Summary: The purpose of this sermon is to motivate the hearers to affirm to others that Mary magnified the Lord and her spirit rejoiced in God her Savior.

14 December 2008

U.S. Army Chaplain (MAJ) Ken Harris

Fortress Chapel

F.O.B. Sykes

Tall-afar, Iraq

BIG IDEA: Mary, under the influence of the Holy Spirit, Magnified the Lord, and her spirit rejoiced in God her Savior.

REFERENCES: Third Sunday of Advent; (JAG) Joy, Admiration, and Gratitude; Proverbs 31:30 (KJV) Favour [is] deceitful, and beauty [is] vain: [but] a woman [that] feareth the LORD, she shall be praised; Psalm 103:1 (KJV) Bless the Lord, O my soul: and all that is within me, (bless) his holy name; Luke 1:42 (KJV); And she spake out with a loud voice, and said, Blessed [art] thou among women, and blessed [is] the fruit of thy womb; Luke 1:46 (ESV) And Mary said, My soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior

1 Samuel 2:1-10 (of Hannah, in Thankfulness for a son); 1 Samuel 1:6 (KJV) And her adversary also provoked her sore, for to make her fret, because the LORD had shut up her womb; Isaiah 7:14 (KJV) the virgin shall conceive and bear a Son;

I. ANNOUNCE THE PERICOPE: Luke 1:42, 46-55 (ESV)

II. READ THE PERICOPE: Luke 1:42, 46-55 (ESV)

III. READ THE TEXT: Luke 1:46 (ESV) And Mary said, My soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior

IV. PURPOSE: To motivate the hearers to affirm to others that Mary magnified the Lord and her spirit rejoiced in God her Savior.

V. SERMONIC THEME: “Blessed and Highly Favored”

VI. INTRODUCTION: Good morning my brothers and sisters. It’s great to see so many of you on this Third Sunday of Advent. As we congregate on this FOB, believers all across the world have started purchasing early plane tickets, Christmas gifts, and toys. Many of our loves ones – and significant others - are preparing to travel great distances to visit family and friends during this Holiday Season.

For “tis the Season to be Jolly”. Emotions are flying high. Tears of Joy, smiles of admiration, and expressions of gratitude will be seen all over the world and across the faces of men, women, boys, and girls of all ages. What an exciting time this is to be serving God and Country in Iraq.

Because of our military presence, and Operation Iraqi Freedom (in this Country), many whom do not celebrate the birth of our Lord and Savior – Jesus Christ - will ironically have opportunities to reflect upon the awesome things that God has done for them this past year, as they embark upon their Islamic New Year on the 29th of this month.

******* Take 5 Beats *******

Move 1: In our Scripture this morning, we find ourselves eavesdropping on one of the most renowned and emotionally charged family visit ever – Mary’s visit to Cousin Elisabeth.

a. For don’t you remember, Mary (the mother of Jesus) had a female cousin by the name of Elisabeth who was much older; and lived in the hill country of Judah.

b. In those days, Mary’s trip from the ghetto of Nazareth to Cousin Elisabeth’s home was about (80 miles) a four to five day journey.

c. But, I can only imagine, if I had a received an Angelic visit of “kindness” from Gabriel the Angel, …

d. … as Mary had, I too could have easily travelled four to five days just thinking on the awesomeness of God … and how she was going to share this news with her fiancé – Joseph.

e. …. - charged with the intense emotions of joy and admiration that Mary must have felt within her soul.

******* Take 5 Beats *******

MOVE 2: Have you ever felt so excited … or confused and shock … that you couldn’t wait to share the news with someone that you knew would be excited for you too?

a. Someone who could probably share some Words of Wisdom regarding your circumstance. Coupled with the fact, that Mary had been informed by the Angel Gabriel that Cousin Elisabeth ….

b. …. who had been trying for years to have a child was also pregnant.

c. Could this be real?

d. Wow! Of all the women of the world – rich and famous, intelligent and beautiful – God chose Mary to be filled with the presence of His Son.

******* Take 5 Beats *******

MOVE 3: For don’t you recall, when Gabriel the Angel showed up in Luke 1:28, he said to her … “Hail, thou that are highly favoured, the Lord is with thee:

a. …. blessed art thou among women …

b. …. and in Luke 1:29 … the Bible shows that Mary was disturbed and troubled by what the angel had said.

c. The word “ANGEL” in the Greek language is an-gel-os’. It means messenger. As Mary was disturbed and troubled by the Words of God’s Messenger.

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