Verse 10 But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people.
Yesterday we dealt with the fact that true joy comes from true repentance. Today we look at one of the groups we talked about on day one that expressed true joy because of their true knowledge of who Jesus is.
The shepherds were as lowly a human as could be found in the day of which Jesus was born. These men were not thought well of and not thought of much. These were not the high ranking officials that were used to birth announcements from royals. They had a smelly job that had them working late in the evening. Yet these are the very men that God chose to hear the first birth announcement of His precious Son.
Not only did God choose to announce the birth to these shepherds but He chose to do it in grand fashion! Let’s set the stage a moment. We find our shepherds watching over their sheep at night. Suddenly there is an angel standing among them and the glory of the Lord radiating about them. Now we know that the glory of the Lord is not just a soft glowing light. This was a bright light shining in a way that they couldn’t deny. Not surprisingly they were instantly afraid. But the angel tells them not to be afraid. Why? Because the message that was being brought was to bring them joy.
This joy was not just for the shepherds. The angel said that it was news that would cause great joy for all people. If it was for all people why were the only ones being told about it the people that no one liked? The shepherds didn’t have time to think about that because as soon as the angel finished with the message that the Messiah had been born nearby, a great multitude of heavenly beings joined the men and started praising God.
The news of this birth of the Messiah isn’t just for those in high places in society. These shepherds, who lived a life out of the limelight were now standing in the radiance of the glory of the Lord. From the moment they heard the message there must have been joy building in them. The Messiah had been long-awaited by all the people. Even in their position, the shepherds knew what this birth meant. And that should bring joy to anyone!
Making It Personal
What about the birth of Jesus brings you joy? Have you ever felt like you weren’t good enough for God? Does it bring you joy to know that God’s good news is for everyone?
Making It Personal Kids
What do you think the shepherds thought when the angel showed up? Do you think the shepherds were excited to hear about the Baby? Do you get excited to hear about Jesus?
Father, thank You for sending Your Son and for wanting everyone to know about Him. Give us excitement when we hear about His coming – both His first and second coming. In Jesus’ name, amen.