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A Son Named Immanuel

10 Once again the Lord God spoke to King Ahaz. This time he said, 11 “Ask me for proof that my promise will come true. Ask for something to happen deep in the world of the dead or high in the heavens above.”

12 “No, Lord,” Ahaz answered. “I won't test you!”

13 Then I said:

Listen, every one of you in the royal family of David. You have already tried my patience. Now you are trying God's patience by refusing to ask for proof. 14 (A) But the Lord will still give you proof. A virgin[a] is pregnant; she will have a son and will name him Immanuel.[b] 15-16 Even before the boy is old enough to know how to choose between right and wrong, he will eat yogurt and honey,[c] and the countries of the two kings you fear will be destroyed. 17 But the Lord will make more trouble for your people and your kingdom than any of you have known since Israel broke away from Judah. He will even bring the king of Assyria to attack you.

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  1. 7.14 virgin: Or “young woman.” In this context the difficult Hebrew word did not imply a virgin birth. However, in the Greek translation made about 200 b.c. and used by the early Christians, the word parthenos had a double meaning. While the translator took it to mean “young woman,” Matthew understood it to mean “virgin” and quoted the passage (Matthew 1.23) because it was the appropriate description of Mary, the mother of Jesus.
  2. 7.14 Immanuel: In Hebrew “Immanuel” means “God is with us.”
  3. 7.15,16 yogurt and honey: This may refer either to expensive foods eaten in a time of plenty or to a limited diet eaten in times of a food shortage.

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