Day 48: Immanuel

“All right then, the Lord Himself will give you the sign. Look! The virgin will conceive a child! She will give birth to a son and will call him Immanuel (which means ‘God is with us’).”

Isaiah 7:14

Immanuel: God with us

Here is the name of God many of us know, the name we have heard in songs and services and plastered on decorations from the time we were very small. Immanuel. And we even know what it means – God with us – don’t we?

We know this name belongs to Jesus. But do we know it was His before Christmastime was ever a thought?

Isaiah 7 was a beautiful passage before we knew the half of it. The land of Judah and the land of Israel were divided at this time, and the kings of Israel had long since stopped following God. In fact, they were enemies of Judah, the line through which God’s promise was being carried. At this moment in history, they were plotting with Syria to attack Judah, and it says, “the hearts of the king and his people trembled with fear, like trees shaking in a storm.” It was into this moment that God planted this Name – God with us.

Oh, do I know fear. Oh, do I know the fear of things too big for me! And what does God say to this fear? His name – the God who is with us, and like a child beside her father in the dark, I am not afraid.

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