Monthly Archives: December 2010

Luke 1:26-38 Gabriel’s Message to Mary 3: Gabriel’s Explanation of the Incarnation

See the skit: The Called

It’s a good day for a new beginning. Time to get back to the basics, to set aside the sins of the past and walk forward in obedience to Christ. How many of you have noticed that obedience isn’t always easy?

How many of you have noticed that obeying the Lord comes at a cost?

I recently communicated with a man who was pondering what to do since some of the things his boss asked him to do were “a little off key.” As Christians we need to be prepared to be obedient to the Lord first and human authority second. But obeying God rather than man is going to have consequences. And not all of those consequences will be pleasant. But as you consider the difficulty caused by obedience, consider also the consequences of disobedience to the Lord. I would much rather fall into the hands of man or demon than the hands of God. They may strip away comfort,

Luke 1:26-38 Gabriel’s Message to Mary 2: Gabriel’s Message

This week as you remember Christmas you might consider having a listen to Handel’s Messiah. I listen to it every year. For me one of the most memorable parts in Handel’s Messiah takes place in the early oratorio “For unto us a child is born” The words go on to quote from Isaiah (inserting a long pause between wonderful counselor which isn’t exactly there)
“And his name shall be called: Wonderful – Counselor, Almighty God, the Everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace!” The names of the Messiah all point not only to who is is, but what he shall do!

A Greeting of Grace

Last time we talked about Gabriel being sent (1:26) and now he arrives. The flow is important. First we learn of Gabriel’s assignment. Now we learn of Gabriel’s Message. It starts with a Greeting of Grace.

His two word introduction begins with a greeting which is literally "Rejoice!" Most English Bibles

Luke 1:26-38 Gabriel’s Message to Mary 1: Gabriel’s Assignment

When Zacharias questioned what the angel was telling him in Luke 1:18 we discovered that the reliability of the message is wrapped up in the credibility of the messenger. Now beginning in Luke 1:26-38 we are about to find out why that is so vital. Because if the message brought to Zacharias by the angel was fantastic, then even more so the message which Gabriel brings to Mary.

This passage which is a dialog between Gabriel and Mary usually ends up with Mary getting all of the attention, but Gabriel serves as the bookends for the passage, both starting and stopping it. The reason this matters is that the gospel is initiated in heaven – not on earth. Mary is not the creator of the child, God is. We receive the gospel but we neither initiate nor create it. The gospel is God’s work in us, just as the infant Jesus – the fetus is God’s work in Mary. Mary had no more power to create Christ inside of her than we do! Christ in us like Christ in