Recently we in Australia celebrated the end of the war in the pacific.
Humanly speaking, effectively that came about because:
- Atomic bombs dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki
- Pressure on west front as Russia freed from engagement in Europe came to the aid of China
In celebrations of peace we remember wild scenes of unrestrained joy in the streets
- A man dancing down the main street of Sydney
- A Sailor kissing a nurse he did not know.
Our text has all these ingredients… what is described in it as to the end of hostilities and the unleashing of celebration leaves these human celebrations after WWII looking to be of no consequence.
- THE END OF HOSTILITIES
- THE WORD UPON WHICH WE CAN COUNT
- INCREDIBLE PEACE!
Readings reproduced on this page:
The Holy Bible: New International Version. 1996, 1984. Grand Rapids: Zondervan
Luke 15:11–32 (NIV84)
11Jesus continued: “There was a man who had two sons.
12The younger one said to his father, ‘Father, give me my share of the estate.’ So he divided his property between them.
13“Not long after that, the younger son got together all he had, set off for a distant country and there squandered his wealth in wild living.
14After he had spent everything, there was a severe famine in that whole country, and he began to be in need.
15So he went and hired himself out to a citizen of that country, who sent him to his fields to feed pigs.
16He longed to fill his stomach with the pods that the pigs were eating, but no one gave him anything.
17“When he came to his senses, he said, ‘How many of my father’s hired men have food to spare, and here I am starving to death!
18I will set out and go back to my father and say to him: Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you.
19I am no longer worthy to be called your son; make me like one of your hired men.’
20So he got up and went to his father. “But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and was filled with compassion for him; he ran to his son, threw his arms around him and kissed him.
21“The son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son.’
22“But the father said to his servants, ‘Quick! Bring the best robe and put it on him. Put a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet.
23Bring the fattened calf and kill it. Let’s have a feast and celebrate.
24For this son of mine was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.’ So they began to celebrate.
25“Meanwhile, the older son was in the field. When he came near the house, he heard music and dancing.
26So he called one of the servants and asked him what was going on.
27‘Your brother has come,’ he replied, ‘and your father has killed the fattened calf because he has him back safe and sound.’
28“The older brother became angry and refused to go in. So his father went out and pleaded with him.
29But he answered his father, ‘Look! All these years I’ve been slaving for you and never disobeyed your orders. Yet you never gave me even a young goat so I could celebrate with my friends.
30But when this son of yours who has squandered your property with prostitutes comes home, you kill the fattened calf for him!’
31“ ‘My son,’ the father said, ‘you are always with me, and everything I have is yours.
32But we had to celebrate and be glad, because this brother of yours was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.’ ”
Isaiah 55:8–13 (NIV84)
8“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the Lord.
9“As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.
10As the rain and the snow come down from heaven, and do not return to it without watering the earth and making it bud and flourish, so that it yields seed for the sower and bread for the eater,
11so is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it.
12You will go out in joy and be led forth in peace; the mountains and hills will burst into song before you, and all the trees of the field will clap their hands.
13Instead of the thornbush will grow the pine tree, and instead of briers the myrtle will grow. This will be for the Lord’s renown, for an everlasting sign, which will not be destroyed.”