Before I even get started with today’s post, I would like to say that today is a special day for The Heart Man. Today is the 100th blog post!!!!!!!!!!! Woot Woot!!!!!!!!!!!!
In this time of year, lots of people talk about Jesus’ birth, and pretty much read Matthew 1-2 and Luke 1-2:20. Instead I thought I would go a little farther back, about 700 years before the birth of Christ!
Judah is under the threat of war. Both kings from Ephraim (Israel) and Aram are rising up against King Ahaz and Judah. The prophet Isaiah came to the king and told him not to worry. God did not want the these other nations to succeed. He even mentions that Ephraim only has 65 years left. So God told Ahaz to ask for a sign of God’s promise, but he did not wish to do so. The Isaiah said to Ahaz, “Therefore the Lord Himself will give you a sign: Behold, a virgin will be with child and bear a son, and she will call His name Immanuel.” (Isaiah 7:14 NASB).
I remember the first time I read that verse. I grabbed the closest writing utensil next to me, a red pencil, and drew an arrow and wrote “JESUS!” in my Bible (at this point I would refuse to write in my Bible, so yea, I got pretty excited).
But there is something here that is not so easy to see. God told Ahaz to pick anything. It could be as extravagant as he wanted. He could have requested that the stars be realigned to say “God will protect you!” and God would have done it. When Ahaz refused to pick a sign, God offers a child born of a virgin. That alone is pretty miraculous! However, God took it one step farther. The child’s name is Immanuel (or Emmanuel if you prefer). But do you know what his name means? Immanuel means “God with us”.
Essentially God told Ahaz, “If you won’t pick a sign, then I am coming to you in human form.” Jesus is just that. He is God among man. God shed Himself of His glory and humbled Himself to become man. He did this to defeat the enemies (sin) that rise up against us. Our God is a god that fulfills His promises. Even if that means He has to become a man in order to complete them.
Take a moment today, and all throughout the season of Advent to revel in the fact that God was with us, in a little baby called Immanuel.