In the name of the Father and of the +Son and of the Holy Spirit, Amen.
He was born and has defeated evil. But His complete victory is not yet fully realized. So we live in a time of struggle. Personal struggle against evil, wickedness, the selfishness within, and overt evil without. One day He will defeat evil completely at the end of time when the justice—which our souls ache for, which the blood of all the innocents ever shed cries out from the ground for, which creation itself creaks and groans for—is realized. That day is coming. That day will dawn on us in glory and light. For the God who appeared in meekness will appear again with the hosts of heaven. When He who came in humility will declare Himself the Mighty God, the everlasting Father, the Prince of peace.
His zeal will accomplish this great righting of wrongs, this final reckoning, this settling of scores, this justice long desired. But woe to you who are zealous for that day, who desire this righting of wrongs, who crave justice and desire to see it done swiftly without mercy. Woe to you, for you must first recognize your own unjust ways. You must acknowledge your own sin-soaked secrets and the part you play in the universal injustice which is life in this world. If you truly crave peace on earth you must first humble yourself and realize that you are an agent of unrest in our world. Humble yourself as your God did in becoming a helpless baby and embrace this babe who comes to heal your brokenness.
For this prince’s coming means peace for you with God. And His coming into your life teaches you to say no to wickedness, to selfish indulgence, to mindless sensuality, to sloth, ignorance, gluttony, and the legion of vices twisted in themselves destroying our world around us. For before He appears again He desires to teach you to renounce these things. He wants you to be freed of your rampant worship of materialism and instead worship He who gave all matter to us as a gift. And embracing Him in faith He teaches you to live full, whole lives, delighting in His creation, sharing its joys with others, using it as a blessing to each other and not a curse. For He Himself came into this world to rule it, not as a cleptocratic king on the take, but as a Father to His people. A wise man imparting wisdom to the simple. Our God shepherding His wayward sheep to His eternal pastures.
For though His peace is not yet fully realized it has been declared and given to you. “Glory to God in the highest and peace on whom His favour rests,” the angels said. This means His favour rests on all mankind. This Prince came to give His Father’s favour to all. This Prince came to right was is wrong, to blot out iniquity and bring light and immortality to light by sucking all evil, all wickedness, all injustice, all entropy into Himself. Just as a blackhole sucks all matter and light within its pull into it, so He came into humanity to suck our inward evil into Himself. The source of life and light took all darkness and emptiness into Himself, nailing all the evil we human’s have ever thought or done in His body to a crucible of justice. On that cross this Mighty Prince swallowed up death with life, evil with good, darkness with light. In Him all wickedness is banished. In Him darkness is dispersed. Good prevails.
Let us this day in faith go to Bethlehem to see this miracle which God our Father has made known to us through this Prince who is born.
In the name of +Jesus, Amen.
—Pastor David Haberstock
Epiphany Lutheran Church
Thunder Bay, ON