Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among those with whom he is pleased!”
The Greek word used in this verse for peace [eirēnē] means “a set of favorable circumstances involving peace and tranquility.” In some languages, the meaning of ‘peace’ or ‘tranquility’ may be expressed in a negative form, for example, ‘to be without trouble’ or ‘to have no worries’ or ‘to sit down in one’s heart.’ Here in Luke 2:14, this peace that the angels speak about to the shepherds is a peace that comes only to those who know Him as Lord and Savior.
This announcement of peace on earth is not the Pax Romana, brought about by a Roman imperial decree. Nor is it the cessation of warfare between two warring nations. The peace the angels sing of is the transcendent peace of God which brings an end to the conﬂict between humanity and God. To those who hear the message and repent, the war is over. Peace is incarnated in the Prince of Peace (see Isaiah 9:6), who came to reconcile us with God.
When we become reconciled to God and receive this everlasting peace, Christ’s Spirit indwells us, working in us to change our perspective from a human point of view to God’s point of view. We literally become a very different person! Scripture calls us a “new creation” (1 Corinthians 5:17). The old life is gone; a new life has begun!
This reconciling peace is a gift from God. With this gift comes responsibility. God brought us back to Himself through Christ. And God has given us the task of spreading His peace as we share the amazing message He has given us: a message of reconciliation through which people can be reconciled to God.
This message is called the Good News—the gospel. Like the angels proclaiming peace from the heavens, we get to tell those around us that Christ has come to give us peace for all eternity.
In 2 Corinthians 6, the Apostle Paul begs and pleads with the churches in Corinth not to accept this marvelous gift of God’s kindness and then ignore it. Paul goes on to quote Isaiah 49:8, “At just the right time, I heard you. On the day of salvation, I helped you.” Indeed, the “right time” is now. Today is the day of salvation. Do these two things today if you haven’t already:
- Accept Christ as Lord and Savior.
- Share the Good News with someone today.