The Nativity Story: The Faith of Mary
Sermon shared by C. Raymond Van Pletsen
Summary: Mary teaches us that we too can be used by God to change the world. We learn from her that . . . Faith is not age-dependent. Faith positions us to be part of the greatest event in all human history. Faith means do what God says regardless of the cost.
Series: The Nativity Story
Denomination: Christian/Church of Christ
Audience: General adults
Although Mary had not asked for a sign, the angel offered proof to Mary of Godís power by pointing out that . . .
Elizabethís Pregnancy Was Proof Of Godís Power
Gabriel told Mary that her relative Elizabethís pregnancy was proof that nothing is impossible with God. Elizabeth had never had children and she was past child-bearing age when the angel appeared to Zechariah and told him that Elizabeth would bear a son (Luke 1:19).
The angelís visit to Mary took place in the sixth month of the pregnancy of Maryís cousin Elizabeth. The significance of this was that after Mary was visited by the angel she was able to visit Elizabeth and see another miracle Ė that a woman past child-bearing age was pregnant. While not as phenomenal a miracle as what took place in Mary, it nonetheless confirmed the angelís message.
With quiet faith Mary accepted the angelís explanation and submitted herself to the Lord.
Mary Obeyed The Lord
Lk 1:38 ďI am the Lordís servant,Ē Mary answered. ďMay it be to me as you have said.Ē Then the angel left her.
Knowing the enormous price she was about to pay, Mary surrendered herself first to the Lord and then to His plan. Notice that although we have made much of the cost to Mary, she says not a word of it!
She said, ďI am the Lordís servant.Ē Thereís a wonderfully childlike aspect to her faith. With absolute trust Mary bows herself to the will of God and declares herself to be His servant. Her words must have brought great joy to the heart of God. He has always longed for His people to give themselves so unreservedly to Him.
Mary also surrendered herself to the Lordís plan for her life, as costly as it was going to be: ďMay it be to me as you have said.Ē
Paul praised the Macedonian churches for following the same sequence when they gave sacrificially to help other Christians in need:
2 Corinthians 8:5 And they did not do as we expected, but they gave themselves first to the Lord and then to us in keeping with Godís will.
They gave themselves first to the Lord, then they gave their money. God wants us to first give Him ourselves and then give Him our obedience.
In all of history there is only one man who bears the honor of being the first man to walk on the moon. In fact, he is the only man ever to walk on any other heavenly body than earth. No-one else can lay claim to that fame, and no-one else will ever be able to. This unique place in all of human history belongs solely to Neil Armstrong.
In all of history there was only one woman chosen for the honor of giving birth to the King of kings. While generations of women may have desired the honor, it was reserved for just one woman. That unique place in all of human history belongs solely to Mary. But we can participate in the ongoing miracle of bearing Jesus to all the world.
Letís review what weíve learned from Mary. Maryís faith was . . .
∑ Begun in her as a young woman
∑ Based upon Godís Word
∑ Bowed to The Will Of God
The Word of God was designed to lead us into an ever deepening relationship with God. So, letís follow in Maryís footsteps of faith.
Have You Begun To
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