Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying,
‘Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace to those on whom his favour rests.’
When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, ‘Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.’
It was an invasion of the skies. How big was this great company of the heavenly host? How many turned up? You might re-phrase the question by asking how many angels gave that event a miss. Wouldn’t you turn up too, to share in the worship?
Heaven has come to earth, and the Word of God, he whom the angels worshipped, has become a soft, damp human, relying on Mary to feed and nurture him. Angels were amazed at what has happened, and they sang their songs of praise across the night sky. How many? Enough to fill the sky and blot out the moon and stars but shining more brightly than the noonday sun.
The sight is glorious, but the glory goes to Father God, for what has happened tonight is the appearance of God Incarnate on earth, for nine months a secret known only by the close family of Joseph. Glory to God! Glory to God! Glory to God!
The angels know that this is a step in the working out of God’s purposes, which will culminate in the recreation of earth to be a place where all will live in peace. For this moment and this age, let there be peace on this earth, demonstrated through people of peace.
Angels praise God from the heights, and lowly shepherds get to see and hear, and they are the first to visit the Lord Jesus.
Who will you share this good news with?
Father God, thank you for sending your Son Jesus to this world. He came with angels announcing his birth, and he will return with his angels. For now I pray that you will keep me mindful of how you use angels today, and enable me to sense the presence of angels in my church’s worship. Amen.