Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Peace on earth, good will toward all

And it came to pass in those days, that there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus, that all the world should be taxed... And all went to be taxed, every one into his own city. And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judaea, unto the city of David, which is called Bethlehem; (because he was of the house and lineage of David:) to be taxed with Mary his espoused wife, being great with child. And so it was, that, while they were there, the days were accomplished that she should be delivered. And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn.

And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid. And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger. And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, "Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men". (Luke 2: 1-14)


Breachway said...

Amen--Merry Xmas to you and all your bloggers Tim. Wishing all my feoolw Cheshirites peace and goodwill for 2009. God bless our troops. Keep them safe.

Brother Mychal said...

I’ve always been struck that the shepherds were the first to whom God revealed the joyful news.

Shepherds in Jesus’ time were low-life outcasts. They drank and swore and who knows what else. Respectable people did not associate with them. And this would not be the last time that Jesus would keep company with low-lifes and sinners.

Luke continues the story: “The shepherds went in haste and found … the infant lying in the manger … (then) they made known the message they had been told about this child, and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds told them.”

Thus these shepherds, all sinners, were also the first apostles, the first humans to proclaim the Good News that God is with us in our world and in our lives. There’s hope for everyone!

Merry Christmas to everyone, and may everyone be renewed by the possibilities of peace and good will.