Luke 2:13 ‘And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, 14 Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.’
John 14:27 Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.’
Peace? Goodwill? How can there be ‘peace’ in a world torn with debate, conflict,
Joh 15:17 These things I command you, that ye love one another.
destruction and global unrest? Where is the ‘good will towards men’ in a world populated by many whose hearts foster ill-will towards others? If ‘Peace on Earth – Good Will Towards Men’ exists – where does it live? I contend such pure intention exists in the Father, Son (Prince of Peace), and Holy Spirit who indwells the hearts of believers. And I see His hand continually through a global multitude whose hearts selflessly and compassionately serve their fellow-man.
Too many to mention are the faith-based/corporate/government/non-government/private/non-profit agencies who are incredibly active in offering humanitarian services and provision to those who are in need. As a volunteer with a national non-profit who via a Congressional Charter and with a broad base of partners/donors – provides emergency disaster relief, I am in awe at having realized through first hand experience that God’s ‘Peace on Earth – Good Will Towards Men’ is alive and well!!!! In the past my focus was on the problems of my county, state and world. But now I am seeing a thing I once believed was lost – pure unadulterated humanitarianism – of the God kind !
In my county in southern America, there are two hundred and fifty churches, twenty-six Fire Departments (twenty-four Volunteer/two paid City
Lu 6:35 But love ye your enemies, and do good, and lend, hoping for nothing again; and your reward shall be great, and ye shall be the children of the Highest: for he is kind unto the unthankful and to the evil.
departments), seventeen incorporated municipalities and a host of
non-profit/government/non-government agencies all who take part in humanitarianism straight from the loving heart of God. Before following my heart to early retirement from the teaching profession in search of a God-compelled place, I had a general awareness of the goodness of the churches and agencies active in my narrow perspective window. And for the most part I just complained about the state of the world and the evil there. But since I’ve found the ‘secret-garden’ of humanitarianism so to speak, I observe the love of God saturating and flowing through agencies and touching hearts and lives who need uplifted and encouraged.
America practices humanitarianism via the National Response Framework and National Incident Command Management System (NIMS). The National Response Framework (NRF) is a guide to how the Nation conducts all-hazard response for managing incidents that range from the serious but purely local to large-scale terrorist attacks or catastrophic natural disasters. The companion NIMS ‘provides a consistent, nationwide template to enable Federal, State, Tribal, and local governments, the private sector, and non-government organizations (NGOs) to work together to prepare for, prevent, respond to, recover from, and mitigate the effects of incidents regardless of cause, size, location, or complexity.’ And the beautiful idea of loving, helping, restoring, sheltering and feeding people in need comes from a heart higher and purer than the human heart. Such high Humanitarianism comes straight from the kind, gentle and merciful heart of God!!!! And we are so steeped in habits of complaining and bemoaning that we do not see the loving Hand constantly stretched forth to touch those who are hurting. And we do not see that churches, businesses, non-profits, non-government, private and yes – governments are gifts from the Father to his creation !!
Romans 13:1 Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God. 3For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to the evil. Wilt thou then not be afraid of the power? do that which is good, and thou shalt have praise of the same: 4For he is the minister of God to thee for good. But if thou do that which is evil, be afraid; for he beareth not the sword in vain: for he is the minister of God, a revenger to execute wrath upon him that doeth evil. 5 Wherefore ye must needs be subject, not only for wrath, but also for conscience sake.
And, yes, there are tares who plant themselves next to the wheat of God’s earthly government with intent to hinder and destroy. The Kingdom of God in the world is described in the following verse: John 17:23 I in them, and thou in
Prince of Peace
me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that thou hast sent me, and hast loved them, as thou hast loved me.’ But alongside the Kingdom of God sits Mystery Babylon – the fulness of fleshly lust and greed. But the bad intent does not void God’s gift of rulers and the related benevolent functions and protections provided to the people.
Matthew 7:12 Therefore all things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them: for this is the law and the prophets.
