Happy New Year! I trust that you and your family had a wonderful holiday break and that you were able to see Christ in a fresh, new way.
I want to continue in our theme “let me tell you about my Jesus” in this new year. This week let us focus on Isa. 7:14 and Mt. 1:23 and the name Immanuel – God with us:
Isa 7:14 Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.
Mat 1:23 “Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and they shall call his name Immanuel” (which means, God with us).
Isa. 7:14 starts off with the word “therefore.” We need to ask, “Why is it was there for?” If you were to read the previous verses of the chapter, the prophet Isaiah, speaking on behalf of God Almighty, asks King Ahaz, “What kind of a sign he would desire from the LORD?” The kicker here of this question is that
Ahaz did not follow the LORD. So, to request a sign from the LORD would put his belief system in jeopardy. Essentially, calling out his unbelief. Also, Ahaz and his kingdom were in a bit of a bind, shaking with fear, as the Syrians and the Ephraimites had signed a pact to invade and annihilate the nation of Judah. So, a prophetic sign from the LORD about this potential invasion would have been helpful, but Ahaz spurned the request.
Now we are up to v. 14 and notice what happens. Though God is miffed that Ahaz spurned His request, He goes ahead and gives him (Ahaz and the Southern Kingdom) a sign anyway. We are reminded with this action that we cannot control God. He loves us so much that He will look out for us anyway. Also, God does not use a “third party” for the delivery of this sign, but He alone is the “deliverer.” (More on that thought in the future)
For this newsletter, I am going to jump over the next phrase (discussed in a future newsletter) and focus in on the name that was prophesied to be given to the baby – Immanuel. Matthew as noted above includes the meaning of the name – “God with us.” As we have seen, one chapter later, the prophet prophetically assigns Jesus some additional names. Nevertheless, the name Immanuel – God with us, carries so much weight.
William Harris offers eight points as the meaning of this great and extraordinary title – listed below. I would like to pull out a couple of those point for our discussion – He took on our nature and He will be the glorious and triumphant Head of the redeemed world forever. When Christ came to earth as a babe, He totally change the course of human thought. Prior to this the Israelites and surrounding nations only saw God in signs and wonders. Now, He was right there in front of them in person, yet fully God. I cannot fully imagine how mind blowing that was for some. Others readily accepted Him as the Messiah. When we repent of our sins and accept Christ’s forgiveness and His eternal life, He also implants His Holy Spirit into our lives – Eph. 1:13. In this case God is with us and in us. Then the question becomes, “How does this knowledge impact how we operate on a day-to-day basis?”
The Christmas program has been rescheduled for Jan. 12th @ 6:30pm. Please have your student(s) at the school by 6:20pm (Kindergarten 6:10pm). Also, as a reminder the students are to be dressed in white dress shirt, black pants, and black shoes.
Wanted: One or two more individuals that could sub teach when needed. A bachelor’s degree from an accredited school is needed.
Looking forward, Feb 1 is the start of the School Choice registration season.
Continue to pray for God’s holy fire to rain down daily burning away the dross of sin.
Pressing forward for His glory,
The meaning of this great and extraordinary title, IMMANUEL (cf. Isa 8:8
and Mat 1:23). This title may be considered under a double reference, either
1. To the constitution of His person; or, 2. To His office and actings as mediator. 1. It is one of the great mysteries of the Christian revelation that
“God was manifest in the flesh.” The eternal Son of God became man and was both God and man in His own person. In a matter of pure revelation, and of so sublime a nature, it is certainly the wisest and safest course to keep close to the revelation and make it the standard and measure of all our conceptions about it. 2. As mediator, He is Immanuel in this sense, that in Him the presence and favour of God with His people are most eminent and conspicuous. This has always been true, is true now, and always will be true.
(1.) As a distant friend is said to be “with us” whose heart and thoughts are with us (1Co 5:3), so Christ was Immanuel from all eternity as to His purpose and design of mercy, and as His heart was towards us with thoughts of pleasure (Pro 29:17). (2.) All the appearances of God to His people under the Old Dispensation were appearances of Christ (Joh 1:18; Joh 5:37; 2Co 4:6). 3. As He took our nature and became man. This is the essential and highest meaning of our text. He took upon Him our nature, with all its parts and powers, all its natural affections and infirmities, sin only excepted. 4. As He conversed with men and revealed the will of God to them. 5. As He offered Himself a sacrifice for sin, and reconciled God and man together. This is mentioned by the Evangelist in the same context (Mat 1:21). This was the
great end of His taking our nature and coming into the world (Heb 5:9). 6. As He gives His Spirit to every true believer and is powerfully present with them to the end of the world. He is present in them, on the principle of Divine life in their souls (Joh 14:16; Eph 3:17). He is present with them whensoever they assemble to hear His Word or observe His ordinances (Mat 18:20; Joh 20:19). He is always present with His Church to preserve and succour it. 7. As He will be the visible Judge of the world at last; He will be Judge in our nature who was Saviour of our nature (Joh 5:22; Act 17:13). 8. He will be the glorious and triumphant Head of the redeemed world forever. Their happiness will lie very much in being with Him and beholding His glory, and their employment in adoring love and triumphant praise. – W.
Jan. 12 6:30 Christmas Program
Jan. 13 End of Second Quarter/ First Semester
Feb. 20 Presidents’ Day – No School
Basketball is in full swing. Come cheer on your Jaguars!
Check the Athletic Calendar for sports, dates, times, and addresses. You will have to click on the event for the details.
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