October 01, 2006

Mary, the Virgin Mother

Luke 1:26-38

"You will ... give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus." Luke 1:31


Many churches go to extremes in the way they deal with Mary. It seems they either worship her or ignore her. Notice, however, that whenever the Bible mentions her, Jesus is at the center.

God announced through an angel that Mary would become the mother of Jesus, the promised Messiah. Though perplexed, Mary submitted to God's will and sang, "My soul glorifies the Lord and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior" (Luke 1:46-47). When Jesus was born, shepherds came searching for the baby because angels had announced his birth, and then they spread the word to others as "Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart" (Luke 2:19).

When he was 12 and his parents thought he was missing, Jesus stunned his mother by asking, "Didn't you know I had to be in my Father's house?" (Luke 2:49). And some years later, when Mary implied he should do something about wine that had run out at a wedding party, Jesus redefined their relationship, saying, "Why do you involve me? ... My time has not yet come" (John 2:4). Jesus' mother also watched him dying on the cross, and on that day he arranged for one of his disciples to care for her (John 19:26-27).

In all these situations, as the Bible portrays her, Mary serves as a great example of submission to God's will.

Spirit of God, fill us with Mary-like submission to do your will. Thank you for her example. Humble us to be your faithful servants always. For Jesus' sake, Amen.

About the author — Roger S. Greenway

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