“The virgin shall conceive, have a son, and name him Immanuel.” (Is. 7:14 HCB)
Every birth and every child is unique. When a couple has a girl there is a special feeling and the same happens when a boy is born. When Jesus was born, however, something happened that was and remains truly unique.
First, the way Mary conceived Him was unique. She was a virgin and scripture tells us that the Holy Spirit came in power to “overshadow” her. Mary’s conception points to the fact that Jesus existed before He came to earth.
Next, His birth was already documented in the Old Testament. Not only was his conception predicted (Is. 7:14) but also Micah the prophet identified Bethlehem as the town of His birth (5:2). The prophecies in the Old Testament fueled expectation of a Messiah from God among Jewish believers.
Finally, the prophecies in the Old Testament gave insight and meaning into the birth of Jesus as the one who came to save us from sin and death. Isaiah wrote that the Messiah would be the one who would be “pierced because of our transgressions….” In Matthew we read where the Angel of the Lord commanded Joseph to name the child Jesus because he would, “… save His people from their sins.” (Mt. 1:21)
The birth of Christ is the most significant one in history. He is the only one who can reverse the ruin of our lives caused by our sins. He is the only one who can restore what we lost and the only one who can rule our world to bring it the needed truth and light. He is our hope not just for what He has done but for who He is to us.
We light the candle of hope tonight remembering the prophecies about the birth of the Messiah. As you think of your hope in Christ say a prayer of thanksgiving to the Father for sending His Son to us to save us and give us everlasting hope.