Reflection: Let’s not just save this passage for reading at Christmas time! It’s so wonderful to be reminded that Jesus came to bring peace – that this was the very first declaration about his life – ‘Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace to those on whom his favour rests.’ The fact that the first recipients of this message were shepherds – some of the most lowly of people in that day – immediately demonstrates that the Messiah has indeed come for all people – not just the self-proclaimed important or a select few. And in this moment, it rests on a group of smelly, culturally reviled, character assassinated people. This is such a powerful illustration of God’s heart of peace for the least, the lost and the lonely – that after thousands of years dropping hints for his rescue plan of light and peace for the human race that he would finally herald it with an announcement to a group of lowly shepherds! But wait, what do the words ‘on whom his favour rest’ indicate? It sounds selective! Biblical scholars tell us that Luke had a particular sympathy for the Jews as God’s chosen people. He affirms the special place of the ancient people of God so this is where he starts his Gospel but fortunately he doesn’t stop there. Come back tomorrow to read some more!
Question: Are you lowly enough to accept the peace that only the Messiah, the Lord can bring?
Prayer: Lord, I know that only you can bring true peace. May your spirit of peace fall afresh and rest on me today. Amen.