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Nativity of Jesus



 Angelic Announcement to the Shepherds










Dec of 5 BC







Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.  Luke 2:14



  1. Glory

  2. Peace

  3. Goodwill

Lectionary Years A, B, & C:  Holy Name of Jesus and Mary Mother of God, Jan. 1.



Quotes & Notes on:    Matthew 1:25

  • John Wesley's Notes:
    The shouts of the multitude are generally broken into short sentences. This rejoicing acclamation strongly represents the piety and benevolence of these heavenly spirits: as if they had said, Glory be to God in the highest heavens: let all the angelic legions resound his praises. For with the Redeemer's birth, peace, and all kind of happiness, come down to dwell on earth: yea, the overflowings of Divine good will and favour are now exercised toward men.

  • Treasury of Scripture Knowledge:
    * Glory. Lu 19:38; Ps 69:34; 85:9-12; 96:11-13; Isa 44:23; 49:13; Joh 17:4 Eph 1:6; 3:20,21; Php 2:11; Re 5:13
    * and. Lu 1:79; Isa 9:6; 57:19; Jer 23:5,6; Mic 5:5; Zec 6:12,13; Joh 14:27 Ac 10:36; Ro 5:1; 2Co 5:18-20; Eph 2:14-18; Col 1:20; Heb 13:20,21
    * good. Joh 3:16; Eph 2:4,7; 2Th 2:16; Tit 3:4-7; 1Jo 4:9,10

  • Adam Clarke's Commentary:
     Glory to God in the highest] The design of God, in the incarnation, was to manifest the hidden glories of his nature, and to reconcile men to each other and to himself. The angels therefore declare that this incarnation shall manifest and promote the glory of God, not only in the highest heavens, among the highest orders of beings, but in the highest and most exalted degrees. For in this astonishing display of God's mercy, attributes of the Divine nature which had not been and could not be known in any other way should be now exhibited in the fulness of their glory, that even the angels should have fresh objects to contemplate, and new glories to exult in. These things the angels desire to look into, 1Pe 1:12, and they desire it because they feel they are thus interested in it. The incarnation of Jesus Christ is an infinite and eternal benefit. Heaven and earth both partake of the fruits of it, and through it angels and men become one family, Eph 3:15.

    Peace, good will toward men.] Men are in a state of hostility with Heaven and with each other. The carnal mind is enmity against God. He who sins wars against his Maker; and

    "Foe to God was ne'er true friend to man."

    When men become reconciled to God, through the death of his Son, they love one another. They have peace with God; peace in their own consciences; and peace with their neighbours: good will dwells among them, speaks in them, and works by them. Well might this state of salvation be represented under the notion of the kingdom of God, a counterpart of eternal felicity.

  • Family Bible Notes:
    On earth peace; as the result of the Saviour's advent. All who receive him have peace with God and the spirit of peace towards man; and the prevalence of his gospel will bring peace to the world. Good will toward men; kindness, compassion, and grace, manifested in the gift of a Saviour.

  • 1599 Geneva Bible Notes:
    God's ready, good, infinite, and gracious favour towards men.

  • People's New Testament Commentary:
      The life of the Lord Jesus Christ upon the earth was the working out and development of the song of the angels. It was "Glory to God" illustrated in his consecration and death. It was "peace" in all the utterances of his lips; peace in his Gospel. It was "good will toward man"; for every thought, word and act of that blessed life was the translation of God's infinite love into forms visible to the mortal eyes that saw him.

  • Robertson's Word Pictures:
       Among men in whom he is well pleased (en anthrôpois eudokias). The Textus Receptus (Authorized Version also has eudokia, but the genitive eudokias is undoubtedly correct, supported by the oldest and best uncials. (Aleph, A B D W). C has a lacuna here. Plummer justly notes how in this angelic hymn Glory and Peace correspond, in the highest and on earth, to God and among men of goodwill. It would be possible to connect "on earth" with "the highest" and also to have a triple division. There has been much objection raised to the genitive eudokias, the correct text. But it makes perfectly good sense and better sense. As a matter of fact real peace on earth exists only among those who are the subjects of God's goodwill, who are characterized by goodwill toward God and man. This word eudokia we have already had in Mt 11:26. It does not occur in the ancient Greek. The word is confined to Jewish and Christian writings, though the papyri furnish instances of eudokęsis. Wycliff has it "to men of goodwill."

  • Albert Barnes' Commentary:
     Glory to God. Praise be to God, or honour be to God. That is, the praise of redeeming man is due to God. The plan of redemption will bring glory to God, and is designed to express his glory. This it does by evincing his love to men, his mercy, his condescension, and his regard to the honour of his law and the stability of his own government. It is the highest expression of his love and mercy. Nowhere, so far as we can see, could his glory be more strikingly exhibited than in giving his only-begotten Son to die for men.

