Immanuel | Devotion #4: With Us is God
James Mann | Children’s Director
Immanuel is a symbolic name meaning “with us is God.” This is one of the most beautiful names that we can call Jesus, because it is showing Him actually with us. He is not portrayed as this unattainable figure that we can never get to, but instead as someone who we can enjoy as we spend time with Him. Something that I always found interesting is that people are always waiting for Jesus to come back, but if you are truly a follower of Jesus, you know that He has never left us. Isaiah 8:10 says, “Take counsel together, but it will come to nothing; speak a word, but it will not stand, for God is with us.” Most religions praise and worship a god that they cannot even reach. They are trying to obtain something that is not even possible. Our amazing God has made it possible to reach Him and be with Him.
Something interesting about the name Immanuel is that in the Old Testament (before the birth of Jesus) we first hear the name, Immanuel. Then we hear this name again in Matthew 1:23., “Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and they shall call his name Immanuel.” Many biblical scholars search the Bible for moments like this when the Old Testament is showing us something that will later occur in the New Testament. I like to view the name Immanuel less of a name and more of a promise. The name is brought up in the Old Testament, but then the promise is fulfilled in the New Testament. We receive Immanuel (Jesus) here in Matthew. No longer is God this figure that we cannot see or hear, but He becomes a baby that is born into the world, takes on the sin of the world, and dies for our sins.