In an earlier post, I stated that because Jesus is both King and God he has the authority to proclaim peace for the entire world. Peace is something that people yearn for, but rarely see in it’s truest sense. When peace is enacted, it normally doesn’t involve a willing laying down of weapons, but a forced hand, maybe it’s a nation that has been ruined by war and simply doesn’t have the money or man-power left to fight, or perhaps a smaller nation bullied by a larger one into silence.
Jesus brings peace that doesn’t have a forced hand and doesn’t involve a begrudging compromise. Instead He will unite all people under his rule and bring peace by restoring humanity’s common purpose: to worship and glorify God. This is a purpose that unites us all, because we are created in God’s image. In fact, worship of God is the only thing that can bring our hearts true peace. St. Augustine states in his Confessions that “You have made us for yourself, O Lord, and our heart is restless until it rests in you.” In the same way that each person is restless without God, each nation is restless and raging when we are not under His rule.
One of my favorite Christmas Carols is “Come Thou Long Expected Jesus.” In it these ideas of universal peace are reinforced because when Jesus comes to reign in the New Heavens and the New Earth and in every man’s heart, then the peace and worship of God will unite all mankind.
Here are the lyrics:
Come, Thou long-expected Jesus, born to set Thy people free;
from our fears and sins release us; let us find our rest in Thee.
Israel’s strength and consolation, hope of all the earth Thou art;
dear desire of every nation, joy of every longing heart.
Born Thy people to deliver, born a child, and yet a King,
born to reign in us forever, now Thy gracious kingdom bring.
By Thine own eternal Spirit rule in all our hearts alone;
by Thine own sufficient merit, raise us to Thy glorious throne.