far to worship the coming King.  They arrived bearing gifts and were overwhelmed as they saw him.  They like those mentioned above, saw him for who he is.  He was not hidden in plain sight, He was revealed for who He is . . . and they beheld His glory.