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Saturday, December 25, 2021
Bible Meditation: 
Isaiah 9: 1-8

...the government shall be upon His shoulder: and His name shall be called WONDERFUL… – Isaiah 9:6a

The Reason for this Season of Redemption is JESUS CHRIST, whose Name is WONDERFUL – EMMANUEL: “For unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given: and the government shall be upon His shoulder: and His name shall be called WONDERFUL, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace” (Isa.9:6). He that’s called WONDERFUL is also our EMMANUEL: “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” (Mt.1:23). Could there be a greater Wonder than this?

“Unto us a CHILD is BORN…” In His humanity, Jesus was born as a child by the Virgin Mary, begotten of the Holy Ghost. He was born, as certainly a child as any other human being that ever lived on earth. This is an undisputable historical fact: God the Son became Man, was born at Bethlehem, wrapped in swaddling clothes, and laid in a manger. We’ll never cease celebrating the Birth of the Child Jesus. That’s where the story of redemption began to unfold on earth. But, there is more!

“Unto us a SON is GIVEN.” As God’s Son, Jesus was not only born, but GIVEN: “For God so loved the world, that He GAVE His only begotten SON…” (Jh.3:16). Jesus was begotten of His Father from before the worlds were made. He was begotten – not made; being of the same substance with the Father, as a son is part of the father: “I will declare the decree: The LORD has said to Me, ‘You are My Son, Today I have begotten You” (Psa.2:7). Heaven testified at Jordan and the Transfiguration: “This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased” (Mt.3:17b; 17:5). Jesus Himself affirmed: “I and My Father are one” (Jh.10:30). What a holy mystery and solemn revelation – this eternal affiliation of Christ with the Father! (Phil.2:5-11).

The undisputable reality of redemption is that God has given His only begotten Son to be the Saviour of humanity: “…unto US…unto US…” In this season of Redemptive Joy and Gratitude, individuals of us need to reflect and ask: What does the Birth of Jesus mean to me? Has the Son been given to me? Do I have a personal interest and stake in the Messiah-Babe that was born in the Manger? Have I known the Son as my Saviour? Have I received Him who was given? Only those who are born again can claim the Babe in Bethlehem as being theirs and the Son as their personal Lord and Saviour.

Our God has such beautiful and enlightening names. Embedded in the Name Emmanuel are deep reasons for a wonderful season. With this name adorning sermon titles and Christmas cards, being sung in hymns and carols, and painted on banners, the impact is often lost on humanity, as we overlook or are completely oblivious of its true meaning. Centuries before Christ was born, God promised through the words of Isaiah the prophet: Therefore the Lord Himself will give you a sign: Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a Son, and shall call His name Immanuel” (Isa.7:14). The Gospel writers echoed Isaiah’s words whole telling the story of Christ’s birth, with an addition: “Behold, the virgin shall be with child, and bear a Son, and they shall call his name Immanuel,” which is translated, “GOD WITH US” (Mt.1:23).

With all of our filth, irreverence and rebellion, we should expect the Most High God to be done with us, wash His hands off us, keep us far off from Him, cut us off forever – or, at worst, utterly annihilate us. But, God is with us! This is the precious truth for this season: God drew near to sinful humanity and bound Himself to be with us for all eternity. It had always been God over us and above us; God on the mountain, God in the temple, and God in the cloud. Now, it’s God with us and in us!

Adetokunbo O. Ilesanmi (Meditations)

Dear Lord, Reason for the Season, let us know You more intimately as WONDERFUL – EMMANUEL, God With Us, in Jesus name.
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