We continue looking at the wonderful names of Jesus as they have been revealed in the bible. Specifically, we have been looking at the titles of Jesus declared by Isaiah in chapter 9 v 6. We have seen Him as the ‘Wonderful Counsellor’ referring to his omniscience (all knowing); ‘Mighty God’ referring to His omnipotence (all powerful); ‘Everlasting Father’ referring to the fact that He is in all places at all times (omnipresence).
Today we are going to explore the fact that He is the ‘Prince of Peace’. He is not a prince in the context of being the son of a king; the Hebrew word used here is much broader. Think of words such as; chief, governor, leader, overseer, ruler.
Mankind has always craved peace but it has always been elusive. Many people of our generation would sign up to the popular song ‘imagine’ by John Lennon:
Imagine there’s no countries
It isn’t hard to do
Nothing to kill or die for
And no religion too
Imagine all the people
Living life in peace…
You may say I’m a dreamer
But I’m not the only one
I hope someday you’ll join us
And the world will be as one
Wonderful sentiments and dreams to have, but mankind has tried to achieve peace throughout history and never managed it. The sins of pride, covetousness, jealousy etc all make living life in peace impossible. Simply hoping it will all be alright with just a bit more effort is not going to change a single thing.
Jesus is the only one who can bring true and lasting peace and He does this in three ways:
(1) Peace between man and God. This is the most important peace to have. It is what makes peace everywhere else possible. This is the reason that Jesus came; to restore the relationship between mankind and God. “Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.” (Romans 5:1)
(2) Peace with ourselves. No amount of meditation can give us the peace that comes into our hearts when we are at peace with our creator. Having Jesus living in us is the only true and lasting peace, which brings an authentic ‘inner serenity’. “And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts.” (Colossians 3:15)
(3) Peace with others. This is the outworking of firstly being at peace with God and secondly being at peace with ourselves. We then have the capacity to bring God’s peace to other people. It is virtually impossible to create peace with others without the other two already in place. “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.” (Matthew 5:9)
The peace we are longing for is the peace that Jesus will bring fully when He comes again. As the ‘Wonderful Counsellor’ He will bring a wise and perfect peace. As the ‘Mighty God’ He will have the power to ensure peace and as the ‘Everlasting Father’ His peace will last throughout eternity.
His final kingdom will be founded on peace at the culmination of all of history. He will bring all things together through His perfect rule and reign. I shall leave you with two passages (also in Isaiah) which show us in small detail what His future reign will look like:
He shall judge between the nations,
and shall decide disputes for many peoples;
and they shall beat their swords into plowshares,
and their spears into pruning hooks;
nation shall not lift up sword against nation,
neither shall they learn war anymore. (Isaiah 2:4)
The wolf shall dwell with the lamb,
and the leopard shall lie down with the young goat,
and the calf and the lion and the fattened calf together;
and a little child shall lead them.
7 The cow and the bear shall graze;
their young shall lie down together;
and the lion shall eat straw like the ox.
8 The nursing child shall play over the hole of the cobra,
and the weaned child shall put his hand on the adder’s den.
9 They shall not hurt or destroy
in all my holy mountain;
for the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the Lord
as the waters cover the sea. (Isaiah 11:6-9)