“Behold, at that time I will deal
with all your oppressors.
And I will save the lame
and gather the outcast,
and I will change their shame into praise
and renown in all the earth.
20 At that time I will bring you in,
at the time when I gather you together; for I will make you renowned and praised
among all the peoples of the earth,
when I restore your fortunes
before your eyes,” says the Lord.” (Zephaniah 3:19-20, ESV).
As we approach the feast of Christmas the message of Zephaniah reminds us that the Messiah, Jesus, is the King of Peace. He came to free people from the oppression of sin and Satan and to bring peace to the earth, peace with God and peace among all mankind. Perhaps this is why the violence of terrorism is so very painful and seems more tragic when it occurs around holiday time. It disrupts holiday events. And it should. It should make us all more mindful of our need for unity among all peoples, a unity that can exist only in and through Christ Jesus.
The idea that true peace and unity in Christ alone is an unpopular message in our politically correct world. The media, the government and various activist groups would have us believe that all religions are equal and that all worship the same God or “god force”. They would also have us believe that basically all religions desire freedom and peace for all people, aside from, of course, the violent agenda of radical sects and individuals. Yet the words of the Lord spoken through the prophet Zephaniah tell us that it is the Lord God Almighty who alone can and will break the yoke of oppression and restore His people into right relationship with Himself. This is because only Jesus can restore us to the perfection and bliss of Eden by means of His sacrifice on the altar of the cross. He is the only God who loves His people so much that He came down to be one of us, to be our perfect offering for sin. There is none like Him!