"Tychicus will tell you everything." Ephesians 6:21

December 15th, 2015 by Dennis Fuqua

More Than Immanuel

I greatly appreciate the meaning of the word “Immanuel” – God with us.  Pondering this truth comes with the Christmas season.  The thought that the Triune God would and did become one of us in order to be with us is nothing short of amazing.

But I do believe there is something “More Than Immanuel.”  Theologically “Immanuel” is wonderful, but it really is an Old Testament idea.  God was “with” Moses, the prophets, kings, etc.   It is not the primary truth for New Testament believers.  There is something better.

Jesus came as “Immanuel” in order to bring a more significant truth than God with us.  We see this in a pretty obscure verse in John 14.  The last part of verse 17 says that “… for He lives with you, but will live in you.”  Such small words with such large meaning!  The difference between “with” and “in” here is the difference between the way God used to relate to His people and the way He is currently relating to His people.

Jesus went on to say (v20) “On that day you will realize that I am in my Father, and you are in me, and I am in you…. (v23) My Father will love them, and we will come to them and make our home with them.”  Did you catch that?  Jesus says that both He and the Father want to take up residency not just with us but in us.

Here are a few places where Paul elaborates on this.  Romans 8:10-11 says “ But if Christ is in you, then even though your body is subject to death because of sin, the Spirit gives life because of righteousness. 11 And if the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies because of his Spirit who lives in you.”

Galatians 2:20 I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me.  The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.

And, Colossians 1:27 To them God has chosen to make known among the Gentiles the glorious riches of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.

These and many other places in the New Testament state clearly that we, individually and collectively, really are the temple of the Holy Spirit – the place where God lives.

So, as you hear and appreciate “Immanuel,” please let it be a reminder not only that God came to live with us, but also that God came and is living inside of us!  Let it remind you that there is something “More Than Immanuel.”


2 Responses to “More Than Immanuel”
  1. Grand insight that should change the way we think about praying … you are welcome to share it Pray.Network … (:>)

  2. Steve Rosier says

    Dennis, So true! How we need that reminder that God is always in us! I don’t just want people to see Jesus in me, I want them to see Jesus when they see me.

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