Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel
At the heart of advent is one strikingly awesome fact… we do not have a God who says ascend to my heights and then you will be acceptable.
He says I will descend and become one of them.
The name Isaiah prophesied for the saviour says it all. Immanuel, which means ‘God with us’. That is the heartbeat at the centre of the advent season. God with skin on moves into our neighbourhood. Jesus is literally God… live in concert!
We can be thankful for three reasons…
1. He is GOD with us!
He did not send and emissary or ambassador on His behalf. He Himself came to this fractured and desolately fallen planet to bring restoration. The first ever Christmas gift was that God came in person and gave himself!
2. He is God WITH us!
Contrary to popular belief God does not have an axe to grind against humanity. He created us, He loves us, likes us and He came in flesh because He is FOR us.
3. He is God with US!
He did not come for someone else… He came for you and I and He came on our terms. Intensely personal and familiar. Born to an unmarried teenage mum. Born into homelessness. A refugee from the word go. A man of sorrows familiar with suffering. Despised, hated, rejected. He suffered 3 unjust trials. Was murdered. Exposed naked on a cross and buried in another mans grave. He more than knows what each moment of pain you experience is like because in so many ways He was just like us and is with US!
We can be Thankful In Advent because any way you slice it… He is God with us and good news of great JOY for all the people!
14 Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel. (ESV)