After seven desperate years of what Winston Churchill called “blood, toil, tears and sweat,” an announcement went out from the White House.
"I, Harry S. Truman, President of the United States of America, do hereby proclaim the cessation of hostilities of World War II, effective twelve o'clock noon, December 31, 1946."
Combat had ended earlier, but troops remained abroad to ensure peace. My father was still on a ship in the North Atlantic. My mother read Truman’s announcement and dissolved into tears. For Dad, and thousands of others, the journey home could begin.
Two thousand years ago, at the ninth hour — on the world’s darkest afternoon ― and from the agony of a Roman cross, "When Jesus had received the sour wine, he said, “It is finished,” and he bowed his head and gave up his spirit" (John 19:30). From that moment since, a message has been flowing out with great clarity and power.
I, Jesus, Lord of Lords and King of Kings, do hereby proclaim the cessation of hostilities and peace with God. To all near and far off, I say, “You can come home!”
Come home! Rejoice in God’s forgiveness, rest in His love, walk in His fellowship, die in His arms, and live with Him forever. That is truly, as the angels told the shepherd the evening he came into the world as a newborn, “good news of great joy for all people” (Luke 2:10b ). Real peace. Forever peace.
Has that message come to you? Take joy in it. Live in it. Share it with others. Help them to know that hostilities are over. They can come home. And you can, too!
Lord, thank you for bringing peace with God to me. I want to know it and live it more fully. Let me daily make you at home in my heart, knowing you have ultimately won the war against evil. Amen.
Go Deeper ― The message from the Cross is that the hostility has been broken. You are truly and fully forgiven. What would it mean in this season of your life to come closer to home with God?
Further Reading: 5 Things Jesus Didn't Say On the Cross.