Emails flood my inbox. Black Friday and Cyber Monday messages promise that if I click on a link and buy, my every desire can be fulfilled. If I miss those sales, no worries; just for me, they extended the sale. But if I don’t take advantage of these limited offers, I lose.
God used prophets to deliver His messages. Prophets sometimes warned of looming disaster because of Israel’s disobedience and turning away from God. His people truly did lose when they ignored God’s warnings. The kingdom of Israel divided into two, invaded by enemy armies, the people taken captive and forced into exile in foreign lands.
But the prophets also provided a message of hope, the promise of God’s salvation and redemption.
“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a future and a hope.” (Jeremiah 29:11)
The Promise of the Hope of the World
The greatest hope promised by the prophets looked forward to the coming of the Messiah. Jesus
Isaiah promised the hope of the world, coming in a way no one would expect, as a baby. But oh, the wonder of this 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 Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. (Isaiah 9:6)
Meditate on the Promise
Spend some time thinking about this promise.
For to us a child is born.
Jesus, God’s one, and only Son, with us. In the flesh. A child who grew up on earth and knows all of the human experiences and emotions. Just like us. Don’t we want someone in our lives who knows us so intimately they understand what we feel? How we hurt? Jesus does. He can relate completely.
To us a son is given.
Jesus is also fully God in a human body. The second Person of the Trinity. He existed before time began and left His heavenly home to walk among us, showing us the character and nature of God.
And the government will be on his shoulders.
This part of the prophecy still waits to be fulfilled. It provides hope for our future. In the middle of the ever-growing chaos of our world, when Jesus returns, He will rule with righteousness and peace.
He will be called
When we need help, we seek a counselor. Someone who listens and understands. Who offers encouragement and gives direction. Jesus is our counselor. The One to turn to in times of confusion and anxiety. He knows the needs of our hearts and He alone can provide exactly what we need to take the next step. And the next one.
Our God is a mighty God. Powerful. Through Jesus, our sins are forgiven. Death defeated. We don’t need to fear anything.
Everlasting. Eternal. Never ending. He rules with truth and righteousness and promises all things will work together for good. His good and therefore our good.
Prince of Peace
We long for peace. True peace. The confidence that even in the deepest valley, the most violent storms of life, we don’t need to fear. God’s love, mercy, and grace reach into our hearts, replacing fear with peace because we know God is on our side. We look at the names listed in Isaiah 9:6 and God’s peace guards our hearts and minds.
The prophets offered hope. In the darkest times of Israel, they promised God had not forgotten. He worked in their lives.
We have the same promise of hope today. As we prepare our hearts for Christmas, live with the peace that comes from the hope we have in Jesus.
May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. (Romans 15:13)
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