“For unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given, and the government will be upon His shoulder. And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the increase of His government and peace there will be no end, upon the throne of David and over His kingdom, to order it and establish it with judgment and justice from that time forward, even forever. The zeal of the LORD of hosts will perform this.” Isaiah 9:6-7
Where is peace on earth? It is certainly not found in wars and terror over borders. It isn’t where gangs and criminals roam the streets preying on the weak and helpless. There is no peace in broken abusive marriages and ravaged families. One cannot find it where prejudice and hatred exist because of skin color, ethnic background, or religious beliefs. Peace is absent from the clinics where the most innocent among us are torn to pieces and put out with tomorrow’s garbage. It is often elusive to the elderly and feeble as well. So many things trample on peace; surely there is no peace on earth.
Wherever the Prince of Peace rules, there is peace, and it begins in every heart ordered and established with His judgment and justice. In one yielded heart at a time, “…the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. (Phil 4:7)
Men, women, and children from all nations are invited to partake of His peace. Whatever hue of skin, they come. Peoples of a thousand tongues, they come. Converts from all manner of beliefs, come too. They gather at the foot of the Cross and become a part of the same Body, and it is a wondrous thing. The zeal of the Lord of Hosts performs this. There the Prince of Peace promises, “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.” (John 14:27)
As the world gives? How does the world give peace? Peace has been achieved for a time through diplomacy and treaties. Even a handshake can bring a measure of peace. Still, peace seems to run out with the using, and conflict arises once again. The peace the world gives is impersonal, elusive, shallow, transitory, and eventually, comes to nothing.
And what is the world’s answer to God’s offer of peace on earth?
“Never!” the world defiantly declares, “We will sign another treaty, shake one more hand. We’ll lower the standards. We’ll compromise on every issue. Peace will come through blind tolerance. Unity will come by accepting everyone’s differences. (And anyone who differs with us will not be tolerated!) Then, then, we will have peace!!!”
The folly of it reminds one of Jeremiah’s days. That culture, too, had held its collective nose and jumped into the cesspool of moral bankruptcy, false gods, and lack of absolutes. And the world’s prophets trumpeted, “Peace, peace…”, But Jeremiah said, “There is no peace…no peace has come, and there is only trouble and terror everywhere.” (6:14, 14:19 TLB)
Sound familiar? Peace on earth, apart from the Prince of Peace? Never!
The Apostle John in the Revelation saw: “…a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, tribe, people and language, standing before the throne and in front of the Lamb.” (7:9 NIV) They stand as one, not because of their diversity, but because of their sameness – all have accepted God’s offer of peace through Jesus Christ, the Prince of Peace.
That glorious scene in heaven begins here on earth. Jesus said, “The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few.” (Matt 9:37 NIV) Christians need to be busy in the harvest fields, not entangled in the world’s feeble attempts to give peace. But remember the harvester does not hate the harvest. We reap with love, gentleness, and “If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone.” (Rom 12:18)
We must share the Prince of Peace with every nation, tribe, people, and language one heart at a time; which will then touch families, communities, nations and the world.
For it is true: Only where the Prince of Peace rules, shall there be peace – even, Peace on Earth.