The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel” (which means “God with us”).
Matthew 1:23

There’s now about a week left until Christmas. How would you feel if someone gave away a secret and told you now what gift you will get?

Someone gave away the secret of the very first Christmas gift. Over 700 years before Jesus Christ was born, the prophet Isaiah (among others) told God’s people that Jesus was coming. Most of what we know about Jesus comes from those first four books of the New Testament which we call the gospels—the books of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. But the Old Testament book of Isaiah foretold the work of Christ so clearly that some have called Isaiah the gospel writer of the Old Testament.

The word gospel means good news. And there’s so much good news for us in the message God spoke through Isaiah!

Isaiah 7:14 tells us, “The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and will call him Immanuel.” This prophecy was fulfilled on Christmas when the virgin Mary bore her son Jesus in Bethlehem. Jesus was called “Immanuel”—a name that tells us who he is—God with us. It was God himself who came into the world as a human being that first Christmas.

Through Christ you are God’s child and heaven is yours as a free gift!  That’s the gospel. That’s good news!

Dear God, thank you for coming to be with me, so that I can be with you forever. This time of year, we may have sadness that loved ones are not with us, wealth may not be with us, health and beauty may not be with us. But God is with us. Thank you. Amen.

In Preparation for Worship: 
Revelation 12:1-6
Genesis 4:1-2, 6-8, 25—5:5
Hebrews 10:5-10

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