The angels knew Jesus from the moment they were created, before there was an earth. They exist outside of time and space and yet they entered into our experience to say “Do not be afraid,” because they know that everything is gonna be all right.
In the experience of the wise men, we witness what the rest of the world could have done in response to Christ’s arrival. They didn’t know the stories or the promises of the Old Testament, and yet they could still receive the incredible grace of God with us, in the flesh. Here is the good news of Christmas: it is the message to the whole world that everything is gonna be all right.
Christmas is the reverse of our normal human patterns. Usually the parents are convincing the newborn child crying: “Hush, hush, it’s going to be okay.” This time, it is the little child who is crying to the world, proclaiming that in the end, everything is gonna be all right.
Zechariah and Elizabeth know the promise of the Old Testament as deeply as any childhood bedtime story. Yet when God’s promise was revealed to them in a very personal way, they each responded differently. They knew the promise of God, that everything is gonna be all right, yet it took a real-life experience of God’s presence for them to take hold of it for themselves.
The shepherds, apart from Mary and Joseph, have the best seats in the house to witness the arrival of Christ. How incredible must it have been to witness Christmas like they did! The truth is, this is the scriptural legacy we are invited to follow in our own lives. is We are called to be witnesses to Christmas and to then tell the story.