Hello everyone and welcome to the Hope for Today broadcast. I’m Doran Wengerd – your host and founder of Wengerd Ministries – where we are Delivering Hope to Every Heart…
Well I’m excited to say Merry Christmas and Happy New Year from my side of the world! Whether you’re watching from America or another country, I have a message for you today that brings Hope and Joy year-round and all around the World.
I know that the traditions in America are not the same as in other countries, so I would like to take some time to talk about that and what it means to me as a child of God.
The title to the message today is: Peace on Earth!
This is a very, very special time, because it is when we celebrate the birth of Jesus into the world.
Most everyone here in America celebrates Christmas by giving gifts, and spending time together as families, but there is a much deeper celebration going on in the hearts of True Believers in Jesus.
It began with angels appearing to Mary and Joseph, and that by itself is miraculous indeed. However,
I want to focus on the specific words spoken by angels to the shepherds who were watching their flocks by night.
Let’s read Luke 2:4-14
Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judea, to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and lineage of David,
to be registered with Mary, his betrothed wife, who was with child.
So it was, that while they were there, the days were completed for her to be delivered.
And she brought forth her firstborn Son, and wrapped Him in swaddling cloths, and laid Him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.
Now there were in the same country shepherds living out in the fields, keeping watch over their flock by night.
And behold, an angel of the Lord stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were greatly afraid.
Then the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid, for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy which will be to all people.
“For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.
12-18-19 Peace on Earth Chinese study “And this will be the sign to you: You will find a Babe wrapped in swaddling cloths, lying in a manger.”
And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying:
“Glory to God in the highest, And on earth peace, goodwill toward men!” AMEN!
So, what is this “Peace on Earth, Goodwill toward men” that the angels were talking about?
We don’t need to look very far to see that there definitely is not “Peace on Earth”. In fact, if we allow ourselves to focus only on outward circumstances, we might be tempted to believe that Peace is not even a realistic expectation. This could even be in your own relationships, finances, or health.
Where is the “Peace” the angels were promising?
Now, I want you to change your perspective, and view the time of Jesus’ birth from the point of view of God the Father himself. What was HE thinking and feeling? Can you imagine what was going through HIS heart and mind? It had been thousands of years since God had made a covenant with Abraham, and here were the events unfolding to bring about the fulfillment of that covenant!
Even though I’m sure we’ve all had to wait for something to take place in our lives, there is no possible way that anyone can truly appreciate the anticipation God felt as the angels announced the birth of HIS SON into the world as a man.
God had promised the FULLNESS OF BLESSING to come upon the descendents of Abraham.
However, before that could happen The Law was given to Moses to demonstrate the utter hopelessness of the condition of mankind before a Holy and Righteous God.
I know it’s strange to think of it this way, but the separation of mankind from God had to be highlighted, so the redemption to God would be accepted.
When the angels announced the birth of Jesus to the shepherds, they were not saying that there would automatically be peace from mankind to mankind. God was announcing that all provision has arrived to finally make eternal peace between God and Man. This is why the verses say, “Peace on Earth, Goodwill TOWARD man”.
God had been desiring peace with Men and Women for generations and generations, and now finally mankind was standing at the threshold of this reality. God was saying this through the words of the angels to the shepherds.
HE was saying, “The time of separation is ending. The time of Great Grace has begun with the birth of Jesus. The Kingdom of Heaven has come to Earth.”
From the beginning when Adam and Eve sinned in the Garden of Eden, there had been a requirement for righteousness that could not be paid. The sting of death (which is sin) was upon every person born into the world, because Adam and Eve lost their right to immortality through disobedience to God.
The only way for that requirement to be paid was for a perfect human to be born and eventually to be killed as a sacrifice for all sin. At that point of sacrifice, the mortal human would put on immortality again, and anyone who believed could receive the payment of the righteous requirement.
We are now walking in the reality of what happened when Jesus went to the cross as the sacrifice and payment for our sins. I would like to read some verses which describe what happened when Jesus was killed on our behalf, and to remind you that we cannot separate out the birth of Jesus from his death and resurrection.
1 Corinthians 15:53-58
For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality.
So when this corruptible has put on incorruption, and this mortal has put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written: “Death is swallowed up in victory.”
“O Death, where is your sting?
O Hades, where is your victory?”
