The Berean Expositor
Volume 51 - Page 71 of 181
Index | Zoom
extraordinary, she looked upon them as a part of a united whole and sought to see how
each fitted in to God's purpose for her. Following the visit to the temple when the Lord
became a son of the law, Luke records she "kept all these sayings in her heart". Here the
word is slightly different, meaning "to have one's eye upon throughout": not one item
escaped her notice. How good it would be for us to pay such close attention to the events
in our lives, carefully looking in every detail for the hand of God!
"Fear not Mary: for thou hast found favour with God" (Luke 1: 30). This is Gabriel's
response to Mary's confusion. Fear (phobeo) while having the usual significance of
"fear, terror, dismay", can also mean "put to flight". Perhaps, in the circumstances, it
conveyed to Mary something of "Do not run away from this". There are circumstances in
the life of every believer, at times, from which he would like to "run away", and it is just
at such times we need to look very carefully to ensure that what we do is in accord with
the will of God. "Thou hast found favour with God", is, literally, "thou hast found grace
with God". Grace is favour to the unworthy, and however good Mary may have been, for
the great task to which she was called neither she, nor any other woman, would have been
"worthy". All, for Mary, was of grace. It might well be said of Mary that she was called
"to the praise of the glory of His grace", as it is said in Ephesians of those, who, united to
Christ, comprise the church which is His Body.
The message the angel brought to Mary was of such a tremendous character, that, but
for Gabriel's reassurance, she might well have wished to "run away from it". Chosen to
be the means whereby God Himself entered into the history of man, to redeem man! But
with the reassurance of God's grace and enablement, Mary's response was "Behold the
handmaid (bond servant) of the Lord; be it unto me according to thy word". How often
we forget "I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me" (Phil. 4: 13).
In her call Mary received the Gospel in miniature:
Thou shalt bring forth a Son: corresponding to Luke's Gospel, behold the Man.
For He came the second Man and last Adam, to be the beginning of a new,
redeemed human race.
His Name shall be called Jesus: the Saviour and Servant, corresponding to
Mark's Gospel, behold the Man.  For He came as Jehovah's Servant,
becoming obedient even unto death.
He shall be great . . . . . the Son of the Highest: corresponding to John's Gospel,
behold your God. For He came to be the source of the new eternal life.
He shall reign: corresponding to Matthew's behold your King. For He came to
be the One in Whom is fulfilled God's purpose that man should have
dominion over the earth, and to be the King of the chosen people.
It is not surprising that Mary's question was "How shall this be?" (Luke 1: 34).
Gabriel told her "Holy Spirit (power from on high) shall come upon thee, and the ability
of the Highest shall overshadow thee" (verse 35). "For with God nothing shall be
impossible" (verse 37).