His Story Is Christmas – Mary’s Song

Luke 1:35-55 (KJV) And the angel answered and said unto her, The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God. 36 And, behold, thy cousin Elisabeth, she hath also conceived a son in her old age: and this is the sixth month with her, who was called barren. 37 For with God nothing shall be impossible. 38 And Mary said, Behold the handmaid of the Lord; be it unto me according to thy word. And the angel departed from her. 39 And Mary arose in those days, and went into the hill country with haste, into a city of Juda; 40 And entered into the house of Zacharias, and saluted Elisabeth. 41 And it came to pass, that, when Elisabeth heard the salutation of Mary, the babe leaped in her womb; and Elisabeth was filled with the Holy Ghost: 42 And she spake out with a loud voice, and said, Blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb. 43 And whence is this to me, that the mother of my Lord should come to me? 44 For, lo, as soon as the voice of thy salutation sounded in mine ears, the babe leaped in my womb for joy. 45 And blessed is she that believed: for there shall be a performance of those things which were told her from the Lord. 46 And Mary said, My soul doth magnify the Lord, 47 And my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour. 48 For he hath regarded the low estate of his handmaiden: for, behold, from henceforth all generations shall call me blessed. 49 For he that is mighty hath done to me great things; and holy is his name. 50 And his mercy is on them that fear him from generation to generation. 51 He hath shewed strength with his arm; he hath scattered the proud in the imagination of their hearts. 52 He hath put down the mighty from their seats, and exalted them of low degree. 53 He hath filled the hungry with good things; and the rich he hath sent empty away. 54 He hath helped his servant Israel, in remembrance of his mercy; 55 As he spake to our fathers, to Abraham, and to his seed for ever.

We live in a strange but lost world. On hearing of the recent San Bernardino, California terrorist attack that took 14 lives and wounded 20 one of our Senators said:

Our prayers are with the victims, their families, and the first responders in San Bernardino who willingly go into harm’s way to save others.”

Under a front page banner that read GOD ISN’T FIXING THIS the New York Daily News wrote:

Prayers aren’t working. … after yet another mass shooting in America, GOP Presidential contenders were conspicuously silent on the issue of gun control. Instead the Republicans were preaching about prayer.”

How sad that is, and foolish. The problem facing our country today isn’t guns. It is people whose hearts are mired in sin. It is people who aren’t praying, who think that yet another human solution will correct the blackness of the lost human soul. The headlines of the newspapers shouldn’t be “GOD ISN’T FIXING THIS”, but instead may I suggest the headlines should read:

WE CONTINUE TO REJECT THE LORD,
AND REAP WHAT WE HAVE SOWN”

The Bible tells us that “the human heart is the most deceitful of all things and desperately wicked. Who really knows how bad it is? I the Lord search all hearts and examine secret motives. I give all people their due rewards according to what their actions deserve.” (Jeremiah 17:10 NLT)

As we come into the holiday season we call “Christmas” our misguided leaders continue to reject the Solution to our national problems. People need the Lord. They need Jesus.

In our text today Mary was told of two miraculous births – one was hers, the other birth was with her aged cousin Elisabeth. Mary was a virgin, engaged to a carpenter named Joseph. They had not yet finalized their marriage, but the Angel Gabriel came to her with some startling news.

You might be a virgin, Mary, but you’re also a mom!

The Arch-Angel Gabriel told her:

Luke 1:35 (KJV) … The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God.

The Holy Ghost or Holy Spirit was going to come to Mary and create in her the humanity of the Lord Jesus Christ. Perfect God was going to come to an imperfect world. “That holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called The Son of God”. Notice the King James Translators use “that holy thing”. The Greek here is an ADJECTIVE ἅγιος hagios (hag’-ee-os) which means “holy, sacred, set apart”. This isn’t a NOUN but an ADJECTIVE. The Angel told Mary:

Holy Shall Be Born Of You

This God coming into Humanity is not called a Holy THING – but HOLY. Holy God would become Sinless Man. God would do something utterly unexpected. Man could not fix himself, so God became Holy Man to be the means to fix us all. Poet George MacDonald wrote:

They all were looking for a king

To slay their foes and lift them high:

Thou cam’st, a little baby thing

That made a woman cry.