The sting of death is sin, and the strength of sin is the law.
But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.
Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your labor is not in vain in the Lord.
So, verse 56 says that “the strength of sin is the law”, but in Galations it says, “Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law”.
In fact let’s look at it together in Galations 3:5-14
Therefore He who supplies the Spirit to you and works miracles among you, does He do it by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith?—
just as Abraham “believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness.”
Therefore know that only those who are of faith are sons of Abraham.
And the Scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the Gentiles by faith, preached the gospel to Abraham beforehand, saying, “In you all the nations shall be blessed.”
So then those who are of faith are blessed with believing Abraham.
For as many as are of the works of the law are under the curse; for it is written, “Cursed is everyone who does not continue in all things which are written in the book of the law, to do them.”
But that no one is justified by the law in the sight of God is evident, for “the just shall live by faith.”
Yet the law is not of faith, but “the man who does them shall live by them.”
Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law, having become a curse for us (for it is written, “Cursed is everyone who hangs on a tree”),
that the blessing of Abraham might come upon the Gentiles in Christ Jesus, that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith.
Do you see here that Jesus had to become a curse for us so that the blessing of Abraham might come upon us?
So, let’s remind ourselves again of the Blessing of Abraham!
I will make you a great nation;
I will bless you
And make your name great;
And you shall be a blessing.
I will bless those who bless you,
And I will curse him who curses you;
And in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.”
Now I want to go back to Galations 3 and look at verses 26-29
For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus.
For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ.
There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus.
And if you are Christ’s, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.
Not only are we Abraham’s heirs receiving his inheritance, but we have also been redeemed from the curse of the law. All of the blessings of the law are part of our inheritance, and everything listed as a curse in the law has been turned into a blessing because of Jesus.
So, can you see why this time of year when we celebrate the birth of Jesus is such a time of Great Joy and Excitement? No wonder the angels were so filled with Joy and Amazement!
I would really like to read all of the verses in Deuteronomy, which describe all of the blessings that are ours. However, in order to include everything, we also need to read all of the curses and turn them around to blessings, because Jesus has “redeemed us from the curse of the law”.
I’m not going to read all of the verses for sake of time, but you can find them later by reading it for yourself, beginning in Deuteronomy 28. I’ve decided to list them out so we can get a picture of just how thorough our God is in His provision of Blessings for us.
Listen closely and allow Faith to rise in your heart! All of this has been provided for you!
1. God will set you on high above all the other nations of the earth (Deut 28:1-2)
2. You will be ‘blessed’ in the city (Deut 28:3)
3. You will be ‘blessed’ in the field
4. You will have perfect offspring (Deut 28:4)
5. Your crops will be ‘blessed’ (prosperity provision)
6. Your cattle will be ‘blessed’ (prosperity provision)
7. Your flocks will increase
8. Your baskets and storehouses will be full of good things (Deut 28:58)
9. You will be ‘blessed’ in all you undertake (Deut 28:68)
10. You will have complete victory over all your enemies (Deut 28:7)
11. Your land will be abundantly fertile and productive
12. You will be established as a holy people unto God (Deut 28:9)
13. You will be a witness and an example to all people on earth (vs 10)
14. All nations will be afraid of you
15. You will be prosperous in goods, in children, in stock, and in crops in all the land (vs 11)
16. The Lord will open to you all of His good treasure (vs 12)
17. The heavens will give you rain in due season in all of your land
18. The Lord will ‘bless’ the work of your hands
19. You will be prosperous enough to lend to many nations and you will ‘not’ need to borrow
20. The Lord shall make you the head and ‘not’ the tail (vs 13)
21. You shall be above only and never beneath
Now I want to read the list of curses that are mentioned. However, just a reminder that I am changing the word ‘cursed’ to ‘blessed’ because of Galations 3:13
15 ‘Curses’ changed to ‘Blessings’
1. You will be ‘blessed’ in the city (Deut 28:16)
2. You will be ‘blessed’ in the field
3. Your baskets and storehouses will be ‘blessed’ (vs 17)
4. Your children will be ‘blessed’ (vs 18)
5. Your crops will be ‘blessed’
6. Your herds will increase
7. Your flocks will increase
8. You will be ‘blessed’ when you come in (vs 19)
9. You will be ‘blessed’ when you go out
10. Jehovah will send ‘blessings’ upon you (vs 20)
11. He will stop vexation
12. He will stop rebukes
13. You will succeed in all you do
14. You will not be destroyed
15. You will not quickly perish
I don’t know if you’ve lost track yet, but we’ve only just begun.
