“For a child will be born to us, a son will be given to us; and the government will rest on His shoulders; and His name will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace.” ~ Isaiah 9:6
Birth announcements are a momentous occasion that captures the joy and excitement that a child brings into the world. I have been a dog dad for years, and as impressive and life-changing as that experience is, nothing compares to the grand appearance of a human child entering the family. As an expecting father of my very first son, my wife and I have already done every announcement tradition possible. We’ve done Instagram posts with goofy little captions like, “The Haas family is having the first bunny” (Haas means “bunny” in German), we’ve sent out postcards with sonogram pictures and prayer requests, we’ve eaten blue cupcakes as a gender reveal, hid little plastic babies all around the house (okay, maybe you didn’t do that one), and set up a registry. All these things are done in anticipation of the arrival of my son, and I can’t wait to see him face to face. Do you recall the feeling of elation after giving a baby announcement or perhaps receiving one from a family member or friend?
One of the most studied and celebrated birth announcements found in Scripture is the prophet Isaiah’s proclamation in Isaiah 9:6-7. Here, we see impressive titles of royalty bestowed upon this child that give glory and splendor to the arrival of this baby. Now, this baby announcement is like none other, for this was a prophecy for the future fulfillment of a messianic King, a Savior for the world. We know this because this baby announcement was sent a tad early, so early that the child hadn’t even been born yet about 700 years prior to Jesus’ arrival. This passage was delivered to Israel while they were facing a ruinous condition as the threat of the Assyrian government superpower was about to destroy the northern kingdom of Israel, annex it, and take them captive. Isaiah was promising the coming of a future King that would bring deliverance.
The joys described in Isaiah 9:1–5 are grounded in the birth of this child within the Davidic line, bringing freedom from oppression. It is said that the people will “see a great light,” “multiply the nation,” “increase their gladness,” “break the yoke of their burden,” and more because a “Child will be born,” and a “Son will be given.” It would be tremendously relieving for the Israelite people to know that this coming King would have the government resting on His shoulders. After being forced to assimilate into the Assyrian Empire, they are now reinstated into a life of freedom under new rule.
Most babies are given one name to address them by; perhaps they are assigned a suffix like “junior” or “the third,” but this baby is given four distinct names as one was not sufficient to explain the identity of this child. These divine titles, only associated with God, describe who this baby is and what this infant will accomplish. Not many babies will have a resume of accomplishments before they are even born, but this child is different. The final title of this list is “Prince of Peace.” This weighty title is attributed to the foreknowledge that He will be able to negotiate, solve, diagnose, and ordain all circumstances to bring about peace. Under the coming reign of this child, there will be no more war, no more terrorism, no more brutal violence, or political turmoil. This child will usher in an era of rest as His reign is characterized as peace. Who is this Prince of Peace? It is Jesus Christ, the Son of God.
Jesus being labeled as the “Prince of Peace” means that He alone is capable, consistent, and willing enough to bring about true peace, restoration, reconciliation, and redemption in this world. Jesus can not only bring you peace in your relationship between you and God but grant you real peace in your relationship with others. The peace that Jesus offers is better than “world peace,” as we might see it, because Jesus’ peace eternally penetrates and sustains the heart and environment that it indwells. Even in this unholy, unpeaceful world with broken political systems, distorted worldviews, and depraved ideologies, we can still experience Jesus’ real, long-lasting peace. Jesus’ peace can saturate our personal lives, our marriages, our families, our churches, our schools, our communities, and our world if we trust in Him. If it is true that Jesus is the “Prince of Peace,” that means that no matter the turmoil and strife we may find ourselves in, we can still find rest, stability, security, and peace in Him. These Baby announcement titles found in Isaiah 9 unveil the identity of Jesus but also describe the wonderous benefits that come from knowing and trusting in Him, for in Him there will be no end to His government or to His peace.
Questions for Thought
- Where in your life are you desperately needing divine peace, rest, stability, or security?
- What would your life look like if your peace was secured in the Prince of Peace?
Dear God, we thank You for Your son Jesus’ fulfillment of this prophecy that He, being a small child, would come to be our messianic Savior. Daily, we encounter graphic reminders of the pervasive depravity, brokenness, and sin that is found in this world. We recognize that this world desperately needs peace that only comes through your son, Jesus. As Isaiah states, Jesus is “The Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, and the Prince of Peace.” We trust in that reality today. May we let go of needless pain in our lives and immerse ourselves in the peace that only You can offer. Let us tangibly experience Your peace in our lives and see it in our world today.
In Jesus’ name, we pray, Amen.
Read Isaiah 9:6-7. Reflect on the powerful titles given to the prophesied child and the promises of deliverance and peace for God’s people. Just as this divine birth announcement brought hope to a troubled nation, ponder how the arrival of Jesus, the “Prince of Peace,” can bring lasting peace to your life and the world.
Associate Minister to Junior High Students
Jared graduated with a Bachelor of Youth Ministry and Biblical Studies, then became a Junior High Youth Pastor at the largest Nondenominational International English-speaking church in Hong Kong. Jared served there for five years as a cross-cultural missionary and met his wife, Amanda. Now, Jared is currently enrolled at Dallas Theological Seminary, pursuing his Master’s in Apologetics and Evangelism. He and Amanda are expecting their first son.