His Name is Jesus, His Name is Yahweh Saves and He will save His people from their sins and…and what? And His people will look to Jesus and say, “God is with us.”
God is with us. This is the Good News of the victory of Jesus in this world. In Jesus, God is with us. In Jesus, we have our Emmanuel.
Now, how does this happen? Well, He has to be born to die. The glories of the Incarnation end in the darkness of a tomb. Peace and good will toward men is only possible because the birth of Jesus, leads to the salvation of Yahweh, which is the cross and tomb.
I’m not sure if Joseph and Mary knew what was going to happen to their son. I’m not sure if they knew He would suffer as He did. What would they have thought knowing the end of the baby boy that was to be born?
But we can’t forget that this is the way Jesus saves His people from their sins. He saves them from their sins because He receives their sins upon Himself.
This, I think, is the majesty of the Incarnation. The Son of God in heaven, looks down on this world, for the time has come, and the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit see their world filled with sin, the curse, and death, and the Son of God looks to the Father and says, “I’ll take it all. Put it on me and kill Me. My blood will pay for a new world.”
Remember these words from Philippians 2,
“Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though He was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. Therefore God has highly exalted Him and bestowed on Him the Name that is above every name, so that at the Name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.”
This was the plan all along.
Jesus, Yahweh Saves, was born in the world to take away the sins of His people, so that they may proclaim, “God is with us” Emmanuel. The Son of God emptied Himself of His heavenly glory and was born in the likeness of man and was obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.
Jesus came to this world, born of Mary and the Holy Spirit, a sinless man in a curse-filled world and He took that curse upon Himself and that is how He saves.God with us. Now, let me say that again. God with us. Or, God with us. Or even, God with us. Take your pick, emphasize any of those three words, and it baffles the mind.
God with us. Do you know who we are? Hold the mirror of the Scripture up to your heart and see what is there. Guilt, greed, envy, lust, anger, impatience, pride, rebellion, and that is just a small list. And the Incarnation is the Good News that God came to us. He chose a wretch as His own.
Whenever you are feeling crumby, down about yourself, a little depressed, anxious, guilty, ashamed, whatever it is, remember that God came to be with you. Yes, you. You with all your remaining sin and fault and ugliness. God came to be with you. This news is beyond value and ought to comfort your hearts even in the darkest night of your soul.
Let’s emphasize another word. God with us. This hardly needs to be expanded upon. The Triune God, the only uncreated being, the timeless, eternal, unchanging, omnipotent, omnipresent, omniscient God, the God who is holy, holy, holy, the God who can allow no unclean thing in His presence, came. This God with us.
How about the middle word? God with us. Oh the joy in such a statement! This is Christmas! God with us. Not God over there, not us in the pit. Not God over us, not God at a distance, not God outside the camp, not God distanced through complex ceremonial laws, not God separated from His people by sin, or the curse, or death.
This is Christmas! God with us. And think about our biggest enemy, that faceless reaper, death. Not even death can break that promise. The Son of God, born in a cursed world, took it all upon Himself. Brought it in the grave with Him, and left it there. Sin, the curse, and death have nothing on you.
God with us.
This is Advent, and the good news of Advent will never cease to be amazing. The gift of Christmas is Emmanuel, our salvation,
Do not fear; God with us.
In the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.