O Come, O Come Emmanuel

O Come, O Come Emmanuel

John 3:16

During this Advent season, we will likely hear some familiar favorites in our worship gatherings.  As we do, I’d like to encourage you to reflect on the words and the meaning behind them.  Today we will look at a couple of points from the great hymn O Come, O Come Emmanuel.

O 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, O come, Emmanuel.”  The Messiah was promised long ago.  For thousands of years – literally – God’s chosen people had longed for the coming of the Messiah, the Christ.  And this Deliverer would be no mere man.  He would be Emmanuel, “God with us”.

The Messiah came to “ransom captive Israel”.  Israel had known times of captivity in her history.  At the time of Jesus’ birth, Israel was occupied and ruled by the Romans.  But the more significant captivity was their (and our) spiritual captivity.  Jesus said, “Very truly I tell you, everyone who sins is a slave to sin.” (John 8:34)

“Until the Son of God appear.”  The promised Messiah, the One who would deliver God’s people from their slavery to sin, could be nothing less and no one else other than the Son of God. “For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.” (John 3:16).

Our response?  “Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel shall come to thee, O Israel.  Indeed, Emmanuel has come.  Let us rejoice in Him this Christmas and share His love with everyone as you celebrate Jesus.

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