Emmanual ( Septuagint Emmanouel ; A.V., Immanuel ) signifies " God with us" ( Matthew 1:23 ), and is the name of the child predicted in Isaiah 7:14 : "Behold a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and his name shall be called Emmanuel". The various views advanced as to the identity of the child cannot be fully explained and discussed here; the following observations must suffice:
The question why the Messias was called Emmanuel, or " God with us", admits of a double answer: the name is a pledge of Divine help and also a description of the nature of the Messias. King Achaz had not believed the Prophet's first promise of deliverance from his enemies, Rasin, King of Syria, and Phacee, King of Israel ( Isaiah 7:1-9 ). And when the Prophet tried a second time to restore his confidence, Achaz refused to ask for the sign which God was ready to grant in confirmation of the prophetic promise (7:10-12). The Prophet, therefore, forces, in a way, King Achaz to confide in God, showing that the Messias, the hope of Israel and the glory of the house of David, implies by his very name "Emmanuel", or " God with us", the Divine presence among his people. A number of the Fathers, e.g. St. Irenaeus, Lactantius, St. Epiphanius , St. Chrysostom, and Theodoret, regard the name "Emmanuel", not merely as a pledge of Divine assistance, but also as an expression of the mystery of the Incarnation by virtue of which the Messias will be " God with us" in very deed.
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