My how or when Thou wilt not heed,

But come down Thine own secret stair,

That Thou mayst answer all my need –

Yes, every bygone prayer.

1 Holy Shall Be Born Of Mary, And His Herald Shall Be Born Of Elisabeth. After telling Mary that the Son of God was coming into humanity through her, Gabriel went on to say that …

Luke 1:36 And, behold, thy cousin Elisabeth, she hath also conceived a son in her old age: and this is the sixth month with her, who was called barren. 37 For with God nothing shall be impossible. 38 And Mary said, Behold the handmaid of the Lord; be it unto me according to thy word. And the angel departed from her.

God was going to perform two miraculous births so that man could be born again, which is in itself a supernatural birth. God can fix things. He can change man. But we must submit. As Mary said “Behold the handmaid of the Lord” we must SURRENDER to God to be fixed!

For years mankind had searched to become better, but year after year became worst. Our Associational Missionary Dale Ledbetter recently remarked on the destitute state of our nation, that America has “lost its moral compass”. I agree, it has. When our Senators mock God in the press and blame Him for the quicksand we have put ourselves into then we have fallen far indeed. Yet as Brother Dale said, Christ was born into the same type of world, a world with a broken moral compass.

There is no king in America today, for we as a nation have rejected God our King. There was no king in Rome yesterday, for they as a nation rejected God our King. Every man does what is right in their own eyes (Judges 17:6) then blames God for what we have done.

We need the Holy.

We need the Christ Child!

Mary told the Angel “I am the handmaiden of the Lord – I am willing”. She was available to God. The Angel left and Mary did as any of us would have done. The Angel told her that Elisabeth was in her old age having a child – that she was already 6 months into that pregnancy. So Mary went to see her cousin. Mary wanted to see this miracle child, and share the miracle that she now carried inside.

a Faith Never Sits Still And Vegetates. Faith MOVES! When the Angel Gabriel departed what happened? We read:

Luke 1:39 (KJV) And Mary AROSE in those days, and WENT INTO THE HILL country WITH HASTE, into a city of Juda;

Mary heard a beautiful thing. She heard that Elisabeth was having a child, a forerunner to the Savior within her. She didn’t wait until she started showing in her first trimester. She got up. She took a difficult journey. She wasn’t headed to the flatlands, but to the HILL country. Faith goes where God sends. Faith moves to the mountains, it doesn’t sit on it’s duff and wait for the mountain to move.

Faith stirs.
Faith stretches.
Faith strains.

She went by herself WITH HASTE. She didn’t wait for someone else to get up a crew to go see Elisabeth. She got up and went. Some people say they have faith, but barely come to Church. Some people say they have faith but live as if they are Atheists, as if God is not watching their every action. God hears what you say. James tells us:

James 2:17-24 (KJV) Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone. 18 Yea, a man may say, Thou hast faith, and I have works: shew me thy faith without thy works, and I will shew thee my faith by my works. 19 Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble. 20 But wilt thou know, O vain man, that faith without works is dead? 21 Was not Abraham our father justified by works, when he had offered Isaac his son upon the altar? 22 Seest thou how faith wrought with his works, and by works was faith made perfect? 23 And the scripture was fulfilled which saith, Abraham believed God, and it was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of God. 24 Ye see then how that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only.

The DEVILS have more faith than many today who PROFESS that they are Christian. If you are CHRISTian then CHRIST is in you. You love. You love God. You love others. You move when God says. Mary went with haste.

b Faith Is Not Asleep In The Pew Or in The Pulpit. Faith WORSHIPS The Lord! The Bible tells us that Mary ….

Luke 1:40-43 (KJV) … entered into the house of Zacharias, and saluted Elisabeth. 41 And it came to pass, that, when Elisabeth heard the salutation of Mary, the babe leaped in her womb; and Elisabeth was filled with the Holy Ghost: 42 And she spake out with a loud voice, and said, Blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb. 43 And whence is this to me, that the mother of my Lord should come to me?

