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Christmas Praise: Mary

December 19, 2011

“And Mary said, My soul doth magnify the Lord,  And my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour. For he hath regarded the low estate of his handmaiden: for, behold, from henceforth all generations shall call me blessed. For he that is mighty hath done to me great things; and holy is his name. And his mercy is on them that fear him from generation to generation. He hath shewed strength with his arm; he hath scattered the proud in the imagination of their hearts. He hath put down the mighty from their seats, and exalted them of low degree. He hath filled the hungry with good things; and the rich he hath sent empty away. He hath holpen his servant Israel, in remembrance of his mercy; As he spake to our fathers, to Abraham, and to his seed for ever.”
Luke 1:46-55

In their accounts of Christ’s birth, Matthew and Luke give us glimpses of several different people and their responses to the coming of the promised Christ. Most of the responses are ones of praise, which provide for us wonderful illustration of how we should respond to the celebration of Christ’s birth this Christmas. The first one, chronologically, is that of Mary.  In her moment of praise, she puts in words some of the wonder she is feeling at the awesome announcement that she is to give birth to the Messiah. Her first response is magnifying the Lord.  In her heart and mind, God has suddenly become huge.  Though He was apparently important before, now He is even greater. In her praise Mary mentions two major reasons for her magnification of God.  First is His might that is able to cause a virgin to bear a child, that is able to overthrow the mighty men of this world and that accomplishes His promises to His people.  Second is His mercy which cares for His people, which helps them in their distress and which provides for them in their need.  May we also magnify the Lord this Christmas, praising Him for His might and His mercy.

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