But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid; for see- I am bringing you good news of great joy for all the people….” Luke 2:10 NRSV
This part of the story can be interpreted in this way: “Hey, don’t worry, I’m not hear to kill you or to condemn you for all time, I am hear to tell you some exciting stuff that is not just for you but for everyone!” The angel is God’s messenger – bringing the good news. Now good news in ancient times was usually about the outcome of a battle or what the gods had done. Here the good news is about what God has done – given God’s people and all people the Messiah, the Savior.
But what I find particularly interesting is that the angels don’t appear to everyone. They appear to the shepherds. But the news is for everyone. Right away it is evident that this is not something they are going to be able to keep to themselves. This isn’t a story that keeps them focused inward. This isn’t a personal message for self-improvement. This is a report to be shared with the whole community. Yes, it begins with the shepherds but it is meant to be shared with everyone.
God, we keep too much about You to ourselves. We don’t want to bother or insult anyone or be rejected. But the angel didn’t tell the shepherds that this birth was just for them but for all people. May we finally hear the angel’s message. Amen.
Copyright 2008 Amelia G. Sims