Yet the gentle heart of God remains the victor as proven by Hebrews chapters eleven and twelve which names the horrors the enemy perpetuates against God’s people – by God’s permission. But the kicker is that as satan steals the earthly breath from a child of God, the soul returns to the Father in a place of peace, safety, light, and glory – Eden restored!!! Hebrews 11:37 They were stoned, they were sawn asunder, were tempted, were slain with the sword: they wandered about in sheepskins and goatskins; being destitute, afflicted, tormented; 38 (Of whom the world was not worthy:) they wandered in deserts, and in mountains, and in dens and caves of the earth.’ ‘Of whom the world was not worthy’ – I totally love that while it appears evil is the victor that actually God the Father is gathering them back to Himself because the ‘world was not worthy’ of their presence any longer. Wow!!!! Awesome!!!
And we cannot lose sight of the fact that God’s strong hand remains on our world even though He is loosening the restraints on evil in this generation – for His perfect purposes! I thank God that He has directed me to a place of wisdom – to a place of recognizing that it is His hand and heart in all the humanitarian efforts and acts around the world though they are performed by human hearts, feet, hands, and voices under His direction.
We must give our Father credit due for His organizations made up of servants, both paid and volunteer, who are touching the hurting and hopeless. Thank You, God, for organizations such as CAN (Coordinated Assistance Network) made up of AIRS (Alliance of Information & Referral Systems, American Red Cross, Catholic Charities U.S.A, Lutheran Disaster Response, (VOAD) National Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster, The Salvation Army, Southern Baptist
For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.John 3:16
Conventions Disaster Relief, United Way and (UMCOR) United Methodist Committee on Relief. And along with these CAN agencies, other agencies operate under the National Mass Care Strategy such as FEMA, NEMA (National Emergency Management Association), Crisis Common, Save the Children, Medical Reserve Corp, (NACo) National Organization of Counties (represents county governments in the U.S.), National Disability Rights Network, Adventist Community Service, Business Civic, Leadership Center (U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation), (iAEM) International Association of Emergency Managers (non-profit educational organization dedicated to promoting the goals of saving lives and protecting property during emergencies and disasters), and Feeding America . Wow!!! Wow!!! I believe that if it were possible to document the humanitarian deeds of all the faith-based, government/non-government/private/corporate/non-profit agencies and groups who serve humanity around the world – that I would come to the end of my life before I could name them all. How dare I complain about worldly things in light of such heavenly abundance of grace, love, mercy, kindness, joy, restoration, caring and giving. How dare I complain when trillions upon trillions of benevolent
donor dollars and trillions upon trillions of both paid/volunteer service hours are given in humanitarianism service globally. How dare I not confess that such Humanitarianism is the result of the Heavenly Father’s loving touch on the earth!! Instead of bemoaning and complaining I will be found eternally praising the Father for the ‘Peace on Earth – Good Will Towards Men’ which resounds today as surely as when first spoken by the heavenly host. And many insist that God as Righteous judge destroys His enemies in vengeful rebuke. But I insist the loving Father’s enemies self-destruct as they come against/reject His Power which is Truth/Life (the Word of God) and, thus, choose their eternal damnation-Death.
The warrior God who rides the white horse of Revelations 19 is misleading for those who do not know the gentle heart of the Creator. 11. And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and he that sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he doth judge and make war. 12 His eyes were as a flame of fire, and on his head were many crowns; and he had a name written, that no man knew, but he himself. 13 And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood: and his name is called The Word of God.’ But the
Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God. Matt. 5:9
fearless and thunderous strength of the white horse assures deliverance in battle. His many crowns are His infinite authority over all enemies. His blood-soaked vesture is dripping with His own blood poured out for atonement of sin. And his name, The Word of God, is Truth. Truth is the final Judge. Man’s decisions against Truth is what damns the soul. Yet Truth remains pure, gentle, kind, merciful and His Love is eternal!
And the following seems to contradict ‘Peace on Earth’- Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword. Matt 10:34′. But the Sword is God (John 1.1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God‘). But God is the final Word on righteousness, goodness, love, and compassion. Those who hate God and reject His redemption bought by His own soul – knowingly damn themselves. They and their evil father are the opponents of Life. The gentle Heavenly Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are present in the world today granting/perpetuating Peace on Earth and Good Will Towards Men.