with a passion to worship God,
who care for one another
and bring God’s love into a broken world”
'...Immanuel - which means, "God with us"' - Math. 1:23
We've entered the Christmas season and celebrate the birth of Jesus, 'God with us'. The name Immanuel goes back to a prophecy of Isaiah given to Ahaz, king of Judah. For the people it was a time of war, conflict and despair, under the leadership of a king who was unfaitful to God.
But in this dark time, God gave the king and the people a 'sign': 'the virgin will...give birth to a son, and will call him Immanuel' [[Is. 7:14]. This sign was a warning to the king to repent. But for the people it was a sign of hope. In the midst of death, loss and suffering, the name of the child showed that God wasn't only faithful, He was even their 'with them'. In the suffering.
The prophecy is fulfilled in the birth of Jesus Christ. He is the sign that shows that God indeed is faithful to a world that is unfaithful to him. Jesus 'Immanuel' is the sign that shows that in the midst of all suffering, God indeed is with us, fulfilling His plan of redemption. Much of God's plan for redemption is still unseen. But exactly in a time like this the sign Himself Jesus Christ is given to you, to not lose hope but to have trust that God is with us.
Merry Christmas and a blessed 2018!