Here are 30 Additional ‘Curses’ which have been turned into ‘blessings’
1. Pestilence cleaving unto you, or anything that brings a slow death has been removed (vs 21)
2. Death emaciation, or to grow thin, and waste away can no longer happen
3. Consumption has been changed to health and vitality (vs 22)
4. Fever has been broken (vs 22)
5. Extreme burning or inflammation has been canceled (vs 22)
6. Sword, or wars and civil strife has no effect (vs 22)
7. Inflammation or Burning is gone (vs 22)
8. Blasting or high wind must stop (vs 22)
9. Mildew is gone (vs 22)
10. Heaven is open for bountiful rain and fruitful seasons (vs 23)
11. Earth is no longer hard as iron, but is soft and workable for crops (vs 24)
12. Drought and dust will not come because the earth will be fed by rain (vs 24)
13. Destruction because of long drought will not happen again
14. Successful before your enemies (vs 25)
15. Your enemies will come out 1 way, but flee before you seven ways (vs 25)
16. Your influence goes into all kingdoms of the earth (vs 25)
17. Your bodies will not be eaten by fowls and beasts
18. You have help in driving away your enemies
19. The Botch of Egypt or the ulcer boil has been healed completely (vs 27 35)
20. Emerods, or Cancer has been erased (vs 27)
21. Persistent Scabs are gone (vs 27)
22. Itch is cancelled (vs 27)
23. New remedies for healing are discovered
24. Madness or dementia is changed to soundness of mind (vs 28)
25. Blindness is changed to perfect vision (vs 28)
26. Stupefication of heart is changed to Peace and Joy (vs 28)
27. You see clearly to lead others in their blindness
28. Full prosperity
29. Never again oppressed or ruined
30. Always someone there to save you
Did you lose count yet…? Let’s keep going…!
Here are 40 more ‘Curses’ which have been turned into ‘blessings’ by Jesus
1. Your enemy shall never take your wife (vs 30)
2. Your house can never be taken by your enemy
3. Your vineyard can never be taken by your enemy
4. Your stock will be safe before your eyes (vs 31)
5. Restoration Always in every situation
6. You will always have a man to deliver you
7. Your sons and daughters will never be given to other people as slaves (vs 32)
8. You will desire deliverance for your children and it will come
9. You will be powerful to help them
10. Your enemies will never eat your crops (vs 33)
11. You will be never crushed
12. You will be full of peace and joy when you see your own helpfulness (vs 34)
13. You will never serve other gods or idols
14. You will enjoy your sons and daughters, and they will never become slaves of others (vs 41)
15. Strangers among you will be humbled and you will be exalted (vs 43)
16. You will lend to strangers (vs 44)
17. Your enemies will serve you (vs 48)
18. Your possessions are safe from robbery
19. Nakedness is changed to fine clothes
20. Never be in need
21. Bondage to no-one
22. Preservation of your life (vs 48-51)
23. No War with foreign nations (vs 49)
24. Merciful treatment from enemies (vs 50)
25. Cannibalism is done away with (vs 53-57)
26. Famine and distress will never come (vs 53-57)
27. Men murdering close relatives will not happen to you
28. Women murdering close relatives will not happen to you (vs 56-57)
29. Great plagues of long endurance have disappeared from you (vs 58-59)
30. Sore sickness is gone immediately (vs 59)
31. All the diseases and plagues of Egypt shall leave you (vs 60)
32. Service only to the True God
34. Rest from fearful and trembling hearts
35. Eye healing
36. Sorrow of mind turned to JOY
37. No fears by day or night
38. Full assurance of life
39. No fretting or worry but constant Peace (vs 67)
40. Never again in slavery as in Egypt (vs 68)
So, be encouraged and reminded once again of the Great Grace and Favor upon you because of Jesus.
Turn your heart to God in worship and adoration of His amazing and unstoppable LOVE. He has given ALL of himself to you for your restoration, healing, and prosperity. Receive His Goodness, and allow all of the curses in your life to be changed to BLESSINGS!
God Bless you! — and Merry Christmas!