Summary: Mary, mother of Jesus is an example to us all in obedience, prayer and being filled with the Holy Spirit
Luke 1:26-38 Pentecost, Mother’s Day, 2008
Mary, Mother of Jesus
Mother’s day, Pentecost, Global Day of Prayer
Mary mother of Jesus - deified by the Catholics, ignored by the Protestants – both wrong
And the angel came in unto her, and said, Hail, thou that art highly favoured, the Lord is with thee: blessed art thou among women.
The protestants might say “Forgotten are you among women.”
Mary is a great example to us all
The Gospel tells how God sent the great angel Gabriel to this young woman Mary. Angels are terrifying beings – you can tell because every time the show up they have to tell the people to not be afraid. He greets Mary with those now famous words “Hail Mary, full of Grace.” “Greetings, you who are highly favoured! The Lord is with you.”
Mary is shocked that an angel has come to her, but she is also confused by his words. No one had ever said anything like this before – sure they had said nice things, loving things, and they had said horribly mean things. But to call her highly favoured, to say that the Lord is with here – these were words reserved for a queen or a high priest. She is just a teenager – not favoured by anyone.
Then Gabriel continues – you will conceive and give birth to a son and you are to call him Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his father David, and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever; his kingdom will never end.”
Mary may have been shocked that the words were coming out of her mouth, but she asks, “How will this be, since I am a virgin?”
Gabriel is much more gentle with Mary than he is with Zechariah – he struck Zechariah dumb for asking questions! And he Tells Mary that it will be a miracle – God would make a baby without the involvement of a man. To assure her that God can do such things he tells her that Her cousin Elizabeth was already 6 months pregnant in her old age! Because with God, everything is possible.
Mary’s response to the angel is amazing, she says “I am the Lord’s servant, May it be to me according to your word.”
I am amazed at her response because of the risk that it put her in – she was in great danger of being dragged into the street and stoned for adultery, she could be shunned by her family, divorced by Joseph, and left destitute.
We know the end of the story – we know that angel comes to Joseph as well and he takes Mary to be his wife. We know that Mary is not stoned to death, we know that everything works out for about 30 years. But Mary didn’t know that when she agreed to carry Christ. She knew the impossibility, she knew the danger, and she knew the God who was asking her to give up her safety, her plans, and her comfort, all for the sake of bringing the Son of God into the world. And she said yes.
Not an easy life regardless – refugees fleeing Herod
But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart.
Wedding at Cana
Mary is not perfect though:
Every year Jesus’ parents went to Jerusalem for the Festival of the Passover. When he was twelve years old, they went up to the Festival, according to the custom. After the Festival was over, while his parents were returning home, the boy Jesus stayed behind in Jerusalem, but they were unaware of it. Thinking he was in their company, they traveled on for a day. Then they began looking for him among their relatives and friends. When they did not find him, they went back to Jerusalem to look for him. After three days they found him in the temple courts, sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions. Everyone who heard him was amazed at his understanding and his answers. When his parents saw him, they were astonished. His mother said to him, "Son, why have you treated us like this? Your father and I have been anxiously searching for you."