Wednesday, December 14

 

Time Alone With God daily devotional

Written by Pastor Phil Stout, JAXNAZ Church

Read: Luke 2:1-15

Luke 2:1-15

New International Version (NIV)

The Birth of Jesus
2 In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. 2 (This was the first census that took place while[a] Quirinius was governor of Syria.) 3 And everyone went to their own town to register.

4 So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. 5 He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. 6 While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, 7 and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them.

8 And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. 9 An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. 10 But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. 11 Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. 12 This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”

13 Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying,

14 “Glory to God in the highest heaven,
and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.”
15 When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.”

Start:

Consider: I hope you’ll read this passage repeatedly during this time of the year. There is so much there for us to comprehend and so much there in which to rejoice. Today let’s look at the proclamation of the angels. From the translation usually used in these devotionals we read…

“Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.” (2:14, NIV)

The traditional way we have heard it comes from the King James Version of the Bible…

“Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.”

However you read it, this message is “good news of great joy that will be for all the people” (2:10). The promise of the Old Testament was the promise of peace. The promise on the day Jesus was born was the promise of peace. Peace on earth is not some romantic notion that should simply give us warm feelings during the month of December. Peace on earth is not the delusion of simple-minded people who are naïve regarding the evil in our world. Peace on earth is a promise from God. And, as we see so often in scripture, his promise is our calling. We are called to be God’s agents of peace on earth.

Pray: 

Lord, make me an instrument of your peace.

Where there is hatred, let me sow love;

Where there is injury, pardon;

Where there is doubt, faith;

Where there is despair, hope;

Where there is darkness, light;

Where there is sadness, joy.

O divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek

To be consoled as to console,

To be understood as to understand,

To be loved as to love;

For it is in giving that we receive;

It is in pardoning that we are pardoned;

It is in dying to self that we are born to eternal life.

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