Jesus Christ could not have been more than a few days conceived at this point. The Holy Ghost overshadowed Mary, and her virgin egg was growing into the Son of God. How big is a baby at this point? How big the fetus? Tiny. The size of a period at the end of a sentence. The fertilized egg begins to divide into groups of cells. There are no distinguishing features to that future child as of yet. The fetal size is not measurable by our standards until after the fourth week of pregnancy. Mary walks into Elisabeth’s home, and as soon as she says “Hello” tiny John the Baptist – six months old still in his mother’s womb – leaps! Elisabeth is filled with the Holy Ghost – the Spirit of God overflows her life. And immediately Elisabeth begins to worship God. How does she worship the Lord?

She starts by showing LOVE to Mary.

Mary is nervous, perhaps a little uncertain. When God came to Moses and told him that he was going to lead Israel out of Egypt, Moses showed his nervousness by making excuses. He was, after all, 80 years old and returning to a Palace that was hostile to him. Mary, I’m sure, was nervous. Virgin pregnancy? If the wrong person heard this she could easily have been brought before the Priests of Israel and stoned to death for alleged adultery (see Leviticus 20:10). She was not in the wrong, but who would believe her? As she entered the home Elisabeth – filled with the Spirit of God – cries out “Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb!” Elisabeth is not worshiping Mary – she is encouraging Mary in her call. We are to encourage one another in our calls. Then Elisabeth says “Why should the mother of my Lord come to me?”.

Elisabeth LOWERS herself. You cannot worship God in a proud and uplifted way. True worship is humble. The worshiper lowers themselves before God. So often today people come to Church, sit down, stick their nose up in the air and wait expectantly, thinking “What’s in it for me?”

The world often revolves around the American and the American Christian – or so we think. Elisabeth humbled herself, and worshiped the Lord her Maker! Elisabeth went on to say:

Luke 1:44 For, lo, as soon as the voice of thy salutation sounded in mine ears, the babe leaped in my womb for joy. 45 And blessed is she that believed: for there shall be a performance of those things which were told her from the Lord.

Even little John the Baptist worshiped when Jesus – still just a few cells in His earth Mother’s belly – came into the room. If a BABY can worship while still in its mother’s womb, then when Christians come together we ought to have a CELEBRATION. Elisabeth confirmed Mary’s call. Notice particularly her words of Mary:

Blessed is she that believed!

How did Elisabeth know that Mary believed? Because Mary moved. She went with haste. She didn’t sit on her faith but rode her faith toward her Lord!

2 Mary’s Song Of Praise Grew Out Of Mary’s Faith. This portion of Scripture is often called “Mary’s Song” or “The Magnificat” (Which means “My Soul Magnifies”). The books The History and Use of Hymns and Hymn Tunes David R. Breed, 2009 & Favorite Hymns Marjorie Reeves, 2006 states that the following Scriptures were one of the eight most ancient Christian hymns. I do not know if Mary was singing as she made her statement – but her heart was filled with joy! She said:

Luke 1:46-47 And Mary said, My soul doth magnify the Lord, 47 And my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour.

Illustrate The country music singer & song writer Travis Tritt in an interview revealed a little known secret from his early years. When he was first starting out he had to play his music in road houses and other “undesirable” areas. Once when a brawl broke out and the fights started raging Travis said:

“Just when [things] started getting out of hand, when bikers were reaching for their pool cues and rednecks were heading for the gun rack, I’d start playing ‘Silent Night.’ It could be the middle of July; I didn’t care.”

At that point the fights would stop. Travis said “”Sometimes they’d even start crying, standing there watching me sweat and play Christmas carols.”

The reason this worked is because Silent Night speaks of the Christ, that great Love that God has shown to us. After Mary heard Elisabeth and considered what God was doing through her she didn’t BRAG, she WORSHIPED and PRAISED the Lord!

a Mary Praised God With All She Had. Mary was raised in a poor but God fearing home. She didn’t have much to give God, but she gave God what she had.

She gave herself.

Mary honored the Lord with her BODY. Our text says “And MARY SAID”. You ARE what you DO. A lot of people SAY they are Christian, but their actions do not back up their words. MARY SAID. She spoke her faith. She was NOT ASHAMED. When God blesses you, you are NOT ASHAMED of what He has given.

