Day 7: “O Come, O Come Emmanuel”

Read: Matthew 1:23

O Come, O Come Emmanuel

O Come O Come EmmanuelO come, O come, Emmanuel
And ransom captive Israel
That mourns in lonely exile here
Until the Son of God appear
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel.

O come, Thou Rod of Jesse, free
Thine own from Satan’s tyranny
From depths of Hell Thy people save
And give them victory o’er the grave
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel.

O come, Thou Day-Spring, come and cheer
Our spirits by Thine advent here
Disperse the gloomy clouds of night
And death’s dark shadows put to flight.
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel.

O come, Thou Key of David, come,
And open wide our heavenly home;
Make safe the way that leads on high,
And close the path to misery.
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel.

O come, O come, Thou Lord of might,
Who to Thy tribes, on Sinai’s height,
In ancient times did’st give the Law,
In cloud, and majesty and awe.
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel.

Time after time, the Israelites found themselves separated from God – always by their own doing. And God would eventually deliver them, only to be betrayed by His chosen people again. So we find two constant themes in the Old Testament:

The Israelites, no matter how hard they tried, were unfaithful to God.

God remained faithful and fulfilled the promises He made to them.

Through His prophets, God made many promises. Isaiah 7:14 says, “Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and you shall call his name Emmanuel.” The name Emmanuel translates as “God with us.” It’s a remarkable promise – the Ultimate Being and Creator of the Universe promising to make Himself physically present with the people who have proven themselves unworthy.

In one of the most somber Christmas songs, “O Come, O Come Emmanuel”, there is an embraced tension within Israel. They are in exile, separated from God yet again. With a sober perspective, they choose to rejoice in the promise God has made to them. With nothing else to cling to, in the midst of desperation and loneliness, they recall and proclaim the promise that God would be with them – knowing that, in spite of their unfaithfulness, God is faithful to His promises.

No one could have expected a baby in a manger to be the start of God’s perfect plan to be “with us.” And yet, that is exactly how God fulfilled His promise.

Are you waiting for God to come through on a promise He has made? Do you feel a sense of loneliness or exile? Rejoice! Rejoice! Through Christ, God has made Himself present to us. His faithfulness is greater than our failure. And His presence is all the reason we need to, once more, rejoice!

Question:

  • Since God is “Emmanuel,” how is God with you this holiday season?

From Carols: A Christmas Devotional
God is with us – in answered promises, realized dreams, and refreshed hope. How could we help but sing. During this Christmas season, explore the songs that were born from our joy that Christ has entered the world and rediscover their relevance in your life today in this 25-day reading plan.

Source: LifeChurch.tv
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