“They shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us,” by Louis A. Dole

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“They shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us.” – Matthew 1:23

Readings

Isaiah 61 · Matthew 1:18-25 · Psalm 85

Sermon

Again we celebrate the coming of the Lord into the world. The Gospel story of the Incarnation is brief, and is told in simple terms, yet there never was a more wonderful story. It is the story of the Divine Being reaching forth to men with the purpose of revealing Himself to them, making Himself known, and bringing salvation to a world that had lost all knowledge of Him and that was rushing toward destruction. The more we examine this story the more wonderful it appears, the more it reveals the love of our Heavenly Father and His special care for each one of us.

And the story sets vividly before us the character of the world into which He came, the sinfulness and blindness of men. John writes, “And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not… He was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew him not.” God had come to be regarded as man’s most terrible enemy. Now He was coming to subdue man’s real enemies, to rescue him from their power, and to show that He is man’s infinite and unchanging Friend.

It is important to keep in mind the fact that it was God Himself who came into the world. If we lose sight of this, we lose sight of the essential truth. He was not an angel, He was not a son born from eternity, He was not a man filled with a larger measure of Divine love and wisdom. He was God, the only God of heaven and earth. He came to be “God with us.”

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