I. IN THE SIXTH MONTH THE ANGEL GABRIEL WAS SENT FROM GOD UNTO A CITY IN GALILEE NAMED NAZARETH.
A. This would be the six months after he had visited Zacharias.
B. Sent from God. Gabriel had announced himself to Zacharias as the angel who stands in the presence of God, evidently waiting to receive orders from God.
C. A city of Galilee, named Nazareth.
1. The area of Galilee was looked upon with contempt by those in Jerusalem.
2. The city of Nazareth had an especially bad reputation. Nathaniel said, "Can any good thing come out of Nazareth?"
3. The angel came not to the religious center of the nation, not to the capital, but to the obscure little village of Nazareth with it's bad reputation to announce to a young girl God's choice of His human instrument to bring His Son into the world.
II. TO A VIRGIN ESPOUSED TO A MAN WHOSE NAME WAS JOSEPH, OF THE HOUSE OF DAVID. THE VIRGIN'S NAME WAS MARY.
A. The period of espousal was one year. Marriage was by parental arrangement, a boy or girl could be engaged by the time they were five years old.
1. One year before they were married they entered into the espousal, a period when they were as committed as if married, in fact to break off an espousal took a writing of divorcement. Should the groom die during the year of espousal, the girl would be called a widow who is a virgin.
2. Joseph according to the genealogy of Matthew was a descendant of David and thus of the royal family.
a. According the prophesies the Messiah had to be from the seed of David, but through Joseph Jesus could never claim the throne of David. According to Matthew, Joseph was a descendant of Jeconias who was cut off by God from any of his descendants ever occupying the throne. Jer. 20:30.
b. Matthew also tells us of Joseph's dilemma and anguish upon the discovery of Mary's pregnancy, until assured by the angel of the work of the Holy Spirit.
c. We know little more of Joseph than the fact that he was a carpenter.
B. The virgin's name was Mary.
1. Mary was also a descendant of David, but not through the family of Jeconias. Thus, through Mary also from the seed of David, Jesus could make claim to the throne.
a. In Paul's introduction to the book to the Romans, he speaks of Jesus Christ made of the seed of David according to the scriptures.
b. From the promises, He had to be the seed of the woman, and from the seed of David.
c. The seed of the woman would of necessity be a virgin birth.
d. God had promised through Isa. that a virgin would conceive and bear a Son and call His name Immanuel.
III. AND HAVING COME IN THE ANGEL SAID TO HER "REJOICE HIGHLY FAVORED ONE, THE LORD IS WITH YOU, BLESSED ARE YOU AMONG WOMEN."
A. "Highly favored one."
No doubt Mary had the greatest honor and privilege any woman could ever have,
to be chosen as God's instrument to bring the Savior into the world.
1. I wonder how many young devout girls in Israel hoped and prayed that they would be chosen for that honor?
2. Belief among the Druze that the messiah will be born of a man thus many with large baggy pockets on the front of their pants to catch the child when it is born.
B. Mary's response was a quiet wondering of what this was all about. What kind of greeting was this?
C. The angel then continued, "Do not be afraid Mary, for you have found favor with God." The Greek word translated favor is the Greek word karin usually translated grace.
1. The privilege bestowed upon her was not a reward for her purity or righteousness. It was a gift of God's grace.
2. She was no doubt a deeply spiritual young girl but she was the choice of grace.
3. God has also chosen that His Son should tabernacle within us, not for righteousness, but by His grace.
4. The word in Greek is para, along side of God.
D. You will conceive in your womb and bring forth a Son, and call His name Jesus.
1. Jesus is a Greek form of the Hebrew name Joshua. This was the name given by Moses to his servant His parents had named him Hoshea which in Hebrew means salvation, but Moses added God's name to His calling him Joho shua, which was later contracted to Joshua which means Jehovah is salvation.
2. The angel told Joseph not to be afraid to take Mary as his wife. The Son was to be named Jesus for He shall save His people from their sins.
3. He will be great, and be called the Son of the Highest.
a. The Jews today state the reason for disclaiming Jesus as the Messiah is for His claims to being the Son of God.
b. They are looking for a man to save them, like Moses was just a man.
c. Isa. said "His name shall be called wonderful, counselor, the Mighty God, the Everlasting Father."
4. The Lord God shall give to Him the throne of His Father David.
a. In Isa. 9
the prophet continued upon the throne of David to order and to establish it in righteousness from henceforth even forever.
5. He shall rule over the house of Jacob forever, and of His Kingdom their shall be no end.
IV. MARY'S QUESTION, "HOW CAN THIS BE, SEEING I KNOW NOT A MAN" SHE WAS AFFIRMING HER VIRGINITY.
A. Hers was not a question born of unbelief as was that of Zacharias, but an inguiry of method.
B. The angel answered, "The Holy Spirit will come upon you and the power of the Highest will overshadow you, so that Holy One that shall be born of you will be called the Son of God."
C. Man is born with a sinful nature, Jesus was born without a sinful nature, thus the sinful nature of man must be passed down through the Father.
1. Romans 8
said that Jesus came in likeness of sinful flesh.
2. God made Him to be sin for us who knew no sin.
3. I am told that the genes that make up the pattern for the blood in an infant come through the 23 chromosomes of the father.
D. "For with God nothing shall be impossible."
1. As an example of that truth, your aged relative Elizabeth is in the sixth month of her pregnancy.
2. The virgin birth of Jesus will only be a problem to those who have a limited concept of God.
V. MARY'S BEAUTIFUL SINFUL NATURE, THUS THE SINFUL NATURE OF MAN MUST BE PASSED DOWN THROUGH THE FATHER.