Christmas is coming soon amidst a year of social, economic, environmental, political, racial and health crises. 2020 has been painful for people across the globe. We long for peace.
The biblical concept of peace comes from the Hebrew word shalom. It has a wide semantic range including notions of totality, completeness, cosmic order, success, fulfillment, wholeness, harmony, security and wellbeing—all parts of the foundation of peace. Shalom is a comprehensive image of the cosmic order ordained by God, a peaceable Kingdom that finds its meaning and function as it conforms to His purpose (Genesis 1:1-26). Shalom describes the complete, harmonious relationship between creation and Creator—a harmony that was shattered when the powers of evil and human rebellion distorted God’s good creation (Genesis 3).
The fundamental truth of Christmas is that Jesus came to reconcile humanity with God, people with each other and ourselves within. Jesus—our Shalom—was sent to restore the harmony of God’s cosmic order!
In the midst of all that is happening around us or within us, let us be comforted by the reality that Christ is our peace. Jesus is the bridge between racial and cultural divides, leading the way to reconciled relationships and, ultimately, peace.
Christmas is more than a social or cultural celebration. Christmas is centered on Jesus, our Shalom. Thank God today that He was pleased through Christ “to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross” (Colossians 1:20).
“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.” —John 14:27