Mary was like everyone else. There was nothing that would indicate her as being special in the eyes of the people at the time. Mary started out as any human being. She came from the tribe of Judah and more specifically, the royal family of David. She lived an ordinary life in the city of Nazareth, which is in northern Israel. To a regular person on the street, Mary would have seemed like just an ordinary face in the crowd.
Yes, there seemed like there was nothing extraordinary about Mary. But she was special to the heavenly Father. The Father chose Mary to play a unique role in completing his promise to send the world a Savior. She was to be the mother of his Son Jesus.
Why was Mary chosen by God for this very special role? Was it because Mary was born without sin and never did anything wrong in the eyes of God? No, the Scriptures never say that Mary was without sin. Mary, being true human, was like everyone else in that she “had fallen short of the glory of God.” However, Mary had faith in the promises of God. She trusted that God would someday send the Savior as promised. Mary found favor in God’s eyes because she believed he would someday send the Savior to bring forgiveness.
That is exactly what God gave the world through Mary. God promised that the Savior would come from the family of David. Mary, who was from the line of David, was chosen to be the mother of God’s Son. The angel Gabriel brought the news to Mary. Even though she was a virgin, she would become pregnant through the miraculous working of the Spirit.
This miraculous conception meant the world was given the Savior it needed. Jesus, Mary’s Son, is the true human needed to live a perfect life and give that life in payment for the sins of the world. At the same time Jesus, being God’s Son, was able to make the sacrifice needed to count for the sins of the whole world.
It is this sacrifice that brought both pain and blessing to Mary. Mary experienced the horror that every parent dreads. She witnessed the death of her child. It was a cruel death that He was given. He was tortured, ridiculed and killed before her eyes at the foot of the cross. Yet it was all done for her blessing and ours as well. For by Jesus’ death her sins and the sins of the world were paid. And the following Sunday morning, Jesus rose from the dead. How Mary’s heart must have sung for joy! Her Son died to take away the sins of the world and rose to assure us that we have forgiveness of all our sins and the gift of eternal life. On the day her Son Jesus rose, she must have felt the same joy she did when the angel Gabriel announced Jesus’ birth to her. She must have sung the same song of praise she did when she visited her cousin Elizabeth. She sang:
“My soul glorifies the Lord
and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior,
for he has been mindful
of the humble state of his servant.
From now on all generations will call me blessed,
for the Mighty One has done great things for me–
holy is his name.
His mercy extends to those who fear him,
from generation to generation.” (Luke 1:46-50)
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