by Justin Huffman
"And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins. Now all this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying, Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us" (Matthew 1:21-23).
After the long genealogy with which Matthew opens his gospel in verses 1 through 17, proving that Jesus was indeed the promised son of Abraham and of David, we finally come to the fruition of hundreds of years of prophecy: "A virgin shall be with child...Emmanuel...God with us."
We cannot help but notice the implications of this child's birth -- the person at the end of this lengthy genealogy is older than the person at the beginning!
Because this is no mere man: this is the God-man, the foretold Messiah who would come to save his people from their sins. So, although Abraham's name begins the list of Jesus' ancestors in this chapter, Jesus himself would later say, "Before Abraham was, I AM" (John 8:58).
As Emmanuel, God with us, Jesus is both the promise maker and the promise itself. The birth of this baby was an eternal, breathtaking statement: Jehovah saves!
All the claims of Christianity are here summed up in one verse, Matthew 1:21, and then in one word, "Emmanuel."
God himself has come to save his people from their sins, in the person and work of Jesus the Christ.
In this season of celebration, rejoice in this announcement: God is with us. And it no longer is merely a promise, nor is it a prayer, but a wonderful, miraculous, gracious reality.
© Baptist Bible Hour
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