THE JOY OF CHRISTMAS

By Pastor Suresh Dass Joseph
josephdass@optusnet.com.au

Dear reader, it is with much joy we bring you the word of God. This is the last month of 2023, and Christmas is on the lips of everyone. All over the world, families, friends, and neighbours are coming together to celebrate Christmas. Christmas is always associated with peace as much as it is associated with love and joy. In Isaiah 9:6, the prophet Isaiah prophesied that the Messiah would be the Prince of Peace.
And when Jesus was born, angels sang of peace. Luke 2:14 – Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, goodwill toward men!”

Here are 3 ways in which the coming of Jesus into the world brought us peace.
1. Jesus brought us peace with God by coming into this world.
Romans 5:1 says, ‘Therefore since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.”
Because of Adam’s (the first-person God created) sin (disobedience to God), we naturally are not at peace with God. Our sins separate us from God. We did not have easy access to God, the Father. But we are brought into a peaceful relationship with the Father through Jesus’ death on the cross and our Faith in Him.
How can anyone who puts their faith in Christ be at peace with the Father? One simple answer: it is because of Christ’s finished work on the cross.
Isaiah 53:5: “He was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon him, and by his wounds, we are healed.”
Since He took away that punishment, we have peace with Father.

2. Jesus brought us peace with ourselves by coming into this world.
Though peace is a Christmas message, peace is not just limited to the Christmas season—our inner beings constantly long for peace.
Jesus promises peace in all seasons of our life. The Prince of Peace is ready to reign in all areas of our life.
In John 14:27, Jesus says: Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.
And Jesus also said that we could find this peace only in Him.
John 16:33 – I have told you these things so you may have peace in Me. The verse continues, you will have suffering in this world. Be courageous! I have conquered the world.”
The peace that Jesus gives is contrasted with the problems we may have in this world. The peace that he gives is not comparable to anything.
Thus, Paul writes in Philippians 4:7 – Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.

3. By coming into this world, Jesus brought us peace with others
By bringing peace with self and God, the Lord Jesus also helps us have peaceful relationships with others.
In Romans 12:18, Paul says, “If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone.”
One of our many challenges is when our relationships are broken or in chaos. And when we find it difficult to mend the fractured relationship, we need the Prince of Peace to intervene and bring peace and restoration to our relationships.
Jesus came to bridge the gaps, unite people, and restore broken relationships.
As followers of Jesus, we can live in peace with others. Colossians 3:15 says, “And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to which also you were called in one body; and be thankful.”
Let the peace of God rule our hearts, now and forever. Amen!
I wish you a blessed, happy, and joyous Christmas on behalf of my family and church family.

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