This is mothers’ day. And there is a lot to say about the mother of Jesus. Martin Luther called her the best among us. That is not her own doing. It was her Son.
Jesus changes us. He brings the Word of God to us and brings us to faith. And what we see in Mary is the excellent work of Jesus. Let’s look at how that happened. (Luke 1:26-55)
When the angel Gabriel came to her and said, “Greetings, O favored one, the Lord is with you”, (Luke 1:28) how did Mary respond? She was greatly troubled at the greeting. (v. 29) That was her confession that she had done nothing to deserve such an honor. Mary proclaims that everything is by the grace of God.
Then Gabriel began to explain. She would conceive, bear a son and call His name Jesus. He would be king, Son of David and Son of the Most High, and would reign forever. (vv. 30-33) How did Mary respond? She confessed that she did not understand, “How will this be since I am a virgin?” (v. 34)
Once again Gabriel explained. The Holy Spirit would act, it would be God’s doing, and the child would be holy, the Son of God. How did Mary respond? She believed, and she “spoke the ‘Amen.’” Faith is nothing else than to speak the “Amen” to God’s words.
In our confirmation book we have a definition of what it means when we say the "Amen."
1 We acknowledge the truth. “What has been spoken is God’s Word and it is true.” Mary acknowledged the truth of the angel’s words.
2 We confess the goodness. “It is true for me, and yes, that is good.” Mary certainly confessed the goodness of what God was doing.
3 We speak our hope. “I will see God’s truth filling all creation.” Mary would then wait and hope for the day when she would see all of God’s promises fulfilled in her Son. All the promises are fulfilled and will be fulfilled in Jesus. We also hope and wait to see the glorious fulfillment.
4 We worship. “Praise God for His love, His wonderful words, and His mighty acts.” Mary responds in worship to God for His mercy, His grace, and His blessings.
There in Nazareth that day, Jesus did His work of being the Savior. By His coming into the world and by His incarnation within her womb He created faith in Mary. She is the first of the New Testament Church, responding to the presence of Jesus in her life and soul.
And Jesus then teaches and guides her in the song of praise. We call it the Magnificat. Here are some of the passages:
“My soul magnifies the Lord”
“my spirit rejoices in God my Savior”
“He who is mighty has done great things for me”
“Holy is His name”
“His mercy is for those who fear Him from generation to generation.”
“He has filled the hungry with good things”
“He has helped His servant Israel, in remembrance of His mercy.”
Mary “Acknowledges,” “Confesses,” “Waits and Hopes”;
And her "Amen" must finish with Worship and Praise.
There were a lot of things to happen. The wonder of Jesus’ birth. Shepherds and Wise Men. The prophecies of grief spoken by Simeon. -- In each of these Mary speaks the Amen deep in her heart. Acknowledge, Confess, Wait & Hope, Worship.
Then there was the flight into Egypt, the return, and the time when Jesus was 12 years old and stayed behind in the temple. Again, Mary spoke the "Amen" deep in her soul.
Acknowledge, Confess, Wait & Hope, Worship.
And then there was the arrest, the crucifixion, the tomb, and Jesus rising from the dead. And again, the "Amen" deep, deep in the soul mingled with the grief and resounding in the amazing joy.
Acknowledge, Confess, Wait & Hope, and Worship.
Worship and rejoice without end; worship and rejoice for all eternity. Christ is Risen!
Lord Jesus, let me hold Your words in my soul, acknowledging the truth. Lead me Confessing the goodness of all that You have done. Set my eyes on all that is to come when You return in glory. And through everything that happens, through all the joys and sorrows, let me worship, because You are my Lord, My Savior, My Brother, and my Friend. Amen.