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Ezra and Nehemiah: Isaiah 7:14; John 1:14; Colossians 2:9-10

Ezra and Nehemiah: Isaiah 7:14; John 1:14; Colossians 2:9-10

Isaiah 7:14 Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign: The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and will call him Immanuel.

John 1:14 The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.

Colossians 2:9-10 For in Christ all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form, 10 and you have been given fullness in Christ, who is the head over every power and authority.

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The temple was a visible reminder that the Lord was with the Israelites. When the Babylonians destroyed the temple, the people were faced with the fear that God was no longer with them. Of course, this wasn’t entirely true. Through the calamities of war and the captivity of their city, God was calling his people to repentance. They had turned their backs on God through their worship of idols, not the other way around.

One might be tempted to ask, “If God showed his presence through the temple, then why doesn’t he do that any more today?” We don’t need the temple anymore because we have Jesus Christ. Jesus is Emanuel,God with us. The incarnation and birth of the Son of God in Jesus of Nazareth fulfill the Lord’s promise to dwell among his people.

Isaiah prophesied that God would take on human flesh, being born of a virgin. John wrote, “the Word became flesh and dwelt among us.” The Greek word for “dwelt” literally meanstabernacled, evoking God’s gracious presence in the Old Testament tabernacle and Jerusalelm’s temple. Paul writes, “in Christ the whole fullness of the deity dwells bodily,” meaning that all of God fills Jesus. Jesus is God in human flesh. Thus, the Old Testament tabernacle and temple pointed forward to Jesus, who is their fulfillment.

What a great God who comes to dwell with his people, and came to point us the way to salvation.