The greatest treasure we have as believers–the most valuable of all blessings associated with our atonement–is knowing and living in the presence of God. In Exodus 33:15, Moses told God, “If your Presence does not go with us, do not bring us up from here.” God had promised Moses success and favor–he promised the Israelites would reach their goals; however, because they were stiff-necked, His Presence would not go on the journey with them.
Matthew, considering Joseph’s perspective and the angelic message, quotes Isaiah’s prophecy concerning the coming Messiah: “So all this was done that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the Lord through the prophet, saying: ‘Behold, the virgin shall be with child, and bear a Son, and they shall call His name Immanuel,’ which is translated, ‘God with us’ (Matthew 1:22-23).”
What an incredible promise and present reality–that God became a man. Immanuel represents the Divine taking on humanity. Christ became the mediator between God and man. No longer are we separated from God by sin. No longer do we require a high priest to act on our behalf. Christ became our sacrifice and our High Priest. He became Immanuel–God with us!
“For we do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in the time of need” (Hebrews 4:15-16).
“But now He has obtained a more excellent ministry, inasmuch as He is also Mediator of a better covenant, which was established on better promises” (Hebrews 8:6).
“But Christ came as High Priest of the good things to come, with the greater and more perfect tabernacle not made with hands, that is, not of this creation” (Hebrews 9:11).
You and I as born again believers have become the habitation of God’s presence, in which Christ is our High Priest. He is our mediator to God. He brings us boldly before the throne of grace that we may obtain mercy in our time of need. Are you in need today for His Presence? Like Moses, are you desperate for more of Him? A one time experience on the mountaintop would not satisfy Moses–and it should not satisfy us. We should be left longing to know Him more. Jesus came to restore us to a daily, living awareness of God’s Presence. Are you living life behind the veil?