Friday, December 19, 2008

Advent Devotional #20

Calvary Baptist Church Mail - [devAdvent08] DEC. 19 - WHEN GOD MAKES A BIG ANNOUNCEMENT -
Today's devotion from Goshen College:


By Tina Peters, a junior physics major from Yellow Springs,

SCRIPTURE: Luke 1:26-38 (NRSV)
Scroll down for complete Scripture.


The main character in the annunciation to Mary is of
course Mary, but she is not who the story is about. This is
the story of the identity of Jesus. The Angel Gabriel says
to Mary, "And now, you will conceive in your womb and bear a
son, and you will name him Jesus."

In Hebrew, the name Jesus means "God saves." From the very
beginning, with the naming of the child, we learn that Jesus
will save those who depend upon God. This is the plan that
will unfold throughout the Gospels, but it begins here with
a name, Jesus.

With this name comes the titles proclaimed by the angel,
an identity in two parts, the Messiah descended from David
and the Son of the Most High. The title Messiah descended
from David shows his human lineage and is reminiscent of the
promise in II Samuel 7, the passage we read from Tuesday.
Jesus' identity as the Son of the Most High shows his direct
descent from God as explained by the angel in Luke 1:35.
Jesus' identity is in two parts, descendant of David and of
God in Spirit.

Though Luke's main message is Jesus, Mary brings a
valuable lesson as well. When she responds to Gabriel, "Here
am I, the servant of the Lord; let it be with me according
to your word." Mary is not only consenting to be the
physical mother of Jesus, but she also becomes the first to
hear the proclamation of God's will and to do it. Mary's
"fiat," her yes to God, is the first example of Christian
discipleship and is a model for all that follow her.


SCRIPTURE: Luke 1:26-38 (NRSV)
In the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent by God to a
town in Galilee called Nazareth, to a virgin engaged to a
man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David. The
virgin’s name was Mary. And he came to her and said,
'Greetings, favoured one! The Lord is with you.' But she was
much perplexed by his words and pondered what sort of
greeting this might be. The angel said to her, 'Do not be
afraid, Mary, for you have found favour with God. And now,
you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you will
name him Jesus. He will be great, and will be called the Son
of the Most High, and the Lord God will give to him the
throne of his ancestor David. He will reign over the house
of Jacob for ever, and of his kingdom there will be no end.'
Mary said to the angel, 'How can this be, since I am a
virgin?' The angel said to her, 'The Holy Spirit will come
upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow
you; therefore the child to be born will be holy; he will be
called Son of God. And now, your relative Elizabeth in her
old age has also conceived a son; and this is the sixth
month for her who was said to be barren. For nothing will be
impossible with God.' Then Mary said, 'Here am I, the
servant of the Lord; let it be with me according to your
word.' Then the angel departed from her.

View all of this season's devotions at

Goshen College
The views and beliefs expressed in the devotional piece prepared by
each individual reflect their own spiritual growth journey and
thoughts, and while created in a campus environment that encourages
thoughtful questions and reflection on biblical Scripture and
contemporary Christian themes, do not necessarily represent the
official institutional positions of Goshen College or Mennonite Church

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