“Glory to God in highest heaven, and peace on earth
to those with whom God is pleased." Luke 2:14 NLT
The road to my daughter’s school was blocked by orange barrels and police cars. Detour signs pointed away from the school. In reply to my anxious questions, a policeman told me to approach the school from the other side, away from the federal office building across the street. I followed the detour signs, my mind filled with images of the Twin Towers crashing to the ground only moments before being notified of the closing of my daughter’s school due to its location.
As the new year approaches, we are warned of the possibility of great financial turmoil, and recession. We hear news reports of innocent children gunned down in school, terrorist attacks on an American embassy, the war in Afghanistan, missiles in North Korea, and nuclear threats from Iran. “Peace on earth, good will to men,” is no more certain than when the angels said the words to the shepherds outside Bethlehem over 2000 years ago.
Prophecy said the Christ would be born in Bethlehem, but Joseph and Mary traveled there, when she was heavy with child, to be counted and taxed. Israel was ruled by the evil, half Jewish king, Herod, under the control of Caesar Augustus and his corrupt empire. Herod, threatened by the birth of one called the “King of the Jews,” had all baby boys under the age of two slaughtered. Warned by an angel, Joseph and Mary took the child, entrusted to them by God, and fled to Egypt where he would be safe.
So what were the angels talking about, if even Jesus was persecuted and put to death by evil men, and over 2000 years later, we still suffer severe turmoil with no easy answers?
Notice the words in the scripture, “to those with whom God is pleased.” These six words hold the answer. John 1:10-13 tells us who pleases God: “He came into the very world he created, but the world didn’t recognize him. He came to his own people, and even they rejected him. But to all who believed him and accepted him, he gave the right to become children of God. They are reborn—not with a physical birth resulting from human passion or plan, but a birth that comes from God.”
As this new year begins, don’t spend time in despair over the problems of the world, or even the problems you personally face. Look to the Prince of Peace, Jesus Christ, as the Savior who died for your sins, and the Lord to whom, one day, every knee will bow and every tongue confess, as Lord of all.
Please Him by not just believing He exists, but obeying His word. Then His peace can begin to reign in your heart, no matter what the coming year should bring.
Holy Bible. New Living Translation copyright© 1996, 2004, 2007 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.
© Copyright 2012 by Norma Gail Thurston Holtman and http://.normagail-2mefromhim.blogspot.com. All Rights Reserved.