Christmas Eve – Sunday 25th December 2016 – Isaiah 9:2-7
There’s been 3 readings from Isaiah on the Sundays leading up to Christmas day and they all involve a child as a symbol of hope, that things are changing, that God is working afresh. As we hear about this child born in a manger at our midnight masses perhaps in faith we too can see Jesus as this symbol: for those of us listening, God wants to do a new work in us too .
Normally I would give the most probable historical basis of the passage but perhaps as it is midnight I won’t. OK, except perhaps one sentence.
This was a promise for then and as we’ve read it, it becomes a lens through which we can see Jesus and how he will be.
The child Isaiah is promising will be called:
- Wonderful Counsellor – if we have been in counselling we might relate what the counsellor has shown us (without the details) so we now know ourselves better. Jesus is not just a good counsellor – he’s wonderful. Through a relationship with him we know ourselves better. We have value; we are loved.
- Mighty God – My God is so big so strong and so mighty there’s nothing that he cannot do.. It might be worth reminding people of this children’s song and sometimes in our emphasis of a loving God we forgot that the world’s problems need a powerful God.
- Everlasting Father – Unlike Father Christmas who only comes if we’re good. Are poor children not good? Jesus is our everlasting Father.
- Prince of Peace – May this Prince of Peace bring harmony this Christmas to our homes.
Which one do you need now is a way of concluding.