Have you ever wondered what it would have been like to be with the shepherds that Holy Night when Jesus was born? To see the host of angels in all their glory proclaiming Jesus’ birth? Why shepherds? Why not the mayor of the city, the wealthy land owners instead? Scripture gives us a picture of the scene played out on the hills near Bethlehem in Luke 2:8-14 “And in the same region there were shepherds out in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And an angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were filled with great fear. And the angel said to them, “Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. And this will be a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in swaddling cloths and lying in a manger.” And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying, “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among those with whom he is pleased!”
Jesus came to earth to be “God with us” as the angel explained to Joseph and He came to save us from our sins. Proclaiming His birth to lowly shepherds helps us see that He came for the likes of you and me. He did not come for the wealthy or powerful, worldly standards of importance, but for those who would believe. The chorus of angels proclaimed Him Lord and said He would bring peace. Jesus describes His peace in John 14:27 “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.” His peace is not of this world and will bring freedom from fear, trouble and hope. Paul describes Jesus’ peace in Romans 5:1 “Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.” Jesus’ peace comes through faith in Him and declares us ‘not guilty’ before God. That is eternal peace that brings hope and freedom. Appearing to humble shepherds confirms the purpose for Christ’s mission on earth which was to save the everyday person. Outside appearances or wealth are meaningless to Jesus as He deals with the heart and faith. Hebrews 11:6 tells us “And without faith it is impossible to please him, for whoever would draw near to God must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who seek him.”
Are you like the shepherds that night, open and willing to behold God? They were filled with fear at the appearance and voices of the angels. What message does God want to send you this Christmas? Be like the shepherds and have a willing spirit and open heart, and He will bring you His peace.
Have faith in Jesus and receive His peace today!