Summary: Elizabeth had the perfect words to encouage the heart of Mary. This message is a look at Mary’s response and praise, Mary felt: safe, special, sanctified, strong, successful, satisfied, and significant!
Title: "What Mary Knew?"
Introduction: Can you imagine how full of desperation that Mary must have felt? When the angel mentioned to her that her aged cousin, Elizabeth, was also with child, Mary eagerly hasted on a journey to see her. At this point, it is doubtful that she had confided in anyone about her status of pregnancy. It would take the encouragement of Elizabeth’s gracious words to open her up in this wonderful recorded text of Mary’s song of praise and prayer that has become known as "Mary’s Magnificat."
Note that Elizabeth did not put Mary through a grueling test to ascertain the purity of her condition. God had prepared her heart with the perfect words of encouragement that Mary so desperately needed to hear.
Question: Are you an encouragement to others when they come into your presence?
Let us consider how God used Elizabeth to make Mary feel:
(Luke 1:46 KJV) And Mary said, My soul doth magnify the Lord,
(Luke 1:47 KJV) And my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour
1. Mary felt Safe.
Elizabeth was married to the priest Zacharias. The last place that I would think that Mary would have found "safety" would be in the home of the very person who had the priestly role of condemning unmarried mothers! But God had already muted Zacharias and softened the heart of Elizabeth for her coming. Mary soul was magnifying the Lord and in her spirit, Mary was rejoicing in the God of her salvation. She felt safe.
(Luke 1:48 KJV) For he hath regarded the low estate of his handmaiden: for, behold, from henceforth all generations shall call me blessed.
2. Mary felt Special.
Although there would those in her present generation that might condemn her for her untimely pregnancy, she knew that forth coming generations would become convinced of the truth. Jesus would be born of a virgin. She would be the mother of the Christ Child. Mary felt special.
(Luke 1:49 KJV) For he that is mighty hath done to me great things; and holy is his name.
3. Mary felt Sanctified.
Let me be blunt. Mary was not a whore. She was "holy!" A Holy God had placed his "Holy Son" within her womb. Mary felt holy.
(Luke 1:50 KJV) And his mercy is on them that fear him from generation to generation.
(Luke 1:51 KJV) He hath showed strength with his arm; he hath scattered the proud in the imagination of their hearts.
4. Mary felt Strong.
I do not know how old Mary was at this time. The consensus of opinion seems to be about fifteen. Can you imagine how weak and helpless a fifteen year old unmarried pregnant girl must have felt in this city that was not her own? Yet in the text, Mary talks about the "strength" of God’s arm. Her strength was in the Lord. Mary felt strong.
(Luke 1:52 KJV) He hath put down the mighty from their seats, and exalted them of low degree.
5. Mary felt Successful.
There was no one of any lower degree than Mary. But through the gift of Christ, she had been exalted. Success is when we reach our potential in Christ Jesus. Jesus was growing inside of the very person of Mary. Mary felt successful.