Christmas 2016 Celebration in the Midst of Evil. Part 4. Celebration wins!
It was a time of terror, of tyranny and treachery in high places, a time when evil appeared to be unfettered, a time of uncertainty, and a despot ruled in the Roman province of Judea.
Caesar Augustus didn’t have a clue when he ordered a census and Herod, in his evil, also had his part in fulfilling prophecy.
The King of Kings is born in Bethlehem and the heavens are open. Celebration wins.
As it was…
Longing – Simeon longing for the consolation of Israel “now let Your servant depart in peace”
Fulfilment – heralded by John, “the crooked roads shall become straight… all mankind will see God’s salvation”
Joy – the angel to the shepherds “I bring you good news of great joy”
Glory – heavens opened “Glory to God in the highest and on earth peace”
Worship and awe – Magi from the East “bowed and worshiped”
Mystery – the star “stopped over the place where the child was”
… is now.
Australian Christian Lobby HQ bombing; averted terror attacks in Victoria; terror in Syria, in Germany, in Turkey, in Sudan…
So, we too Lord long for peace, for now and for when You put all things right, when crooked roads are made straight – in the meantime we praise You, the Word becoming flesh and making Your dwelling among us. We have seen Your glory, Your grace and truth. We too bow and worship.
We pray Lord for all those who seek to inflict terror. We pray that they too may know the blessing of crooked things made straight, fulfilment of hidden longings, even Lord to experience awe this Christmas with realisation that they too may be forgiven and restored.
Help us Lord to extend the hand of forgiveness and peace to those who hate and seek to hurt. Yes, for celebration to triumph in ourselves and in others. Amen.
So now – stay excited. Tell The Story. The King of Kings is born in Bethlehem!
Sing, dance, exchange gifts and good wishes. Forgive, be at peace with one another. There is something bigger than ourselves.
Lachlan Dunjey. 24 December 2016.