Coming of the King – Advent peace

by | Dec 23, 2023 | December 2023 | 0 comments

This is the second in a series of studies on Advent.

 ‘Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace to those on whom his favour rests.’
Luke 2:14 (NIVUK)

When we use the word ‘peace’ we often mean the absence of war, an end to hostilities and peace broke out. However, while the Hebrew word for peace shalom does encompass the end of war, it has a much richer meaning, including harmony, wholeness, completeness, 

prosperity, welfare, and tranquillity.1 Shalom is the state of being that humanity, and all creation, had with God before sin entered our world, and to which we are destined to return. But how is this going to happen?

The Old Testament gives us a glimpse. Incredibly, it speaks of the promised Messiah coming as a baby: ‘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 Counsellor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the greatness of his government and peace there will be no end… ’ (Isaiah 9:6-7 emphasis mine). The one to be born in Bethlehem Ephrathah will be our peace (Micah 5:2, 5).

It’s when we get to the New Testament that these prophecies are fulfilled in Jesus Christ. He came to usher in this kingdom of peace and through his death we, who were once God’s enemies, now have peace with him (Romans 5:1). The kingdom has come, and we have received the shalom of God, but the world is still in a dire mess. How should we, as the people of God, live in this world awaiting the second coming of the king and the establishment of the kingdom of peace in all its fulness? 

As Jesus was about to leave this earth and return to his Father he told his disciples, ‘Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you…’ (John 14:27), and through the Holy Spirit, we experience this peace which is beyond our understanding (Philippians 4:7). We are therefore to join with the Father, Son, and Spirit in spreading the shalom of God as, and where, we are able. Blessed indeed are the peacemakers – it is how we will be known as the children of God (Matthew 5:9).

So, during this Advent season, let’s reflect on our role in spreading God’s peace in a hurt and dying world. May we participate with the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, and actively pursue peace (1 Peter 3:11) as we await the fulness of God’s shalom through the second Advent of Jesus Christ. 

Loving Father, God of peace, fill us with your shalom so that we might share your peace in all our relationships. Help us to long for Jesus to return so the world can truly be at peace. In Jesus’s name, Amen.


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