Summary: This is a Bible study suitable for a Sunday School class or small group examining the meaning of the name "Immanuel."
Immanuel, God With Us
(A Bible study)
December 29, 2013
Isaiah 7:14 – “Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and SHALL CALL HIS NAME IMMANUEL.”
Matthew 1:18-25 – “Now the birth of Jesus Christ was on this wise: When as his mother Mary was espoused to Joseph, before they came together, she was found with child of the Holy Ghost. 19 Then Joseph her husband, being a just man, and not willing to make her a public example, was minded to put her away privily. 20 But while he thought on these things, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared unto him in a dream, saying, Joseph, thou son of David, fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife: for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost. 21 And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins. 22 Now all this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying, 23 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. 24 Then Joseph being raised from sleep did as the angel of the Lord had bidden him, and took unto him his wife: 25 And knew her not till she had brought forth her firstborn son: and he called his name JESUS.”
Note the name “Immanuel” mentioned at the end of both Isaiah 7:14 and Matthew 1:23. Immanuel means “God with us,” as Matthew explains. It was prophesied concerning the coming Messiah in Isaiah 7:14, the first scripture we just read, and it was fulfilled in Jesus, the true Messiah, here in Matthew 1:23. The name Immanuel (“God with us”) was also fulfilled in the very NAME of Jesus, which means “Savior.”If He had not been Immanuel (“God with us”), He could not have been Jesus (“Savior”). Let’s dissect the meaning of this name Immanuel.
I. “GOD” - TELLS US OF HIS PERSON.
The term “the Person of Jesus” is a theological term which means the identity of Jesus as both God and man; i.e., the teaching of the incarnation. No one denies the humanity of Jesus, but it’s important to understand that Jesus was also GOD!
How do we know? Let’s look at five unique facts about Jesus that prove His deity:
• Fulfilled prophecies prove His deity.
There are over 61 major Old Testament prophecies, and 600 total Old Testament prophecies, were fulfilled in Jesus Christ. Canon Lidden, an authority on the Old Testament prophecies concerning Jesus, says there are 332 distinct predictions which were literally fulfilled in Christ.”
As you can see, there is some disagreement on the exact number of prophecies concerning Jesus, but one thing they all agree on is that there are a LOT of them. And that fact is one of the greatest proofs of Christianity, as we’ll see in a few moments.
Let’s first look at some examples of the prophecies that Jesus fulfilled, and then we’ll examine the statistical probability of them happening by mere chance (SEE GROUP ACTIVITY AT THE END IN WHICH CLASS MEMBERS READ EACH BELOW):
1) Concerning His birth there were numerous prophecies, including:
That He would be born of a virgin.
That He would be in the line of David.
That He would be born in Bethlehem.
That Herod would kill the babies.
That Jesus would be preceded by a messenger—John the Baptist.
2) Concerning His earthly ministry, there werew a number of prophecies, including:
That His ministry would begin to Galilee.
That He would perform miracles.
That He would teach in parables.
3) Preceding His crucifixion, there were several prophecies about Him, including:
That He would enter Jerusalem on a donkey.
That He would sacrifice His life to save sinners from sin.
4) Concerning His death on the cross, there are numerous prophecies that were fulfilled, such as:
That He would betrayed by a friend.
That He would be sold for thirty pieces of silver.
That He would be forsaken by His disciples.
That He would be accused by false witnesses.
That His death would be by crucifixion.
That He would be wounded and bruised, smitten and spat upon and mocked.
That His hands and feet would be pierced.
That His garments would be parted and lots cast for them.
That gall and vinegar would be offered Him.
And that his bones would not be broken.
5) Concerning prophecies after His death, there were prophecies, including:
That He would rise from the dead.
That He would ascend into heaven.
That’s a lot of fulfilled prophecy! Now what is the statistical probability that all these prophecies could have been happened to a single person by mere chance.