In those days Mary arose and went with haste into the hill country, to a town in Judah, and she entered the house of Zechariah and greeted Elizabeth. And when Elizabeth heard the greeting of Mary, the baby leaped in her womb. And Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit, and she exclaimed with a loud cry, “Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb! And why is this granted to me that the mother of my Lord should come to me? For behold, when the sound of your greeting came to my ears, the baby in my womb leaped for joy. And blessed is she who believed that there would be a fulfillment of what was spoken to her from the Lord.”
And Mary said,
“My soul magnifies the Lord,
and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior,
for he has looked on the humble estate of his servant.
For behold, from now on all generations will call me blessed;
for he who is mighty has done great things for me,
and holy is his name.
And his mercy is for those who fear him
from generation to generation.
He has shown strength with his arm;
he has scattered the proud in the thoughts of their hearts;
he has brought down the mighty from their thrones
and exalted those of humble estate;
he has filled the hungry with good things,
and the rich he has sent away empty.
He has helped his servant Israel,
in remembrance of his mercy,
as he spoke to our fathers,
to Abraham and to his offspring forever.”
And Mary remained with her about three months and returned to her home. – Luke 1:39-56 (ESV)
Arthur Just writes:
Jesus is the ultimate reversal of God as the Creator come to his creation as creature. As the Father exalted Jesus in his humility, so now Jesus will exalt those of low estate. Simeon will expand this motif when he says that Jesus “is destined for the fall and resurrection of many in Israel., and a sign to be spoken against” (2:34), and so will Jesus when he cites Psalm 118 to the scribes and chief priests. “What, therefore, is this that is written, ‘The stone that the builders rejected, this has become the head of the corner’? Everyone who falls on that stone will be dashed to pieces; on whomsoever it falls, it will crush him” (20:17-28). “Christ was powerless on the cross: and yet there He performed His mightiest work and conquered sin, death, world, hell, devil, and all evil” This is the language of Jesus’ beatitudes and woes (6:20-26) and the nature of his ministry as he goes to the sick and sinners (tax collectors and prostitutes) instead of the health and self-righteous (Pharisees and chief priests). Jesus’ entire ministry of table fellowship shows the Great Reversal. When he sits down with tax collectors and sinners, with the five thousand, with the Twelve at the Last Supper, with the Emmaus disciples after the resurrection, the presence of God at table with the hungry fills them with good things. Jesus, the humble child in the womb of this humble servant, shows God’s hospitality to the world by coming to those who expect it least and bringing them salvation.
MEMORY WORK – Shorter Catechism Q/A 20
Q. 20. Did God leave all mankind to perish in the estate of sin and misery?
A. God having, out of his mere good pleasure, from all eternity, elected some to everlasting life, did enter into a covenant of grace, to deliver them out of the estate of sin and misery, and to bring them into an estate of salvation by a redeemer.