Adam and Eve were NAKED in the Garden of Eden,
and were NOT ASHAMED (Genesis 2:25)

King David was NOT ASHAMED of God’s statutes and laws (Psalm 119:80)

The Apostle Paul was NOT ASHAMED of the Gospel of Christ (Romans 1:16)

The Christian is NOT ASHAMED to proclaim Christ and His Word

Jesus declared Mark 8:38 (KJV) Whosoever therefore shall be ashamed of me and of my words in this adulterous and sinful generation; of him also shall the Son of man be ashamed, when he cometh in the glory of his Father with the holy angels.

Mary was not ashamed of what God was doing in her. She praised God! She said:

Luke 1:46-47 … My soul doth magnify the Lord, 47 And my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour.

Body, soul, and spirit she praised the Lord. Mary magnified God, but did not magnify HERSELF. The essence of true Christianity is HUMILITY OF SPIRIT. Mary said:

Luke 1:48-49 For {God} hath regarded the LOW estate of his handmaiden: for, behold, from henceforth all generations shall call me blessed. 49 For he that is mighty hath done to me great things; and holy is his name.

God was glorified in Mary’s words. She took no credit to herself – she was the MOON to God the SUN. She reflected HIS glory, and took no credit to herself. She was blessed because GOD BLESSED HER. She was not better than anyone else. She was available, and God her Benefactor.

Has not God done the same thing to us who are Christians? We do not deserve to be called “Children of the Most High”. We deserve nothing. But because of Jesus, because God became man, then Man could through Christ become a son of God.

Hebrews 2:9-13 But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honor; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man. 10 For it became him, for whom are all things, and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons unto glory, to make the captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings. 11 For both he that sanctifieth and they who are sanctified are all of one: for which cause he is not ashamed to call them brethren, 12 Saying, I will declare thy name unto my brethren, in the midst of the church will I sing praise unto thee. 13 And again, I will put my trust in him. And again, Behold I and the children which God hath given me.

We did not deserve that Child of Mary’s. We do not deserve the life that God gave for us. But because He came through the Virgin, because He was born to die, because He gave Himself for us … because of Him God is not ashamed of us.

b God Gives Himself To The Humble, Not The Proud. We read:

Luke 1:50-55 And his mercy is on them that fear him from generation to generation. 51 He hath shewed strength with his arm; he hath scattered the proud in the imagination of their hearts. 52 He hath put down the mighty from their seats, and exalted them of low degree. 53 He hath filled the hungry with good things; and the rich he hath sent empty away. 54 He hath helped his servant Israel, in remembrance of his mercy; 55 As he spake to our fathers, to Abraham, and to his seed for ever.

If I were to summarize the last part of this song it would be thus:

God blesses only those who HUMBLE themselves before Him.

Jesus came for whosoever will humble themselves to Him and His Gospel. He “scatters the proud” and “puts down the mighty”. Those who self sufficient, “rich in themselves” God “sends away empty”. But those who humbly follow Him will be blessed.

A husband wanted to give his wife the perfect gift for Christmas, so he bought her the finest diamond ring he could afford. He knew she would guess what the gift was if he just wrapped the jewelry box and put it under the tree, so he put her gift inside a box of cereal and wrapped it up. The Monday before Christmas while her husband was at work she picked up the box that held her gift. Shaking it she heard what sounded like cereal. Quickly tearing the box open she saw “Kellogg’s Corn Flakes” and she went livid. She took it outside, tossed it in the trash, and went inside fuming and thinking what she was going to tell her husband when he got home. Outside she heard the sound of the garbage truck making it’s pickup.

She had no idea what she had done.

Pride has robbed many from the glorious gift of the Christ Child. Mary humbly followed God and was blessed with His mercy and grace. This is the message of Christmas. His story is Christmas. Receive Him and believe Him. Glorify Him with all that God has given you.

May God touch your hearts with His Word.

About bibleteacherorg

A searching pastor, I am looking for a people who love the Lord and love one another. I am looking for the Church. Most of what I see today is not the Church, but clubs, where members sit in padded pews and drink deeply of self. I am looking for a people willing to be righteous not self righteous, serving not served, In short, I am looking and praying for a people who want to change the world by willingly and willfully following Jesus Christ. I hope I find this people before it's too late.
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