by Jonathan McLeod

This content is part of a series.

The Promise of Immanuel (2 of 4)
Series: B.C.: Before Christmas
Jonathan McLeod
Isaiah 7:14


One of the best Christmas traditions is going home for Christmas. Naturally, one of our favorite Christmas songs is ''I'll Be Home for Christmas.''

I'll be home for Christmas
You can plan on me
Please have snow and mistletoe
And presents on the tree

But in reality the biblical Christmas story is about leaving home. Luke 2 tells how Mary and Joseph left their home town of Nazareth to travel to Bethlehem where, of course, Jesus was born. And, more significantly, Christmas is the story of how Jesus, God the Son, left his heavenly home to be born as a human baby and become Immanuel-God with us.

''Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel'' (Isa. 7:14).

''She will bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.'' All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had spoken by the prophet: ''Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and they shall call his name Immanuel'' (which means, God with us) (Matt. 1:21-23).

- The promise of Immanuel was given through the prophet Isaiah in around 700 B.C. and was fulfilled by the birth of Jesus.

The prophecy may have been doubly fulfilled. There may have been a near fulfillment (the birth of a son named Immanuel in Isaiah's day) and a far fulfillment (the birth of Jesus, who was literally God with us.).

- The promise of Immanuel was given during a time of FEAR.

This prophecy was given ''in the days of Ahaz'' (Isa. 7:1). King Ahaz and the people of Judah were afraid because of a threat from Syria and Ephraim (v. 2). The ''sign'' the Lord gave the people was meant to give them hope and to encourage them to trust him. The prophecy went on to say that when the child was old enough to choose between right and wrong, the threat from Syria and Ephraim w ...

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