Summary: This sermon looks at the human side of Mary. 1. Mary WONDERED at God’s Wisdom 2. Mary was PERPLEXED by God’s Plan 3. Mary SUBMITTED to God’s Sovereignty
If you have been to various churches then you know that giving announcements in church is a regular part of the service. Sometimes announcements get twisted around or come out the wrong way. Let me give you some examples of what I am talking about:
*The sermon this morning: "Jesus Walks on the Water".
The sermon next week: "Searching for Jesus"
*"Ladies, don't forget the rummage sale. It's a chance to get rid of those things not worth keeping around the house. Don't forget your husbands."
*Bertha Belch, (a missionary from Africa) will be speaking tonight at Calvary Memorial Church. Come tonight and hear Bertha Belch all the way from Africa.
*Irving Benson and Jessie Carter were married on October 24th in the church. So ends a friendship that began in their school days.
*For those of you who have children and don't know it, we have a nursery downstairs.
This morning we’re going to look at another kind of announcement – it’s an announcement from God. Unlike our announcements – God doesn’t make any mistakes – He doesn’t make any bloopers. His announcements are always amazing. His announcements are always spectacular. Let’s look at God’s announcement. It can be found in Luke chapter one:
Now in the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God to a city in Galilee called Nazareth, to a virgin engaged to a man whose name was Joseph, of the descendants of David; and the virgin's name was Mary. And coming in, he said to her, "Greetings, favored one! The Lord is with you." But she was very perplexed at this statement, and kept pondering what kind of salutation this was. The angel said to her, "Do not be afraid, Mary; for you have found favor with God. "And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall name Him Jesus. "He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High; and the Lord God will give Him the throne of His father David; and He will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and His kingdom will have no end." Mary said to the angel, "How can this be, since I am a virgin?" The angel answered and said to her, "The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; and for that reason the holy Child shall be called the Son of God. "And behold, even your relative Elizabeth has also conceived a son in her old age; and she who was called barren is now in her sixth month. "For nothing will be impossible with God." And Mary said, "Behold, the bond-slave of the Lord; may it be done to me according to your word." And the angel departed from her.
Luke 1:26-38 (NASB)
Folks let me start out by saying – many times we have the wrong view of the characters that we read about in the Bible. We somehow have the opinion that the people we read about were superhuman. That somehow they had extraordinary powers – that none of us could ever obtain. Folks let me tell you a fact.
Fact: God uses ordinary people to do extraordinary things.
We need to understand that before Gabriel came to Mary – she really wasn’t anything spectacular. She was an ordinary young Jewish girl living in a small Jewish town. From all outward appearances she was just like all the other young girls in her town. I’m sure Mary would have been perfectly happy to be a normal Jewish girl – living a normal Jewish life. She had the same dreams that all the other young girls had – fall in love – settle down – get married – have a family. But God steps in and everything changes. Then the angel Gabriel shows up and brings her an amazing announcement.
She responded in three ways.
1. Mary WONDERED at God’s Wisdom
The Bible says that Gabriel said to her:
"Greetings, favored one! The Lord is with you."
Luke 1:26-29 (NASB)
Mary was amazed at what Gabriel said to her. She was thinking: “Favored One!” Who is this “favored one”? I’m not anything special. Surely it is not me he is talking about. I am just an ordinary girl – in an ordinary town – and I want an ordinary life.”
Some translations say that Mary was troubled – some say she was perplexed – some say that she was confused. But over all – Mary stands here wondering at God’s wisdom. But Gabriel told her not to fear – for God is going to do something special in your life.
Did you know that the same two statements that God told Mary are the same two statements that God tells his followers today? We are his “favored ones” and “the Lord is with us”.