December 2, 2018
365 Days of the Great Names of God, Day 2: Emmanuel
Emmanuel: God with us
"All this took place to fulfill what had been spoken by the Lord through the prophet: 'Look, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and they shall name him Emmanuel,' which means, 'God is with us.'" (Matthew 1:22,23 NRS)
Welcome back, friends. I'm so glad you're here! Right away, on Day 2 of our series, I want to let you know about something that will hold true going forward: without using too many tricky words like "triune," my plan is to study the names of, well, the triune God...which is to say God the Father, God the Spirit, and God the Son. All are equally God, so their specific names are all equally names of God. (I'll save a discussion of what, exactly, the Trinity is for God's Q&A session in heaven.)
This name of God is so relevant for Advent, which is why I wanted to visit it early on our journey. My Bible study sisters know I LOVE the literal translation of Emmanuel, which is based on the fact that "el," meaning "God," comes at the end of this name, giving it a rendering of "with-us God." Any way you look at it, I'm so thankful He is a "with-us God" who loved us enough to come and dwell ("pitch his tent" or "camp out" are other ways of looking at it) among us.
With us in joy.
With us in sorrow.
With us in hurting.
With us in healing.
With us in doubt.
With us in certainty.
With us in beginning.
With us in ending.
Sometimes, we say to each other, "God be with you," almost like a wish. But Emmanuel shows us this certainty: God is with you.
With you. With me. With us all.