God With Us

God With Us

“Behold, the virgin shall be with child, and bear a Son, and they shall call His name Immanuel,” which is translated, “God with us.” Matthew 1:23 This is part 2 of 2. You can read part 1 here. When her father heard what had happened to his daughter, he was devastated, but not hopeless. He always knew something like this could happen, so he’d made a plan. He would not leave his beloved daughter in the clutches of the deceiving one, but the only way to rescue his daughter was to become a created one. The deceiving one thought he was so bright. His conceit blinded him from comprehending anything that involved love or self-sacrifice. So, he could never imagine a way for the father to rescue his daughter. In his mind, his trap was airtight, and he thought he had forever foiled the father's righteous influence over creation. Being willing to do absolutely anything for his daughter, the father initiated his plan. He...
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Immanuel

Immanuel

“Behold, the virgin shall be with child, and bear a Son, and they shall call His name Immanuel,” which is translated, “God with us.” Matthew 1:23 It was the darkest and most lonely existence. She could’ve never imagined it. All hope was snuffed out and what remained for the once beautiful appointed one was the agony of lost dreams and purpose. In the beginning, the appointed and created one was the picture of beauty. She was conceived in love, and the plans for her life and future were set in place. She would one day take her place and dispense righteous wisdom and benevolent justice as her father's representative. Her world was lush and fruitful. It was vibrant and alive with expectation. As she walked through the garden of her world, all creation rejoiced in her presence. Her eyes saw nothing but good and her spirit was alive and brought energy to the remainder of her being. From her spirit she knew things, she...
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The Same Dirt

The Same Dirt

“Therefore the Lord Himself will give you a sign: Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a Son, and shall call His name Immanuel.” Isaiah 7:14 Wait! What? A virgin? What in the world? How can that be and what exactly are the implications of such a thing? The virgin birth of Christ is one of the foundational cornerstones of our faith – it’s even in the Apostle’s Creed – and if you’re going to believe in Jesus, you have to believe in the virgin birth too. But why is it important? The virgin birth allowed God to accomplish these two crucial things: Have Jesus be born as a human being Have Jesus be born as a human being without a sin nature This concept can most easily be understood from the Genesis narrative of creation. Genesis 2:7 says: And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and man became a living...
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Called To Be The Light

Called To Be The Light

“He will sit as a refiner and purifier of silver, He will purify the sons of Levi, and purge them as gold and silver, that they may offer to the Lord an offering in righteousness.” Malachi 3:3 When I read the book of Malachi, my heart grieves for the Lord because this book is about a corrupt priesthood. The irony! The people of Israel as a whole were set apart from all the people of the earth for a particular purpose. That purpose was to be a light and an example to the nations. Their holiness and love for a mighty and loving God were to evoke jealousy that would draw nations to God. As you already know, Israel did not live up to their destiny but rebelled at nearly every opportunity. But within this nation of set-apart ones, there was a microcosm that was called to lead the way in consecration. They were the Levites: the priests. Y'all, it's terrible when the priests...
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Who Can Endure?

Who Can Endure?

“Who can endure the day of His coming? And who can stand when He appears? For He is like a refiner’s fire and like launderer’s soap.” Malachi 3:2 When the Lord appears, it will be with such power and authority that everything will bow before His holy presence. In the day of this prophecy, the expectation was that the Messiah would come in great pomp and circumstance and that His coming would set the wrong things right and deliver the people from oppressive government. Nobody ever imagined the Messiah King coming in a humble, meager way. How could an infant born in a lowly stable in Bethlehem cause such shuddering, and dare I say, dread? What nobody realized is that there were two kingdoms at war in the spirit realm; and that God's enemies were not the obvious realities of an oppressive Roman government or threats of captivity from foreign nations. God's enemies were sin and all of its manifestations. God's most significant concern...
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