Fourth Sunday in Advent
December 20, 2020icon-download-pdf-wp

Gospel: Luke 1:26-38
Epistle: Romans 16:25-27
Lesson: 2 Samuel 7:1-11, 16
Psalm: Psalm 89:1-5 (19-29)

 

CLB Pastors Network – Dr. David Veum

If God was going to deal with sin, he had to touch it. He had to cross the barrier from the holy to the unholy, from the divine to the human. He did this in answer to Mary’s question: How can this be? So delicately he said through the angel, “The Holy Spirit will overshadow you and the power of the most high will come upon you.” He was born of Mary because another human needed take my sin and die for me. Jesus was virgin born because only God could bear and die for the sin of the whole world.

People’s Bible Commentary – Luke

“Six months have passed since Gabriel’s announcement to Zechariah. Now the Lord sends his messenger on another mission. This time Gabriel goes not to the holy city of Jerusalem but to a humble town in Galilee; not to a temple but to a house; not to an aged man but to a young and vibrant maiden. The promised child to Zechariah and Elizabeth was in answer to many prayers; the promised child to Mary was a total and complete surprise. A child born of a virgin—here is something altogether new. Not an old couple finally having their first son, but a maiden bearing an infant conceived by the Holy Spirit—this is surely the greater miracle!

Mary was pledged to be married to Joseph, a descendant of David. She herself also came from that royal family; her son would be given the throne of his father David. But more than that—the promised child would be Son of the Most High, the Son of God. His kingdom would never end.

Hard to believe? Without a doubt! Yet the faith of Mary shines brightly in contrast to the doubts of the priest Zechariah: ‘I am the Lord’s servant…. May it be to me as you have said.’ Zechariah was also a servant; he did his duty in the temple. Mary’s service was special and unique: to be the mother of God.”

Prange, V.H., People’s Bible Commentary – Luke. St. Louis, MO: Concordia Publishing House, 1992.

The NIV Application Commentary – Luke

“Mary’s response reveals her character. ‘Let it be to me as you have said’ (v.38). This was no simple matter. She is being asked to bear a child as a virgin without being married. In standing up for God and his power, she will probably become the object of much doubt and ridicule. But Mary knows she is God’s servant, so she will allow God to work through her as he wills. He can place her in whatever difficult circumstances he desires, for she knows that God is with her.

Again Luke has not only explained how the plan of God is advanced by telling the details of the birth announcement, he also has revealed the character of those surrounding the birth of these two great men of God. All the figures involved are examples of spirituality as they respond to what God is doing among them. In the midst of the cosmic story, there are human stories. The narrative wants the reader to sense both levels of the story.”

Bock, D.L., The NIV Application Commentary – Luke. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Publishing House, 1996.

Christmas Day
Third Sunday in Advent