Of the many, many astonishing features of the events of the first Christmas, one of the most astounding is how few people noticed anything at all. Mary’s emergency childbirth in the stable was attended only by Joseph and the other animals. Nobody in the packed inn wanted to risk losing a bunk for the night, so Joseph probably didn’t even bother asking for help.
The chosen shepherds, working late in their favorite Bethlehem fields, were the only viewers of a heavenly light show that you’d think half the world would have seen. But even though the human audience for God the Son’s stunning entry in the flesh onto our planet was small, it doesn’t mean that not much was happening.
On the contrary. There was massive two-way traffic between earth and heaven that night, some going up and some coming down: “Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying, ‘Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests’” (Luke 2:13,14).
Peace came to earth that night. Not the ceasing of warfare or crime. Those two evils will plague us till judgment day. No, a better peace—God turning a smiling face to all believers because of his Son. And starting that night, the glory-praises for the great Incarnation will rise for all ages from the throats of people and angels.
Let me hear you say, “Glory to God!”