Read Luke 1
In Today's Reading:
Virgin birth of Jesus
foretold; Mary's visit to Elisabeth; Mary's praise to God; birth of John the Baptist
Jesus would have been born with the sinful nature of Adam if Joseph had been His biological father. This would have made Jesus a sinner like all mankind and, thus, unable to be the sinless substitute for our sins. But Gabriel, the angelic messenger of good news, came to Mary and said: Hail, you that are highly favored, the Lord is with you. . . . behold, you shall conceive in your womb, and bring forth a Son, and shall call His Name JESUS. He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest: and the Lord God shall give to Him the throne of His father David. . . . the power of the Highest shall overshadow you . . . that Holy Thing (One) who shall be born of you shall be called the Son of God (Luke 1:28,31-32,35).
Luke records that Mary was deeply troubled at his saying (1:29). Joseph also was troubled when he learned Mary was pregnant, and he considered a private divorce. The angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, Joseph, you son of David, fear not to take to you Mary your wife: for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit. And she shall bring forth a Son, and you shall call His Name JESUS ("Jesus" in Hebrew is the same as "Joshua" meaning "Jehovah (Yahweh) delivered" - Savior): for He shall save His people from their sins (Matthew 1:20-21). How comforting this must have been to Mary. Instead of living under suspicion, there was a miraculous confirmation to Joseph of her virginity.
About 700 years before, Isaiah foretold: Behold, the virgin shall conceive, and bear a Son, and shall call His Name Immanuel (God with us). . . . to us a Child is born . . . the government shall be upon His shoulder: and His Name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, The Mighty God, The Everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace (Isaiah 7:14; 9:6). Jesus' birth revealed His unique nature as both God and Man.
The prophet Micah had foretold that the Messiah, whose goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting (Micah 5:2), would be born in Bethlehem of Judah. This small town, about six miles south of Jerusalem, was called the city of David, for that is where David was born.
Zechariah . . . prophesied, saying, Blessed be the Lord God of Israel; for He has visited and redeemed His people (Luke 1:67-75).
1:40 saluted = greeted; embraced; 1:46 magnify = exalt, praise; 1:54 holpen = come to the help of.
For Luke 1:17: See Mal. 4:6. Luke 1:50: See Psa. 103:17. Luke 1:53: See Psa. 107:9. Luke 1:71: See Psa. 106:10. Luke 1:76: See Mal. 3:1. Luke 1:79: See Isa. 9:1-2; 59:8.
Pray for The International Shortwave Radio Broadcast in honor of Linda Kennon · BP Staff: Letha Hash · Government Officials: Rep. Jeb Bradley (NH), Rep. Robert Borski (PA), Rep. Chris Cannon (UT), Sen. Peter Fitzgerald (IL), and Rep. Hilda Solis (CA) · Country: Ukraine (52 million) east-central Europe · Major languages: Ukrainian and Russian · Religious freedom · 55% Ukrainian/Autocephalous/Old Believers/Armenian Orthodox; 15% Catholic; 3% Protestant; 1% Jews; .5% Muslim · Prayer Suggestion: Kneel in a humble spirit of reverence as you pray to the Lord (I Kings 8:54).
Memory Verse for the Week: I Corinthians 3:17