Saturday, December 09, 2006

The Christmas Story - The Annunciation

Many years after Isaiah saw the vision concerning the coming king. . . . . . . .

God sent the angel Gabriel to a virgin who lived in Nazareth, a town in Galilee. She was engaged to marry a man named Joseph from the family of David. Her name was Mary. The angel came to her and said, "Greetings! The Lord has blessed you and is with you."

But Mary was confused by what the angel said. Mary wondered, "What does this mean?"

The angel said to her, "Don't be afraid, Mary, because God is pleased with you. Listen! You will become pregnant. You will give birth to a son, and you will name him Jesus. He will be great, and people will call him the Son of the Most High. The Lord God, will give him the throne of King David, his ancestor. He will rule over the people of Jacob forever. His kingdom will never end."

Mary said to the angel, "How will this happen? I am a virgin!"

The angel said to Mary, "The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will cover you. The baby will be holy. He will be called the Son of God. The angel told her that her cousin Elizabeth was pregnant even though she was very old, for nothing is impossible with God.

Mary said, "Behold, I am the servant girl of the Lord. Let this happen to me as you say!" Then the angel went away."

All of this happened to fulfill the prophecy of Isaiah many, many years earlier.

By saying yes to the Lord’s call, Mary was putting herself in great danger. She was engaged to Joseph and he could have accused her of being unfaithful. He could have even put had her put to death. Mary put all her trust in God.

Joseph was a very good man and he decided he would not have Mary punished in public. He would send her quietly away.

An angel of God visited Joseph in a dream that night and explained that Mary had not been unfaithful. She was pregnant by the Holy Spirit. So Joseph took Mary to his home and cared for her.

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