Posted by: dhkrause | December 8, 2019

Immanuel, God With Us

Isaiah 7_14 (3)

God commands His people, “Be holy for I am holy”, and to love one another as He loves us. Through faith in Jesus Christ, we are upheld by His power to fulfill these commands.  (1 John 4:11, 1 Peter 1:5, 15.)

The gospel of Matthew describes how Jesus Christ in his life and ministry fulfilled many prophecies.  The first is that the Savior would be born of a virgin, and one of his names would be Immanuel, which is translated, “God with us.”  (Hebrew: Immanu “with us” + El “God”.)  Jesus’ actual name in Hebrew is Yeshua, which means “salvation” – very fitting, for He came to save His people from their sins.  Jesus Christ is both “God with us” and our Savior who redeems and transforms our lives.  All of these promises are found in the first chapter of Matthew, where an angel of the Lord comes to Joseph in a dream:

Matthew 1 (NKJV)
Christ Born of Mary
18 Now the birth of Jesus Christ was as follows: After His mother Mary was betrothed to Joseph, before they came together, she was found with child of the Holy Spirit. 19 Then Joseph her husband, being a just man, and not wanting to make her a public example, was minded to put her away secretly. 20 But while he thought about these things, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, “Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take to you Mary your wife, for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit. 21And she will bring forth a Son, and you shall call His name Jesus [Yeshua], for He will save His people from their sins.

22 So all this was done that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the Lord through the prophet, saying: 23 “Behold, the virgin shall be with child, and bear a Son, and they shall call His name Immanuel,” which is translated, “God with us.”

24 Then Joseph, being aroused from sleep, did as the angel of the Lord commanded him and took to him his wife, 25 and did not know her till she had brought forth her firstborn Son. And he called His name Jesus.

Isaiah 9_6-7 (2)

The reference to the name, “Immanuel”, is from Isaiah 7:14, “ Therefore the Lord Himself will give you a sign: Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a Son, and shall call His name Immanuel.”  Isaiah 9 gives additional prophecies about the coming Savior (some of which will be fulfilled in His second coming):

Isaiah 9 (NKJV)
For unto us a Child is born,
Unto us a Son is given;
And the government will be upon His shoulder.
And His name will be called
Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
Of the increase of His government and peace
There will be no end,
Upon the throne of David and over His kingdom,
To order it and establish it with judgment and justice
From that time forward, even forever.
The zeal of the Lord of hosts will perform this.

In Luke 1, we read how Mary also received a very special visit from an angel of the Lord, while she was wide awake, telling her about the son to whom she would give birth while still a virgin.  Mary received this amazing word by faith: “I am the Lord’s servant,” Mary answered. “May your word to me be fulfilled.” (Luke 1:38)

Luke 1_31

Luke 1 (NKJV)
The Birth of Jesus Foretold
26 In the sixth month of Elizabeth’s pregnancy, God sent the angel Gabriel to Nazareth, a town in Galilee, 27 to a virgin pledged to be married to a man named Joseph, a descendant of David. The virgin’s name was Mary. 28 The angel went to her and said, “Greetings, you who are highly favored! The Lord is with you.”

29 Mary was greatly troubled at his words and wondered what kind of greeting this might be. 30 But the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary; you have found favor with God. 31 You will conceive and give birth to a son, and you are to call him Jesus. 32 He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his father David, 33 and he will reign over Jacob’s descendants forever; his kingdom will never end.”

34 “How will this be,” Mary asked the angel, “since I am a virgin?”

35 The angel answered, “The Holy Spirit will come on you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the holy one to be born will be called the Son of God. 36 Even Elizabeth your relative is going to have a child in her old age, and she who was said to be unable to conceive is in her sixth month. 37 For no word from God will ever fail.”

38 “I am the Lord’s servant,” Mary answered. “May your word to me be fulfilled.” Then the angel left her.

Hark the herald angels sing

Charles Wesley’s hymn, “Hark! the Herald Angels Sing” captures these wonderful truths about the incarnation of the Son of God:

Hark! the Herald Angels Sing

  1. Hark! the herald angels sing,
    “Glory to the newborn King;
    Peace on earth, and mercy mild;
    God and sinners reconciled.”
    Joyful, all ye nations, rise,
    Join the triumph of the skies;
    With th’angelic hosts proclaim,
    “Christ is born in Bethlehem.”

     2. Christ, by highest heav’n adored,
         Christ, the everlasting Lord:
         Late in time behold Him come,
         Offspring of a virgin’s womb.
         Veiled in flesh the Godhead see,
         Hail th’incarnate Deity!
         Pleased as man with men to appear,
         Jesus our Immanuel here.

John 3:16 describes God’s incomparable gift of love in sending His own Son, that we might have eternal life through faith in Him: “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.”  John writes about the  call of God upon our lives to know His love, and to love as He loves, in 1 John 4:

1 John 4 (NKJV)
In this the love of God was manifested toward us, that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through Him. 10 In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins. 11 Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.

1 John 4_11 (2)

God commands us as followers of Jesus to be holy in all our conduct.  We are upheld by His power to win that victory, as described in 1 Peter 1:

1 Peter 1 (NKJV)
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His abundant mercy has begotten us again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance incorruptible and undefiled and that does not fade away, reserved in heaven for you, who are kept by the power of God through faith for salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.

13 Therefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and rest your hope fully upon the grace that is to be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ; 14 as obedient children, not conforming yourselves to the former lusts, as in your ignorance; 15 but as He who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, 16 because it is written, “Be holy, for I am holy.”

David Krause, dhkrause@neteze.com, https://compellinglove.net/, 12/7/2019

Photo credits:
(1) https://www.returntotheword.com/Isaiah-714–Fulfilled-In-Christ  *
(2) https://slideplayer.com/slide/4269906/
(3) https://genesisone.wordpress.com/tag/prophecy/  *
(4) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uShO0BgBZXo
(5) https://medium.com/@keithmcgivern/beloved-if-god-so-loved-us-we-ought-also-to-love-one-another-1-john-4-11-dced66bb9cde  *

* Includes excellent teaching.

 


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