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Mary Elizabeth Baxter :: Mary’s Song of Praise—Luke 1:39-56

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Before Mary became the wife of Joseph, an intense longing possessed her for communion with Elizabeth. Both these holy women were subjects of peculiar grace; both subjects of a miracle.

Mary arose, and took her journey with haste to the city in the hill country of Judea, where Zacharias and Elizabeth sojourned; and no sooner did Elizabeth hear the salutation of Mary than she was filled with the Holy Ghost, and lifted up her voice with a loud cry, and said:

"Blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb. And whence is this to me, that the mother of my Lord should come to me?"

It was tender grace in our loving God to have given Mary this strong confirmation of the faith which He had imparted to her that she should be the mother of the Messiah. It was more to her, perhaps, than almost anything else that took place between the time of the angel's salutation and the birth of her Divine Son. God knows how to provide


We need not plan and plot and arrange for ourselves. He never leads us through dark valleys or fiery furnaces, but that He is with us; His presence, His rod, His staff, strengthen and comfort us.

The Holy Spirit made Elizabeth a prophetess, and with all the dignity of a God‐filled woman, she declared to Mary:

"Blessed is she that believed: for there shall be a performance of those things which were told her from the Lord."

This was a strength for the suffering which came upon her when Joseph misunderstood and distrusted her, and when, if her heart had not been filled with God, she would have been at the point of despair.

Mary was filled with the Spirit, even as Elizabeth was, for her impulse was to praise God. (Eph 5:18, 5:20.) She sang:

"My soul doth magnify the Lord." No thought of self‐glorification took possession of her heart; no thought of self‐pity; no thought of self‐defence; the Lord was so great in her eyes that herself was out of sight; and in lowliness of heart she said:

"My spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour."

Her Son and yet her Saviour! Mary was conscious, indeed, that she needed One who should save her from her sins. Instead of taking pride in the unparalleled position to which God had called her as the mother of the Messiah, the very position which the Church of Rome gives her, Mary spoke of her low estate.

"He hath looked upon the low estate of His hand‐maiden."

A sinner only, a sinner who needed a Saviour: and thus taking root in grace, she ventures to lift her eyes to see the greatness of her position.

"Behold, from henceforth all generations shall call me blessed." But again it is not in self‐glorification, but in the depth of consciousness how great His grace has been to her.

"He that is mighty hath done to me great things; and Holy is His Name."

And, as though she would guard herself from the thought that there was anything extraordinary in her to commend her, she says:

"His mercy is unto generations and generations on them that fear Him." (R. V.)

Another glance at her God, and she says:

"He hath shewed strength with His arm; He hath scattered the proud in the imagination of their hearts."

How she has learnt through the condescension of God, even to her, that the fond imagination of her nation that the Messiah should first come in earthly glory and deliver them from the Roman yoke, was an imagination which God should setter! God needed no earthly princes:

"He hath put down princes from their thrones, and hath exalted them of low degree."

In her own person and her own laid‐down life and reputation, Mary was a witness beforehand of the death and resurrection of Jesus.

She has found a fulness of satisfaction in her God, and thus she sings:

"The hungry He hath filled with good things; and the rich He hath sent empty away."

And with the thought of Israel in her heart, sacrificed as she was for her people and all her fallen race, she says:

"He hath holpen Israel His servant, that He might remember mercy (as He spake unto our fathers) toward Abraham and his seed for ever."

Three months' stay with Elizabeth strengthened Mary's faith, and then she returned home to go through the furnace which awaited her.

Mary, the Mother of Jesus—Luke 1:26-38 ← Prior Section
Mary and the Child Jesus. Part 1—Luke 2:1-20 & Matthew 2. Next Section →

The Blue Letter Bible ministry and the BLB Institute hold to the historical, conservative Christian faith, which includes a firm belief in the inerrancy of Scripture. Since the text and audio content provided by BLB represent a range of evangelical traditions, all of the ideas and principles conveyed in the resource materials are not necessarily affirmed, in total, by this ministry.


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