A new King is born! God sends a delegation of angles to tell the world about the birth of Jesus, but they are not sent to Kings or rulers, nor to the religious elite, but to shepherds in a field. Yet another example of God’s Kingdom turning the expectations of the world and the institutions of power on their heads! In 1 Sam 16 when Samuel came to Jesse’s house to anoint one of his son’s as King, David, as the youngest, was out tending the sheep. It was not a glamourous job, left for the lowliest in the family, and at times was a dangerous one as you fought back other animals who would seek to harm the sheep. It was not something those with social standing or money would do themselves. The shepherds are another example of lowly and humble servants that God used for his purposes.
To these humble shepherds the angel gave an incredible message. The angel’s declaration was news of joy and therefore no need to fear. The news the angel was bringing was not just news for the Jewish people but for “all people” (v10). This news is about the birth of a baby and the angel uses four words to describe this child. Firstly, he is a baby, a real human of flesh and blood, born “to you”. Secondly, he is the saviour, the one who will deliver the people. Thirdly, he is the Messiah, the anointed one, the one they have been waiting for and about whom God had made promises. Finally, he is the Lord, denoting someone with power and ownership. It is clear this is no ordinary baby. This declaration summarises so much about Jesus, his identity and his role in the world and in line with so much of God’s Kingdom ways, this grand revelation is given to lowly shepherds.
Today disciples of Jesus have a similar message to declare. About Jesus, a baby who became a man, who took on human form, who has saved us from sin and death, in line with the promises given to Israel thousands of years ago, and who now rules as Lord. It is an incredible message that we now humbly hold, even as cracked jars of clay (2 Cor 4), to share with the world. Who could you share this message with today? Spend some time praying for boldness and opportunities as you seek to share the wonderful news of Jesus with the world today.