At the Heart of Christmas season is a very simple promise, the eternal hope for all mankind brought into the world. This promise addresses three very simple questions.
- Who will be born?
- How will you know?
- Why will He be born?
Each one of us has critics in our lives and hopefully, we also have those that know us well and love us. And then we have God; God knows ALL there is to know about us-the good, the bad, and the ugly-yet He loves us more than we can possibly imagine and He also has a good plan for our lives.
God is always reaching out to us. Even if we already know Christ, He wants to take us to another level. He's given us a promise to never leave or forsake us, and he also promises to give us a future and a hope. He will never revoke His promise. We may reject it, but His promise is always extended to us, no matter what is going on in our lives.
In today's passage, God promises to send us a Savior because He loves us and wants to redeem us. As you read through Luke 1, you may wonder, "How can a virgin be pregnant?" But remember that with God, nothing is impossible. If God has called you to do something, He will not tell you how he's going to do it. He will only tell you as much as He thinks you need to know to get you moving. If He challenges you in something, hold on to His promise. When you worry, you are showing Him that you don't believe He can do anything.
Beginning in verse 26, the angel Gabriel is sent by God to tell Mary about His plan for her life.
1. Who will be born? Jesus, The Savior of the world, Christ the Lord
Though it must have been incredible for Mary to believe, Gabriel tells her that she who has never been with a man will soon bear a son. Not only that, but he announces that the son she delivers will eventually deliver her, for she has been chosen to be the mother of God's son.
2. How will you know? Humility - Jesus will be born of a virgin
How can a baby be born of a virgin? God does many things that we don't understand. This had never been done before, and it will probably never be done again, but that doesn't mean it didn't happen.
In many ways, the Old Testament is a prelude to the New Testament, and one of the ways that God reveals His power in the Old Testament is by giving sons to women who have been barren (e.g. Sarah, Isaac's wife, Jacob's wife Rebecca, Samson's mother, and Samuel's mother Hannah). Each of these sons had a very special role in the kingdom of God, just as Jesus does in the New Testament.
Note that Mary accepts God's will for her in verse 38 by saying, "Let it be to me according to your word." Mary certainly must have endured much criticism, drama, and defamation of character, but she accepted God's plan for her. When God asks you to follow Him, often times this includes sacrifice and enduring criticism and misunderstanding. God wants to hear us say, "Your will be done, not mine."
And as Hannah prayed, "O Lord Almighty, if you will only look upon your servant's misery and remember me, and not forget your servant but give her a son, then I will give him to the Lord for all the days of his life," we too should pray with God's glory in mind. When God grants you a gift, He does so for His glory and purposes, not yours. Sometimes you receive glory when you walk with Him, but it's all about Him.
3. Why was He Born? To reign over an eternal kingdom
"He will be great, and will be called the Son of the Highest; and the Lord God will give Him the throne of His father David. And He will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of His kingdom there will be no end." Luke 1:32-33
Jesus was born to be our King. Though our government is pulling away from God and the Bible, the concept of government comes from the Bible; the notion was conceived by God. However, in Christ's kingdom, He will rule according to righteousness, not vote, not politics, not opinions. He is the King of Kings, the Ruler of all Rulers. Though earthly kings are known by their palaces, robes, wealth, and armies, Jesus wants to rule in your heart, according to love and gentleness.