“’Don’t be afraid, Mary,’ the angel told her, ‘for you have found favor with God!’” (Luke 1:30 NLT)
Try to imagine being a young girl, likely not more than thirteen, engaged to be married to a man your parents have chosen for you, when an angel suddenly appears to you and announces you’re going to have a baby. It’s no wonder the angel was seeking to dispel her fear. But as the angel continued to explain the purpose of his visit, Mary joyfully responded: “I am the Lord’s servant. May everything you have said about me come true.” (Luke 1:38 NLT)
Only God could conceive such a plan. Identifying and selecting all the right people, at exactly the right time, in just the right way. Then engineering circumstances to put them in the right place at the right time to fulfill words describing their movements and events hundreds of years before the fact. It’s literally unbelievable. Yet, it happened. It’s true. It’s historically verifiable. So, the question remains – WHY?
Have you ever wondered why God chose Mary? Mary’s name in Greek is Maria (Mar-ee’-ah) and literally means “their rebellion.” Please don’t read too much into this, but in my mind, ANYONE who chooses to follow Jesus must be a bit of a “rebel.” How so? Think of all Mary stood to lose by submitting herself to the Lord. Had Joseph, to whom she was engaged, chosen to reveal her pregnancy was not by him, in the eyes of the law of Moses, Mary could have been charged with adultery and killed. Yet, she chose to risk everything to please and honor God, knowing in her spirit that God would protect her.
Mary was a peasant, with no social pedigree, but God saw within her, the heart of a warrior; someone He could trust to care for and love His Son. In her “Magnificat,” Mary’s song of Praise in Luke 1:46-55, we gain insight into why God chose her. “O, how my soul praises the Lord. How my spirit rejoices in God my Savior! For He took notice of His lowly servant girl, and from now on all generations will call me blessed.” Who at thirteen has that kind of spiritual depth and insight except one who has often been in God’s presence, seeking His holy will for her life.
Wait, there’s more. What if Jesus had been born of an influential, royal family? Might we have concluded: “God must be for the ‘haves,’ unlike most of us who have chosen to follow Jesus, who are the ‘have-nots.’” Had Jesus lived among and been born only for the “elite,” as He surely deserved to be, where would that have left the vast majority of humanity?
Aren’t you grateful Jesus loves and was born for everyone! Mary continued in verse 49: “For the Mighty One is holy, and He has done great things for me. He shows mercy from generation to generation to all who fear Him. His mighty arm has done tremendous things! He has scattered the proud and haughty ones. He has brought down princes from their thrones and exalted the humble. He has filled the hungry with good things and sent the rich away with empty hands.”
Does she realize the One whom she exalts and proclaims holy and powerful is the One who now resides in her womb? I suspect she does, but this one thing I know – she was God’s choice, because of her faithfulness and humility. God knew He could trust her with the most precious Gift God could ever give to mankind: HIMSELF.
God revealed to Isaiah the prophet hundreds of years before Jesus was born: “Look! The virgin will conceive a child! She will give birth to a son and will call Him Immanuel (which means ‘God is with us’).”
Blessings, Ed 😊