Immanuel, God is with us
In the sixth month of Elizabeth’s pregnancy, God sent the angel Gabriel to Nazareth, a village in Galilee, to a virgin named Mary. She was engaged to be married to a man named Joseph, a descendant of King David. Gabriel appeared to her and said, “Greetings, favored woman! The Lord is with you!” Confused and disturbed, Mary tried to think what the angel could mean. “Don’t be afraid, Mary,” the angel told her, “for you have found favor with God! You will conceive and give birth to a son, and you will name him Jesus. He will be very great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his ancestor David. And he will reign over Israel forever; his Kingdom will never end!” Luke 1:26-33
Angel Gabriel visited Mary in Nazareth and told her that she would be the mother of the Messiah. Mary was probably a teenager, for Jewish girls married young. She was betrothed or engaged to a carpenter named Joseph. Mary came from the line of David (Luke 3:31) and was a virgin (v. 27; Isaiah 9:6). In those days, betrothal is for a period of one year and was equated to marriage except that they did not live together and engaged in sexual intimacy. This explains why Joseph was called her “husband” even before they actually were wed (Matthew 1:19). Gabriel told Mary, “You have found favor with God!” She was a godly woman and it was God’s grace that made her to be His choice to be the mother of God, the Messiah. It was also because of His grace that all people will have the opportunity to come to know Him as Savior. “So we praise God for the glorious grace he has poured out on us who belong to his dear Son” (Ephesians 1:6). God’s promised Messiah will be in Mary’s womb and it will be through God’s power that the birth will not be like any other because the child will be born through the Holy Spirit. For centuries, Israel had eagerly awaited the day of His arrival for He will bring peace between man and God and “His kingdom will never end.” He came to be the Messiah, your Savior and this was to fulfill the promise. “The Lord himself will give you the sign. Look! The virgin will conceive a child! She will give birth to a son and will call him Immanuel (which means ‘God is with us’)” (Isaiah 7:14). What do you look for a Savior? Who is your God? The answer to these questions depends upon the authority you trust. If your authority comes from God and His Word, the Bible, then you will receive that Jesus fulfilled what was promised in God’s Word. Jesus is the realization of what God promised through the prophets from the Old Testament. Have you out grown the Christmas story that now you no longer marvel on its message? Do not take for granted the message of Christmas for in it the omnipotent God meets man to be with us. “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God... The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth” (John 1:1, 14, NIV).