December 24, 2009

Immanuel - God with us

Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel. Isaiah 7:14, KJV.

Immanuel - Hebrew ‘God with us’ - עמנואל ‛immânû'êl - from אל 'ĕl, "God," and עמנוּ ‛ımmânû, "with us." Albert Barnes' Notes on the Bible.

And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth. John 1:14, KJV.

Greek definitions of the following words:
  • dwelt - skēnoō (skay-no'-o), to tent or encamp.
  • among - en, a primary preposition denoting (fixed) position (in place, time or state).
  • us - hēmin (hay-meen'), to (or for, with, by) us.
Matthew Henry's Commentary

The Messiah shall be introduced on a glorious errand, wrapped up in his glorious name: They shall call his name Immanuel - God with us, God in our nature, God at peace with us, in covenant with us. This was fulfilled in their calling him Jesus - a Saviour (Matthew 1:21-25), for, if he had not been Immanuel - God with us, he could not have been Jesus - a Saviour. Now this was a further sign of God's favour to the house of David and the tribe of Judah; for he that intended to work this great salvation among them no doubt would work out for them all those other salvations which were to be the types and figures of this, and as it were preludes to this. "Here is a sign for you, not in the depth nor in the height, but in the prophecy, in the promise, in the covenant made with David, which you are no strangers to. The promised seed shall be Immanuel, God with us; let that word comfort you (Isaiah 8:10), that God is with us, and (v. 8) that your land is Immanuel's land.

God came to dwell among men and become the penalty for their sin, yesterday, today and forever.

As the anticipation grows for the day to acknowledge His birth, the joy of the King that has come quickly fades away in the hearts and minds of men as soon as the festivities end. How sad this is?

When a child is born of a husband and wife, the new parents along with many others, rejoice a whole lot longer than just the day the child was born. But this child will be selfish, obstinate, rude, disrespectful, beligerent and test his/her parents constantly. Now this child will not be troublesome all of their life. They will certainly demonstrate love, compassion, humility, sorrow, honor, responsibility and respect too.

But the Christ has come and was the perfect Child, the perfect Son and is the perfect Savior. He will later become known as the one who knew no sin, so that we would be made righteous with God, through Him (2 Corinthians 5:21).

Sadly though, people still see no desireable beauty in him and they continue to reject him though He is very familiar with our sorrows and grief. Even when the Gospel of His life is spoken of before men, they turn away their faces as well as their ears, becoming deaf and blind to their Savior.

As a beautiful and precious baby that He was, He would grow up to be despised by many. There was no regard to honor Him at all. How selfish and insulting this is!

This Child will be the one that will be wounded for our sins and beaten for our violations of His law.

Yet, the only way to bring peace between sinful humanity and God, was to discipline His Son, whom had not committed these egregious offenses (Isaiah 53:1-6). We did.

Maybe when we look at Jesus in various settings around us, the cards we've received, commercials on television and in the messages proclaimed at church this weekend, it is my hope that you will see Christ more as a Savior, rather than just a baby in a manger, more than the gifts that have been given or received, Christ is a gift from God, the free gift that came to all men, unto justification of life (Romans 5:18).

I hope you will take notice of how often the words "free" and "gift" are referred to in the fifth chapter of Romans, which speaks of Jesus Christ, followed by the last two verses of this chapter and the explicit distinction between Adam's disobedience and resulting effect and Jesus' obedience and resulting reward.

Romans 5:15, But not as the offence, so also is the free gift. For if through the offence of one many be dead, much more the grace of God, and the gift by grace, which is by one man, Jesus Christ, hath abounded unto many.

Romans 5:16, And not as it was by one that sinned, so is the gift: for the judgment was by one to condemnation, but the free gift is of many offences unto justification.

Romans 5:17, For if by one man's offence death reigned by one; much more they which receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness shall reign in life by one, Jesus Christ.

Romans 5:18, Therefore as by the offence of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life.

Romans 5:19, For as by one man's disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous.

Romans 5:20, Moreover the law entered, that the offence might abound. But where sin abounded, grace did much more abound: That as sin hath reigned unto death, even so might grace reign through righteousness unto eternal life by Jesus Christ our Lord.

Immanuel, God with us, has come and Jesus Christ is His gift of salvation and redemption to the world.

It is my hope that your heart and life would be as the shepherds did after witnessing the Savior, Christ the Lord, "the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things that they had heard and seen, as it was told unto them" (Luke 2:20).

O come, let us sing unto the LORD: let us make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation. Psalm 95:1.


Meyers, R. (2006). e-Sword. The sword of the Lord with an electronic edge (Verson 7.8) [Computer software].

Scripture taken from the King James Version. Public domain.

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