O Come, O Come, Emmanuel
14 And Jesus returned to Galilee in the power of the Spirit; and news about Him spread through all the surrounding district. 15 And He began teaching in their synagogues and was praised by all.
16 And He came to Nazareth, where He had been brought up; and as was His custom, He entered the synagogue on the Sabbath, and stood up to read. 17 And the book of the prophet Isaiah was handed to Him. And He opened the book, and found the place where it was written,
18 “The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me,
Because He anointed Me to preach the gospel to the poor.
He has sent Me to proclaim release to the captives,
And recovery of sight to the blind,
To set free those who are downtrodden,
19 To proclaim the favorable year of the Lord.” 20 And He closed the book, and gave it back to the attendant, and sat down; and the eyes of all in the synagogue were fixed upon Him. 21 And He began to say to them, “Today this Scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing.” 22 And all were speaking well of Him, and wondering at the gracious words which were falling from His lips; and they were saying, “Is this not Joseph’s son?”
Immanuel was prophesied. Immanuel was born to Joseph and Mary. Immanuel was Joseph’s son. As Jesus began his earthly ministry, having overcome temptation in the wilderness by Satan and returning in the power of the Holy Spirit, he announced his purpose statement:
- To preach good news to the poor – “good news” (or gospel) here, is the Greek word euangelion. This word refers to a political declaration of the rule and reign of a king. A battle has been won — or a crown prince has been born — the rule and reign of the king continues. To those who have been ravaged and enslaved by their own sin, Jesus here is declaring a new ruling order!
- To heal the broken hearted – there are all kinds of emotional and physical ramifications from sin – sin breaks every person’s heart in multiple ways; Jesus has some to bring full restoration to the deepest hurts in the deepest recesses of the human heart!
We’ll continue unpacking this declaration tomorrow, but for today stop and think about what Jesus’ rule and reign means for you personally. How does he help you overcome your own self-imposed bondage? How has he healed your heart?