“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 1:23 KJV)
EMMANUEL, GOD WITH US – RECONCILIATION OF MANKIND WITH GOD.
It was God’s love and concern for mankind which compelled Him to send Jesus, who is a revelation of “God with us”, Emmanuel. Jesus is the one who makes people holy through his suffering and death. He became one with or the “brother of” those who were bring sanctified by him. Jesus became like his brethren in his role as a merciful and faithful high priest able to help those tempted and make it possible for them to be reconciled with God.
“Jesus, who makes people holy, and all those who are made holy have the same Father. That is why Jesus isn’t ashamed to call them brothers and sisters. Since all of these sons and daughters have flesh and blood, Jesus took on flesh and blood to be like them. He did this so that by dying he would destroy the one who had power over death (that is, the devil). In this way he would free those who were slaves all their lives because they were afraid of dying. So Jesus helps Abraham’s descendants rather than helping angels. Therefore, he had to become like his brothers and sisters so that he could be merciful. He became like them so that he could serve as a faithful chief priest in God’s presence and make peace with God for their sins. Because Jesus experienced temptation when he suffered, he is able to help others when they are tempted.” (Heb.2:11, 14-18 NOG)
The Apostle John stated it simply as “God loved the world this way: He gave his only Son so that everyone who believes in him will not die but will have eternal life.” (John 3:16 NOG)
EMMANUEL, GOD WITH US – A REVELATION THROUGH HOLY SPIRIT.
1God [is] our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.2Therefore will not we fear, though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea;3[Though] the waters thereof roar [and] be troubled, [though] the mountains shake with the swelling thereof. Selah.4[There is] a river, the streams whereof shall make glad the city of God, the holy [place] of the tabernacles of the most High.5God [is] in the midst of her; she shall not be moved: God shall help her, [and that] right early.”
(Psalm 46:1-5 KJV)
Jesus prayed for the Father to send his disciples (John 14:16) the Holy Spirit, who is depicted in New Testament scripture as living waters. Many including myself have a revelation of the “river” in Psalm 46 as the Holy Spirit. The “river, the streams whereof shall make glad” the people of God, who are His dwelling or “city of God, the holy [place] of the tabernacles of the most High” (KJV). The New Living translation of the bible states that the river “brings joy to the city of God”.
When one has the joy of the LORD, one has the life of God because His joy is an outflow of His life imparted to anyone who belongs to Him so that they can live and labour for Him.
God is with us through Christ. He is our refuge. Despite the rage of heathens and kingdoms against God’s people some of which are happening today, God always speaks into such situations and gives us peace or stillness in our hearts regardless of the situation (Ps.46:6-11 KJV). Nehemiah who was faced with continues intimidation and provocation from those opposing the re-building of the walls of Jerusalem was able to use words such as “…the joy of the Lord is your strength” (Neh. 8:10) when addressing the people. When we read the account of the opposition Nehemiah went through, we can see that if but for the strength of God enabling him to administer wisdom and stay bold he would have easily backed down.
What “earthquakes” or shaking “mountains” are you experiencing in your life today? Let the joy of the Lord, from the River of Life be your strength. Stay in fellowship with God in the Spirit.
Jesus was the giver of life which includes joy in his ministry on earth and was determined to continue doing so as a Comforter or parent even after his ascension this is why he
1.Asked Father to send the Holy Spirit to his disciples.
“And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another advocate to help you and be with you forever— 17 the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you. 18 I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you.” (John 14:16-18 NIV)
2.Told His disciples to remain in His love (which is abiding in the life of God) and the way to do so is by obeying His command. This is how to have the joy of the LORD within.
9 “As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Now remain in my love. 10 If you keep my commands, you will remain in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commands and remain in his love. 11 I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete.” (John 15:9-11 NIV)
Jesus also said to his disciples
1.“The Spirit alone gives eternal life. Human effort accomplishes nothing. And the very words I have spoken to you are spirit and life” (John 6:63 NLT).
This is why we must let the Word of God dwell in us richly (Col. 3:16). Living a Christ centered life means that the Word of God, the Bible is where we turn to for wisdom and how to live holy lives.
The Holy Spirit is the “Spirit of Prophecy”. He knows the mind and will of God and imparts it to us (1 Corinth 2) and also testified of Jesus, reminding us of his spoken words or teachings (Rev 19:10/John 14:25-26)
2.“The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly”. (John 10:10 KJV).
Through Christ therefore, “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore will not we fear…” (Ps. 46:1-2) whatever the thief (Satan and his agents) comes to do.
EMMANUEL, GOD WITH US – UNITY OF BELIEVERS
One of Jesus’ missions which is to unite believers in him is the subject of his intercessory prayer to God on their behalf. The purpose of their unity is expressed in Jesus’ prayer (John 17:21): “I won’t be in the world much longer, but they are in the world, and I’m coming back to you. Holy Father, keep them safe by the power of your name, the name that you gave me, so that their unity may be like ours…I pray that all of these people continue to have unity in the way that you, Father, are in me and I am in you. I pray that they may be united with us so that the world will believe that you have sent me. (John 17:11, 21)
To conclude, let us give thanks and praise to God our Father that because He came in the person of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ we have His abundant and eternal life. The coming of the Holy Spirit, the River of Life, to indwell believers in Christ on the day of Pentecost and thereafter is as though Jesus never left the earth. Through the Holy Spirit therefore, Jesus’ life as Emmanuel or “God with us” during his public ministry until his death, burial and resurrection still continues to this day and will continue until His Second Coming.
As a believer in Jesus Christ, be reminded that the Holy Spirit indwelling you means that God is with you. As part of the Body of Christ world wide “the City of God” a people with God in them, living lives together in christlikeness, you are called in unity with others and individually to be a testimony of the goodness of God or the blessings of the kingdom; “Righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit” (Romans 14:17 NIV).
We who believe are assured a place in paradise at the end of the age, meanwhile, may we obey Jesus’ new commandment:
“Dear children, I will be with you only a little longer. …34 So now I am giving you a new commandment: Love each other. Just as I have loved you, you should love each other. 35 Your love for one another will prove to the world that you are my disciples.” (John 13:33-35 NLT)
It is therefore worth keeping in mind the fact that it is not merely being a part of the Body of Christ or the Church that testifies that God is with us, but the act of unity and love for one another regardless of gender, race, nationality or social class status. This will prove to the world that we are indeed children of God and that indeed God is with and in us.
You are blessed, determine to stay blessed!
©Deborah E.Nyamekye 15/12/2015