“Therefore the Lord Himself will give you a sign.
Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a Son,
and shall call His name Immanuel.”
Immanuel, as you may know, means “God with us.” When we understand the meaning of that Christmas promise, made by prophecy from God centuries before Christ came, then we begin to understand why Christmas is something to celebrate.
Without understanding the name’s meaning, some have thought that the special thing about the virgin birth was the virgin herself. They have the impression that she might even be worthy of worship or someone close enough to the throne of God to intercede for them there when they pray. But this first announcement God made of the virgin birth long before it happened shows us that it wouldn’t be the virgin that should be noticed. The sign of the virgin birth was that the child would be “Immanuel” – “God with us.” That’s what is so special about this event. The Child would have no human father, because while He would be a person like us, He wouldn’t be just a person. He would be God. God, Who had come to be with us. To be one of us. To be for us.
And when that Child was born, truly it was “good news of great joy, which shall be to all people,” as the angel promised the shepherds. Because if God is with us, out of that truth flow solutions to every problem. God is with us. That is good news!
It’s especially good news for the person whose loneliness is magnified at Christmas. God Himself is with us who know Christ.
It’s good news to the sinner, who fears the judgment and condemnation his life has earned. God is with us. And for us. And He loves us enough to come to us, live with us, die for us, and rise again to life to save us.
It’s good news to the agnostic, who wonders if God is really there, and if He really desires involvement in our lives.
It’s good news to the hurting and the oppressed, to know that God will take up their cause as a strong Defender.
It’s good news to those who mourn the loss of loved ones, knowing that the God of eternity is with us, and will reunite us with those to whom we had to say goodbye.
It’s good news to those who have an aching emptiness because they haven’t found a fulfilling purpose in life—to know that they were created with a purpose and that the Creator is with them to find it.
Even better news–If you have received Christ, then God is not just with you, but in you. He was with Herod, the Pharisees, and other religious leaders, but they rejected Him, so He was not in them.
By faith, you can have God with you, and living in you, giving you new life and life eternal. Don’t miss that great Christmas miracle. Because this God, the Savior, Who is with us, is Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, and the Prince of Peace. In each of those things, He is a truly wonderful Gift. “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only Son, so that whoever believes on Him would not be destroyed, but have everlasting life.”