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Shavua Tov

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  • Daniel Botkin

Mary, Mother of Messiah


The Roman Catholic Church elevates Mary to the status of Regina Caeli, “Queen of heaven,” and declares her to be the Mediatrix, the Mediator between man and her Son, Jesus Christ, Yeshua the Messiah. This extreme elevation of Mary by the Roman Catholic Church is not supported by the Bible. Therefore Bible believers, in an effort to distance themselves from Roman Catholicism, sometimes go to the opposite extreme and miss the fact that Mary was indeed “blessed among women” (Luke 1:28). Although Mary was and is human, she has indeed been elevated by God to a status far above all other women.

By her godly character, Mary is an example for both Catholics and Protestants, males and females. Read her conversation with the angel Gabriel in Luke 1:26-38. In that passage you will see Mary’s humility, her availability to God, her acceptance of God’s will, and her faith in God’s promise. Those qualities are far more important than an academic education, natural talents and abilities, worldly position and influence, or money. If a person has all those things but lacks the qualities Mary had, that person is of little use to God. In Mary God found someone He could use to bring His Son into the world.

The Bible talks about “bearing the reproach of Christ.” Perhaps more than anyone else, Mary bore the reproach of Christ, and she did it before Christ was born. She got pregnant out of wedlock, while espoused to Joseph. By bearing the Christ Child out of wedlock, Mary bore the reproach of Christ.

There is no record in the New Testament of Mary trying to explain to Joseph or to her parents how she got pregnant. The angel of the Lord had to explain the situation to Joseph in a dream, so it appears that Mary did not try to explain her pregnancy to Joseph or to her parents.

Why did Mary not explain to Joseph and to her parents what had happened? Did she think they would not believe her?

Perhaps that was the reason for Mary’s silence. But perhaps Mary was simply overwhelmed by the enormity of what was happening. Perhaps she was so overwhelmed that she felt no explanation was necessary at that time. Mary had no need to defend herself. God was obviously in control, and He would vindicate Mary.

Even though I am not a Roman Catholic nor a woman, I sometimes think of what it must have been like for Mary to find out she was going to be the mother of the Messiah. Mary did not know all the details of what her Son would do, but she surely understood some things about the promised Messiah. For 4,000 years humanity had been waiting for the fulfillment of the promise God gave in the Garden in Genesis 3:15, the promise of a coming Redeemer who would be born of a woman and undo the works of the devil. Now Mary was informed by the angel Gabriel that she was the woman chosen by God to give birth to “the Son of the Highest.”

From the time of that revelation, Mary must have been overwhelmed with the wonder and the marvel of what was happening. She must have been so overwhelmed that she felt no need to explain her situation to anyone. God was in control, and God would take care of Mary’s reputation.

Only one thing mattered to Mary now. The Messiah had been conceived in her womb by the Holy Spirit, and that Child was growing inside her. Now the primary purpose of Mary’s existence on earth was to give birth to this Child and raise Him to adulthood.

Mary alone, of all the women throughout history, had that privilege of conceiving the Messiah and of bearing Him and raising Him to adulthood. What an honor and a privilege!

Yet each one of us, whether male or female, has a similar privilege. Just as Mary received the Divine seed of the Messiah in her womb, so we can each receive the Divine seed of the Messiah in our heart. Our receiving of the Divine seed gives us power to become sons of God, as it is written, “But as many as received Him, to them gave He power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on His name” (John 1:12).

This receiving of the Divine seed is what the Bible calls being born again or born from above. When Yeshua/Jesus spoke to Nicodemus about the new birth, Nicodemus asked, “How can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter the second time into his mother’s womb, and be born? ... How can these things be?” (John 3:4 & 9).

Two times Nicodemus asked “How?” Yeshua explained that the new birth comes as the result of the Holy Spirit moving.

Some thirty years earlier, Mary had asked Gabriel “How?”

“How shall this be, seeing I know not a man?” (Luke 1:34).

Just as Yeshua would explain to Nicodemus, so Gabriel explained to Mary that this birth would come through the moving of the Holy Spirit. “And the angel answered and said unto her, The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God” (Luke 1:38).

What Mary experienced when the Messiah was supernaturally conceived in her womb is what we each experience when the Messiah is supernaturally conceived in our heart. The Holy Ghost comes upon us, the power of the Highest overshadows us, and that holy thing which is born of us is the Son of God, “Christ in you, the hope of glory” (Col. 1:27).

When we receive the Messiah in our heart, a Divine conception takes place. Like a pregnant mother, we have a new purpose and new priorities. We nurture, cherish, and protect this new life in our heart. We prepare ourselves for the arrival of the Person inside us.

When the Galatians lost sight of the supremacy of Christ, Paul wrote to them, “My little children, of whom I travail in birth again until Christ be formed in you” (Gal. 5:19).

Just as Mary carried and cherished this most precious seed in her womb, so we carry and cherish the seed of Messiah in our heart and let Christ be formed in us.

In the song O Little Town of Bethlehem, one line says: “Cast out our sin and enter in, be born in us today.”

The birth of the Messiah has nothing to do with decorated trees, Santa Claus, or any of the other white-washed pagan traditions that the world associates with the birth of Christ. The birth of Christ is about the Holy Ghost coming upon us, and the power of the Highest overshadowing us, so that the Son of God can be conceived in our heart, formed in us, and manifested to the world through us.

In Mary God found someone He could use to bring His Son into the world. He is still looking for people He can use to bring the manifestation of His Son into the world.


| DB

 

Image: Mother Miriam by Daniel Joseph from his Monochromatic Monotheistic Gallery. See this and all Daniel’s art pieces on his art website, DanielBotkin.com.

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