Growing with God: A daily devotional with Tonia Slimm.
Luke 1:46-55 (NIV)
And Mary said: “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. He has performed mighty deeds with his arm; he has scattered those who are proud in their inmost thoughts. He has brought down rulers from their thrones but has lifted up the humble. He has filled the hungry with good things but has sent the rich away empty. He has helped his servant Israel, remembering to be merciful to Abraham and his descendants forever, just as he promised our ancestors.”
Luke 1:46-55 (MSG)
And Mary said, “I’m bursting with God-news; I’m dancing the song of my Savior God. God took one good look at me, and look what happened—I’m the most fortunate woman on earth! What God has done for me will never be forgotten, the God whose very name is holy, set apart from all others. His mercy flows in wave after wave on those who are in awe before him. He bared his arm and showed his strength, scattered the bluffing braggarts. He knocked tyrants off their high horses, pulled victims out of the mud. The starving poor sat down to a banquet; the callous rich were left out in the cold. He embraced his chosen child, Israel; he remembered and piled on the mercies, piled them high.
It’s exactly what he promised, beginning with Abraham and right up to now.”
And Mary said, “My soul magnifies and exalts the Lord, And my spirit has rejoiced in God my Savior. “For He has looked [with loving care] on the humble state of His maidservant; for behold, from now on all generations will count me blessed and happy and favored by God! “For He who is mighty has done great things for me; and holy is His name [to be worshiped in His purity, majesty, and glory]. “And His mercy is upon generation after generation Toward those who [stand in great awe of God and] fear Him. from generation to generation. “He has done mighty deeds with His [powerful] arm; He has scattered those who were proud in the thoughts of their heart. “He has brought down rulers from their thrones, And exalted those who were humble. “He has filled the hungry with good things; And sent the rich away empty-handed. “He has helped His servant Israel, In remembrance of His mercy, just as He promised to our fathers, to Abraham and to his descendants forever.” -AMPLIFIED
If you have ever wondered what was going through Mary’s mind after her encounter with the Messenger Gabriel; we can know from reading this song of praise that she sang to God. To some people the placing of this song in Luke, when Mary has gone to visit Elizabeth, may appear strange. Let us consider though that Mary has probably been holding in her news for quite some time.
We do not know exactly how much time had passed from Gabriel’s visit until Mary went to see Elizabeth, but it appears that it happened immediately following. Scripture tells us only this, “At that time Mary got ready and hurried to a town in the hill country of Judea, where she entered Zechariah’s home and greeted Elizabeth.” Luke 1:39-40 (NIV)
Upon Mary’s arrival Luke gives us a few pieces of information that definitely confirm Mary’s news, even before she has had a chance to deliver it. We find these words in Luke 1:41-45 “When Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, the baby leaped in her womb, and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit. In a loud voice she exclaimed: “Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the child you will bear! But why am I so favored, that the mother of my Lord should come to me? As soon as the sound of your greeting reached my ears, the baby in my womb leaped for joy. Blessed is she who has believed that the Lord would fulfill his promises to her!” (NIV)
In the Latin Vulgate our text is entitled the “Magnificat”. We find Mary’s opening words to this song beginning with, “My soul magnifies and exalts the Lord”. Mary’s song is all about magnifying and glorifying Her Lord and Savior. In her song we find fifteen definite references to Old Testament prophecy. Mary knew the Scriptures and she realized what Gabriel’s good news meant not only to herself, but to her people. In fact, Mary makes mention to the certainty that God has, “embraced his chosen child, Israel; he remembered and piled on the mercies, piled them high. It’s exactly what he promised, beginning with Abraham and right up to now.”
Mary’s joy in serving her Lord is undeniably evident in her song. Her response to Gabriel when he had given her the news was, “I am the Lord’s servant, may your word to me be fulfilled.” Mary’s attitude and acclamation had remained steadfast and strong. Her greatest desire was to please her Lord. May we too have her attitude when serving our Lord and Savior.
Lord, may I have the right attitude when it comes to serving you; allow me to be a pleasing, sweet, smelling sacrifice. Mary was such a wonderful example in her response to you. You called her to do great things; that would definitely stretch her beyond her comfort zone. She was not afraid to step out and step out joyfully to do great things for you. Help me to have the same attitude, Lord. Help me to keep my focus firmly fixed on you. Your mercy and love is so wonderful, Heavenly Father, and my soul will magnify and exalt you. All praise, glory and honor belong to you; for you are the One who has made relationship with you possible. Glory to your Name!