Jesus Christ – Background Info – Mary
When looking at background information about Jesus Christ, which we will be looking at for the next several days, we cannot leave out a key figure in Jesus’ story – His mother, Mary.
The Birth of Jesus Foretold
We meet Mary on the pages of Scripture as a young virgin girl, a descendant of King David, who will conceive a child via the Holy Spirit. Commentators call this a “virginal conception.”
Our focus passage comes from Luke, chapter 1:26-38:
26 In the sixth month of Elizabeth’s pregnancy, God sent the angel Gabriel to Nazareth, a town in Galilee, 27 to a virgin pledged to be married to a man named Joseph, a descendant of David. The virgin’s name was Mary. 28 The angel went to her and said, “Greetings, you who are highly favored! The Lord is with you.”
29 Mary was greatly troubled at his words and wondered what kind of greeting this might be. 30 But the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary; you have found favor with God. 31 You will conceive and give birth to a son, and you are to call him Jesus. 32 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, 33, and he will reign over Jacob’s descendants forever; his kingdom will never end.”
34 “How will this be,” Mary asked the angel, “since I am a virgin?”
35 The angel answered, “The Holy Spirit will come on you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the holy one to be born will be called[a] the Son of God. 36 Even Elizabeth, your relative, is going to have a child in her old age, and she who was said to be unable to conceive is in her sixth month. 37 For no word from God will ever fail.”
38 “I am the Lord’s servant,” Mary answered. “May your word to me be fulfilled.” Then the angel left her.
I love Mary’s honesty.
Mary asks the angel questions. I imagine most of us would ask questions given the unusual circumstances. However, at the end of their conversation, she shows her faithfulness in God by replying, “I am the Lord’s servant. May it be to me as you have said.”
Wow, what a brave thing to say!
Mary’s just been told she is going to give birth to a child who will be great and called the Son of the Most High God! How’s that for a game-changer?
If we turn to Luke, Chapter 1, and start reading verse 46, we read Mary’s song. She speaks of her soul glorifying the Lord, and her spirit rejoices in the Lord. Mary’s words are beautiful.
There’s a Christmas song that goes something like this:
“Mary, did you know that your baby boy would someday walk on water? Mary, did you know that your baby boy would save our sons and daughters? Did you know that your baby boy is heaven’s perfect lamb? And this sleepy child you’re holding is the great I AM…..”
God can use anyone.
What a powerful example of how God can use someone who least expects it to do something so magnificent as this – to bring the Savior, God’s Son Jesus, into the world.
What a job, and indeed an honor for Mary. Carrying God’s Son was a huge responsibility. Mary would be walking by faith each day. I imagine her getting bigger and bigger and realizing more every day; she would be giving birth to the Savior of the world.
We can bring God glory too.
We have not been asked to bring the Savior into the world. However, God has asked us to do other things to bring Him glory. Have we been obedient to God’s calling on our lives?
God, thank you for choosing Mary. Mary is an excellent example of how to be obedient and faithful. She wasn’t fancy or famous, but she was the one you chose. Thank you for her faithfulness. In Jesus’ name, I pray, Amen.
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