As I was attempting to start my bible reading this morning, I was thumbing through some old notes I had taken from studies earlier in the year. I came across something that I had written that I not only thought was profound, but perfect for the Christmas season. I wanted to share it with you.
But when the fullness of time came, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the Law, so that we might recieve the adoption as sons. Galations 4:4-5
The essence of the Christmas story is summed up in the above verse. The Christmas message is the gospel message.
We all know the story.
“Now in the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God to a city in Galilee called Nazareth, to a virgin engaged to a man whose name was Joseph, of the ]descendants of David; and the virgin’s name was Mary. And coming in, he said to her, “Greetings, favored one! The Lord is with you.” But she was very perplexed at this statement, and kept pondering what kind of salutation this was. The angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary; for you have found favor with God. And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall name Him Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High; and the Lord God will give Him the throne of His father David; and He will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and His kingdom will have no end.” Mary said to the angel, “How can this be, since I am a virgin?” The angel answered and said to her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; and for that reason the holy Child shall be called the Son of God. And behold, even your relative Elizabeth has also conceived a son in her old age; and she who was called barren is now in her sixth month. For nothing will be impossible with God.” And Mary said, “Behold, the bondslave of the Lord; may it be done to me according to your word.” And the angel departed from her.” Luke 1:26-38
Christ was to be born in the flesh, born as a man from the seed of a woman. He was a descendant of Abraham, Isaac, Jacob (Israel), and David, according to every prophesy foretold and every promise.
He was born of the seed of the woman. A prophesy fortold from as far back as Genesis 3. He is the seed of the woman who is to crush the head of the serpent. He could not be the son of Adam. Adam had been cursed with death (Gen. 3:19). Every one born of Adam would carry that curse. But not Eve. She did not inherit that curse. That is why Adam named her EVE, “because she was the mother of the LIVING.” The only problem was, all children born unto her would have Adam for a father. All children born of Adam would die. Death would perpetuate through the seed of Adam.
Christ did not have Adam for a father. God was His Father. The curse of Adam was not passed down to Him. He was born of the seed of the woman only. He would be the ONLY one born in such a way.
Mary was of the “house” of David; the lineage of David. And she found favor with God. This word”favor” is the same word translated as grace in the Hebrew. Why was Mary favored? I think it was because Mary’s heart was humble. She had purposed in her heart to be a servant of God long before the angel of God came to her bearing his announcement.
“The Holy Spirit will come upon you and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; and for that reason the holy Child shall be called the Son of God.”
The Greek word translated to “come upon” (eperchomai) could also mean to come in to. The word “overshadow” (episkiazo) means to cast a shade upon, to envelope in a haze of brilliancy, to invest with a preternatural influence.
Think about it this way. The Holy Spirit came upon the whole of Mary. It encompassed her. It covered her, became one with her. Much like a husband would “cover” his wife. Mary became the bondservant of the Lord, humbly offering herself basically as a wife would her husband. She submitted to Him fully, surrendering to His will. She knew exactly what she was doing, what was being asked of her. She was not unmarried and pregnant. She was, in every sense, married to God, in order to bear His Son. In her was the representation of Israel, wed to God in covenental relationship.
Mary’s “blood seal” (the medical term is hymen) of her virginity had not been breached. It remained intact, as she “knew no man“. But God knew her. Not in a physical way, but in a spiritual way. The way God knows us when we accept Him and invite Him into our hearts to dwell as Lord and Savior. He “comes into us”. Mary believed Him. She recieved Him and and came into her and concieved new life, the Life of the Son of God within her.
It is the same thing that happens to us. We believe Him, we recieve Him and the life of the Son of God is manifest within us.
Mary’s blood seal was not broken until the Son of Man EXITED her birth canal. Joseph, obedient to the word of God, entered into marriage covenant with Mary, took her into his house and gave her his name, but he did not “know” her (have sexual relationship with her) until after Christ was born. In a way, Joseph submitted to being Mary’s second husband. Once Mary had bore the Son of God and gave Him the Name above all Names, she was free to bear sons for Joseph’s name. (And I will add that at this point, Mary could no longer be considered a virgin.)
I think the Holy Spirit came upon Mary at the conception of Christ and never left her. I think He stayed with her the whole time of her pregnancy. Why do I say this? Because Luke 1:41 says that the baby in Elizabeth’s womb when she heard Mary’s greeting. She stated “blessed are you among women, AND blessed is the fruit of your womb.”
“May it be done to me according to your Word...”
And the Word of God became flesh and dwelt among us…
In a way that we may not fully ever understand, the Word of God entered Mary’s womb. It joined with her seed. At that momentof conception the Son of God became the Son of Man, the Word made flesh.
The life of the Spirit of God joined the life of the human race, entering into the realm of time and space within the confines of a body of flesh and blood. A body specifically prepared for a specific purpose.
For a perfect sacrifice. The sacrifice to end all other sacrifices.
In my next post, I want to consider what it meant for Christ to be “born under the law” and what that means for us.
Until then, I pray you are blessed and humble before the Lord this holiday season as we are reminded of the miracle of His birth and the gift of eternal life found in His Name! Amen!