“Unto 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.”
The prophet Isaiah shared these comforting words with God’s people. The verses that come before this remind us that these words were originally spoken to people who were distressed; people who were experiencing the “darkness” of the world. He says: “The people walking in darkness have seen a great light; on those living in the land of the shadow of death a light has dawned” (Isa. 9:2).
God does not dismiss or overlook the fact that we, His people, live in a place that is filled with darkness, and distress, and sorrow, and trouble. Nowhere in His Word does He promise that, for His people, there will be no struggles. In fact, just the opposite is true. Jesus said: "Do not suppose that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I did not come to bring peace, but a sword” (Matt. 10:34); and “In this world you will have trouble” (Jn. 16:33). Does this mean that Jesus isn’t the “Prince of Peace”? NOT AT ALL! He didn’t stop by saying that the world is full of trouble. He went on to say: “But take heart! I have overcome the world."
We aren’t to go through life looking for perfection in the world. We are, however, to face life with hope and a faith that is rooted and grounded upon the character of our Lord. He has triumphed over the darkness.
· Wonderful Counselor - When we are distressed we have a wonderful divine counselor to whom we can turn for wisdom and comfort. He is the all-wise God.
· Mighty God - When we are overwhelmed by situations and circumstances we have an Almighty God who will come to our aid. He is able to do far more than we can think or imagine.
· Everlasting Father - If people disappoint us or the relationships we depend on are broken we have an Everlasting Father who will never leave nor forsake us. His loving arms are always open wide to hold, to comfort, to guide, and to protect us. He carries us like a shepherd carries a lamb, close to His heart. We can always call on Him and know that He hears us.
· Prince of peace - Even though the struggle with sin goes on around us, we know that a treaty of peace has been signed for us; signed with the precious blood of the Lamb of God. Even in the midst of the battle, we can call upon the Prince of peace in whom we have reconciliation with God and the hope of eternal life. His promise to us is a transcendent peace that outweighs and overrules the immediate circumstances (Php. 4:6-7).
Pastor Keith Andrews