A downside of the Christmas season for many of us is the tensions that arise. Wars fought in families surface and emerge during holiday celebrations. Emotions are heightened as a “perfect Christmas” backdrop stands in stark contrast to what many actually face.
Culture wars are waged over the different types of celebrations (and holidays) that people participate in. The lonely and the bitter often enter into battle with those around them who are caught up in what seems unrealistic or unfair joy. A spirit of competition arise in stores buying presents. There are even wars in our hearts over jealousy and greed.
Ironic, almost, that during the season of peace so many of us are so often at war. Even moreso, that we enter into battle while celebrating the birth of the victor. Christ reigns victorious.
When we think of Him coming as a boy, we picture a peaceful baby and a peaceful manger scene. But in fact the war was won through that baby. His arrival was a declaration of war to the enemy. And He came, in His words,
“not bringing peace, but a sword”
We read that, and then we read:
“But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far away have been brought near by the blood of Christ. For he himself is our peace.”
The one who is victorious, even over death, is also peace Himself. The sword and the peace are bound up together. The good news for us is that the sword He brought and the peace He is have won.
Through the battles we fight during Christmas time, we do well to remember that. He came as righteousness, piercing the soul and dividing right from wrong perfectly. He also came as our peace.
He’s won the war that engulfs all others –even our family battles, even our cultural tensions, even the sin in our hearts. That picture of peace reigns victorious.
Behold, peace Himself and the sword He brings.
Behold, our commander in every battle.
Behold, the victor who has won the war and leads into new life forevermore!