There was a young pregnant woman. Her dream was for
her baby to grow up with perfect manners.
She went to the doctor and asked him how she could make
her baby nicer, and he told her to sit down for an hour a
day and teach her stomach manners, to prep him or her
before the baby is even born.
So every day for the next 9 months, the woman would sit
quietly and tell her belly, “Be nice to other people, always
put others first, and always say please, and thank you.”
She never missed a day in 9 months, and the due date
came and went, no baby!
The woman continued to wait for her newborn and
continued to teach her belly manners and politeness every
day, but as days, weeks, months, and years passed, the
baby never came!
Finally, 65 years later when the woman finally passed
away in her sleep, the doctors performed an autopsy on
They cut open her belly and found 2 little old men with big
long white beards, continually saying to each other:
“You go first!”
“No, you go first!”
Last week we looked at the miraculous birth of Christ as
the angel came to visit Joseph. This week we are going to
discuss Mary’s encounter with the angel. This week I
want you to ponder the similarities in the messages that
were delivered to them.
Just like the announcement to Joseph the Scripture
points out that Mary was a virgin. It shows up here two
times in v.27.
Yes, Mary was a virgin. She was betrothed to Joseph who
was from the house of David.
Now we see a;
The angel Gabriel greets Mary and tells her she is
favored by God.
Favored means endowed with Grace.
This means she received the grace, not that she is the
giver of grace. Only God can give grace!
God chose Mary to be the mother of Christ.
She didn’t win a contest and she wasn’t perfect or sinless
There is only one without sin, Jesus.
Gabriel continues on with this pleasantry by telling Mary
that God is with her. When the angel was speaking to
Joseph, he told him Jesus would be called Emmanuel
which means God with us.
God is with Mary in a mysterious way. He is about to
conceive in her a child who is God in flesh!
Imagine the closeness she must have felt to the Lord as
she carried Him in her womb for 9 months!
And, here’s the amazing part of Christmas.
Jesus is God with us. We celebrate His birth and the fact
that He is always with us because He will never leave us
or forsake us.
Mary was greatly troubled at the angelic news.
The angel comforted Mary, telling her not to be afraid.
The angel also tells Joseph not to be afraid to take Mary
as his wife.
Mary at this point is just wondering why an angel is
telling her she is favored by God. Gabriel tells her that
she has found favor with God.
Out of all the women in the world, God chose Mary to be
the mother of Jesus. What a gift!
Additionally, the angel told Mary what to name the child.
He also told Joseph that the child should be named Jesus.
Remember, the name Jesus means Yehweh is Salvation.
God makes sure both Mary and Joseph heard the same
information. They each got the big details and they each
got exactly what God needed each of them to hear from
Him to be obedient.
4 very simple words are uttered here by Gabriel.
He Will Be Great –
Do you think Mary understood the Greatness of God?
God is great, not Mary.
God is sinless, not Mary.
God is able to save, not Mary.
I’m not criticizing Mary here, because she was so
incredibly brave and obedient to follow through with this
most mysterious birth.
What we must understand and keep in perspective is that
this Christmas story is all about God and how He uses
obedient people to accomplish His plan.
Gabriel continues on saying that Jesus will be called Son
of the Most High.
The Hebrew word translated most high, is El Elyon.
It means “most high God, sovereign over all”.
Look at how Paul describes Jesus in Romans 1:3-4
“concerning his Son, who was descended from
David according to the flesh and was declared to be
the Son of God in power according to the Spirit of
holiness by his resurrection from the dead, Jesus
Christ our Lord.”
Gabriel also says that Jesus will be given the throne of
David which will never end.
This comes from 2 Samuel 7:12-13 “When your days
are fulfilled and you lie down with your fathers, I
will raise up your offspring after you, who shall
come from your body, and I will establish his
kingdom. He shall build a house for my name, and I
will establish the throne of his kingdom forever.”
God told Nathan to deliver that message to David.
Jesus is going to come from the line of David just as God
said and just as the angel told Mary.
We must not place too much importance on Mary.
We do not worship or pray to Mary.
We worship Christ alone, He is worthy of our worship.
Mary asks Gabriel a clarifying question,
“How will this be, since I am a virgin?”
Then we hear the angel’s;
Here’s how this first Christmas is going to work Mary!
The Holy Spirit is going to come upon you and the power
of the Most High – remember El Elyon (Most High God
sovereign over all) is going to overshadow you.
This is going to be the most incredible birth ever!
God is going to put His Son in Mary so He can be born in
This is the work of God.
If you have trouble understanding it, it’s because we are
finite and God is infinite. We can only understand what
He reveals to us in the proper time.
Gabriel also tells Mary that Jesus is holy.
Jesus is holy, He is set apart for God’s purpose.
Jesus lives His entire life without sin!
That is why the Scripture tells us to be holy as He is holy.
He is also the Son of God.
This is no ordinary child that is coming, He is the Son of
Gabriel also tells Mary of another miracle of grace at that
first Christmas. Her relative Elizabeth is also pregnant.
She was barren and advanced in years, but because of
God’s grace, He has given her a child. And she is already
6 months into the pregnancy.
Maybe the most important thing to remember from all of
today’s verses, is verse 37 “For nothing will be impossible
This verse covers the mysterious conception of a virgin,
The sinlessness of Jesus,
The salvation available by grace through faith.
Mary received the pleasantry.
Mary perceived the perspective.
Mary believed the proclamation.
And she followed through in obedience to the Lord.
Christmas is a celebration of God’s grace.
We are all sinners saved by the grace of God alone.
If you have received God’s grace, He wants you to be
gracious to others.
How can you Share Grace this Christmas?
Remember Grace is unmerited favor.
Grace is showing kindness and generosity to those who
don’t deserve it.
It’s saying a kind word to someone who grumped at you.
It’s buying a coffee for someone who looks cold or
It’s picking out a gift for someone on an angel tree.
Let’s ask God how he wants us to share grace this
If we listen, I’m sure He will give us fresh ideas.