If there ever was a doubt in your mind that God is with you, then Christmas ought to remove that doubt!

Why is this true? The proof that God is with you is in the Christmas historical reality that Jesus Christ, born of the Virgin Mary, is "Immanuel -- God with Us".

The Old Testament lesson and the Gospel lesson for this Sunday, the Fourth Sunday in Advent, proclaim this truth.

"Therefore, the Lord Himself will give you a sign: Behold the virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and will call him Immanuel." (Isaiah 7:14)

"Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name 'Jesus', because he will save his people from their sins."

"All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had said through the prophet: 'The virgin will conceive and will give birth to a son, and they will call him 'Immanuel'-- which means, 'God with us'." (Matthew 1:20-22)

The beloved Christmas carols proclaim this truth. We sing these carols on Christmas Eve. We hear the same carols over the P.A. system in the shopping malls and stores. These carols are on our records and CDs, and also streaming online in our homes.

One of our beloved old records in our home includes Bing Crosby singing:

"Oh come, oh come Immanuel, and ransom captive Israel

That mourns in lonely exile here, until the Son of God appear.

Rejoice! Rejoice! Immanuel, shall come to thee, O Israel."

How does this affect you? Well, a person either believes that Jesus is God in human flesh (called the "Incarnation") or a person does not believe it.

But this fact remains: The Incarnation is an objective reality in time and space and history, whether or not anyone believes it.

Herein lies the joy of Christmas. Even when we doubted or wondered whether God was with us, God did come to be with us in the lowly manger at Bethlehem. Mary and Joseph, along with the shepherds and angels, bear witness to us.

This Christian proclamation, since the first century A.D., has transformed human existence and gives meaning to the world's history. If you want to re-familiarize yourself with this joyous and wondrous Christmas event, plan to pick up the Bible and re-read Luke chapter 2 and John chapter 1.

God can remove our doubts and give us peace and joy in Immanuel. Have a wonderful and joyful Christmas with your family and friends! Jesus Christ is indeed, God with us.

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