Sermons

Summary: The extraordinary happened to Mary. Are we ready to experience the extraordinary as well?

First Baptist Church

December 23, 2001

Luke 1:39-55

Mary’s Song

Have you ever had a simple, ordinary day; and something

extraordinary happens? You didn’t expect it, you didn’t plan for

it, in fact, you may not have even wanted it. Sometimes we aren’t

too sure what to make of these events. Maybe it’s a friend who

helps you out when you’re in need, or someone delivers a meal at

just the right moment, or it could be any of 100’s of ways that we

help one another.

Today I want to focus on what happens when the REALLY

EXTRAORDINARY happens in our lives. It occurs when GOD

ENTERS our world. What do we do when that happens? We

can learn a great deal from the life of Mary, especially as she has

an encounter, an extraordinary encounter with the angel, Gabriel.

We don’t know where Mary was or what she was doing when

the Gabriel came to visit her, but we can imagine what that

conversation would have been like —

Into her relatively uncomplicated life comes someone with wings.

Just like the shepherds, Mary becomes afraid. After all, it’s not

an everyday occurrence to have a conversation with an angel.

Gabriel tells Mary she has found favor, "divine favor" with God.

After Mary calms down, Gabriel wastes no time telling her His

good news — "Hey Mary, guess what? You’re going to have a

baby. As a matter of fact, you’re going to have a son, and you’ll

name him Jesus. He will be great, the Son of the Most High.

And the Lord God will give Him the throne of David, forever;

and His kingdom will never end."

Can you imagine receiving that message? Remember, Mary

wasn’t a mature college graduate, she was only a teenager,

probably between 13 to 16 years old. That was the typical age to

get married. And she was engaged to a carpenter named

Joseph.

At this point, Mary may have interrupted Gabriel and said, "Hey

Gabriel, there’s just one small problem, isn’t it true that this great

and wondrous act can’t be accomplished alone." And Gabriel

would agree. And Mary would say, "Then it isn’t going to

happen because I’m a virgin." Now, Gabriel’s response had to

absolutely floor Mary, "Oh, did I forget to mention the child’s

father will be God."

I’m not sure if Mary was smiling or scared out of her mind. She

might have thought she was on the ancient version of "Candid

Camera." But Gabriel’s response in Verse 37, is one of the great

Bible promises. He says, "For nothing is impossible with God."

Isn’t that a great statement? Nothing, nothing is impossible with

God. I like it. That’s one of those statements you have to love.

Mary’s the child of a religious family, engaged to a respectable

member of the community and now she learns she is going to

become pregnant. And the Father is none other than the Holy

Spirit.

But who’s going to believe her story? Her parents? Joseph?

Her friends? She walks into the house and tells her parents,

"Mom, Dad, you may not believe this, but I’m going to have a

baby." Mom’s and dad’s how would you react? Maybe you’re

not too happy about it, but Mary says, "don’t worry, it’ll be okay

because the daddy is God!" Now I’m sure that each parent here

would believe your teen aged daughter if she told you that. Am I

right, should I ask for a show of hands?

Do you see what Mary was up against? Now add to her burden

that being engaged in that society was far more binding than our

modern engagement. Only divorce could break an engagement.

Even though they were not yet married, if either Mary or Joseph

was unfaithful to the other, it would have been adultery,

punishable by death by stoning.

And now she’s pregnant. Talk about a monkey wrench thrown

into the plans! I mean, what would your fiancee say if you came

to him with some story about an angel appearing to you, and

miraculous conception. "There was no man, honey, honest, God

did it." ‘Yea, sure.’

Joseph was going to do the honorable thing for Mary, he was

going to quietly divorce her. He must have cared greatly for her,

because he wanted to be kind to her. Ultimately, Joseph has an

encounter with an angel and comes to accept Mary’s story. And

we know the end of the story . . . they go to Bethlehem and have

a baby.

We think things get convoluted and complicated, busy and

stressful in our lives! Imagine this is suddenly given to you in the

middle of some weekday afternoon while you’re peeling onions,

or whatever you’re doing.

The wonderful part of the story, is Mary’s response to the angel’s

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