    In the highest. This is capable of several meanings:

    1st. In the highest strains, or in the highest possible manner.

    2nd. Among the highest--that is, among the angels of God; indicating that they felt a deep interest in this work, and were called on to praise God for the redemption of man.

    3rd. In the highest heavens --indicating that the praise of redemption should not be confined to the earth, but should spread throughout the universe.

    4th. The words "God in the highest" may be equivalent to the most high God, and be the same as saying, "Let the most high God be praised for his love and mercy to men." Which of these meanings is the true one it is difficult to determine; but in this they all agree, that high praise is to be given to God for his love in redeeming men. O that not only angels, but men, would join universally in this song of praise!

    On earth peace {d}. That is, the gospel will bring peace. The Saviour was predicted as the Prince of peace, Isa 9:6. The world is at war with God; sinners are at enmity against their Maker and against each other. There is no peace to the wicked. But Jesus came to make peace; and this he did,

    1st. By reconciling the world to God by his atonement.

    2nd. By bringing the sinner to a state of peace with his Maker; inducing him to lay down the weapons of rebellion and to submit his soul to God, thus giving him the peace which passeth all understanding.

    3rd. By diffusing in the heart universal good-will to men--disposing men to lay aside their differences, to love one another, to seek each other's welfare, and to banish envy, malice, pride, lust, passion, and covetousness --in all ages the most fruitful causes of difference among men. And,

    4th. By diffusing the principles of universal peace among nations. If the gospel of Jesus should universally prevail, there would be an end of war. In the days of the millennium there will be universal peace; all the causes of war will have ceased; men will love each other and do justly; all nations will be brought under the influence of the gospel. O how should each one toil and pray that the great object of the gospel should be universally accomplished, and the world be filled with peace!

    Good will toward men. The gift of the Saviour is an expression of good-will or love to men, and therefore God is to be praised. The work of redemption is uniformly represented as the fruit of the love of God, Joh 3:16; Eph 5:2; 1Jo 4:10; Re 1:5. No words can express the greatness of that love. It can only be measured by the misery, helplessness, and danger of man; by the extent of his sufferings here and in the world of woe if he had not been saved; by the condescension, sufferings, and death of Jesus; and by the eternal honour and happiness to which he will raise his people. All these are beyond our full comprehension. Yet how little does man feel it! and how many turn away from the highest love of God, and treat the expression of that love with contempt! Surely, if God so loved us first, we ought also to love him, 1Jo 4:19.

    {d} Isa 57:19

  • Jamieson-Faussett Brown:
      Glory, &c.--brief but transporting hymn--not only in articulate human speech, for our benefit, but in tunable measure, in the form of a Hebrew parallelism of two complete clauses, and a third one only amplifying the second, and so without a connecting "and." The "glory to God," which the new-born "Saviour" was to bring, is the first note of this sublime hymn: to this answers, in the second clause, the "peace on earth," of which He was to be "the Prince" (Isa 9:6) --probably sung responsively by the celestial choir; while quickly follows the glad echo of this note, probably by a third detachment of the angelic choristers--"good will to men." "They say not, glory to God in heaven, where angels are, but, using a rare expression, "in the highest [heavens]," whither angels aspire not," (Heb 1:3,4) [BENGEL]. "Peace" with God is the grand necessity of a fallen world. To bring in this, and all other peace in its train, was the prime errand of the Saviour to this earth, and, along with it, Heaven's whole "good will to men"--the divine complacency on a new footing--descends to rest upon men, as upon the Son Himself, in whom God is "well-pleased." (Mt 3:17, the same word as here.)

  • Spurgeon Commentary:
    (No comment on this verse)

  • William Burkitt's Notes:
    (No comment on this verse)

  • Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary:
    (No comment on this verse)

  • The Fourfold Gospel:
      God in the highest. In the highest heavens (Job 16:19; Ps 148:1).

    And on earth peace among men. The angels invoke blessing on God and peace upon man. Peace between God and man, and ultimately peace between man and man.

    In whom he is well pleased. The love of God is shed abroad upon all, even the vilest of sinners (Ro 5:8; 1Ti 1:15); but his peace comes upon those who have accepted his Son, and in whom he is therefore especially well pleased (Ro 9:11). Peace is the unfailing apostolic salutation toward Christians (Ro 1:7; 1Co 1:3; 2Co 1:2, etc.), and is attainable in the highest degree by Christians only (Joh 14:27; 16:33; Col 3:15; Php 4:7).



Updated:   Wednesday, March 06, 2013 at 03:51 AM



Status of Gospel Harmony Project

  • Preparing study notes on a weekly basis for the current 6 pm Sunday Eve. Bible Study at Mt. Carmel UMC

  • Section groupings are complete until linking to individual event pages is finished

  • Setting up event pages and linking the section groupings to them

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