The first two chapters of Luke include four songs or poems. Each of these announcements are spoken by a different person. Mary, the mother of Jesus, in a joyful statement proclaims what’s come to be known as The Magnificat (“my soul magnifies the Lord”). Zechariah, John the Baptist’s father, who is mentioned in the second half of Luke chapter 1, is the mute priest whose tongue is loosed to speak The Benedictus (“Blessed be the Lord God of Israel”). The angels in Luke Chapter 2 lit up the night sky outside Bethlehem and proclaimed The Gloria to some very frightened shepherds (“Glory to God in the highest”). And, finally, old, devout Simeon, waiting patiently for the Lord, takes the Christ child in his arms and speaks the words of the Nunc Dimittis (“Lord, now you are letting your servant depart in peace”).
These incredible proclamations being in Luke 1:28 when the angel Gabriel delivers some great news to Mary and highlights just how favored she is in verses 31-33. She’s going to get pregnant and have a son. Out of desperation to understand the reality of this birth Mary questions the pregnancy based on the fact that she is a virgin. Gabriel explains that there is going to be something different about this child. She is commanded to name her son Jesus, which means “the Lord is salvation.” He will be the Son of the Most High--God’s very Son as explained in verse 35. And he will sit on the throne of King David and he will reign over Israel. And his Kingdom will last forever. Mary in this amazing scene discovers that she’s going to give birth to her deliverer. The one that she will deliver into the world will be the favored one who will deliver the brokenness of humanity into heaven.
God’s plan for delivering broken humanity is connected with the reality of the virgin birth of God’s son. Like Mary you may have difficulty understanding the virgin birth, however God provides a response that establishes the basis of this important Christian doctrine that should not be overlooked. In verse 37 the angel Gabriel convinced of God’s ultimate power and authority says; “For nothing will be impossible with God.”
A simple message of the Christmas story is that God is all powerful. Place your hope this Christmas season in the reality of God’s awesome power and praise Him for His mighty deeds! I pray that your heart finds peace in His strength.
Our Pastor writes most of the blog posts we publish, however, occasionally some of our other church leadership (some staff, some volunteer) who also contribute to the New Life blog.