Mary: A Beautiful Woman
God loves beauty, surrounds Himself with beauty, and wants us to allow His beauty to be upon us. In the prayer of Moses the man who knew God face-to-face we find these words, listen to Moses’ prayer at the very end of Psalm 90:
Psalm 90:17 (NKJV)“And let the beauty of the LORD our God be upon us, And establish the work of our hands for us; Yes, establish the work of our hands.”
This Christmas season is a time we remember one of the clearest portraits of what a beautiful saint looks like. May I introduce you (or reintroduce you) to Mary, the mother of Jesus! Probably the most recognized but least known members of the cast of Christmas. As we open to Luke 1, let me ask you:
· Who was chosen out of all the women in the whole world to raise God's Son? The answer is: Mary
· Without exception who is probably the most beloved and best-known woman in the world? The answer is: Mary
· Who is presented as the most honored woman in the Bible? The answer is: Mary
· Who may very well be the greatest living, breathing example of Proverbs 31 in ordinary everyday life? The answer is: Mary (and that is probably the most times her name has ever been said aloud in most Protestant churches!)
~Mentioned only 20x in the Bible, Mary’s life is such a portrait of godliness, humility and yielded-ness.
~Mary stands in Scriptures as an example to all of us of devotion and faithfulness.
~Her strengths and struggles are all laid out in the Bible.
Staying Beautiful in God's Sight
Of all the writers of Scripture it is Luke who highlights Mary with 12 of the 20 verses that name her are in Luke and one is in Acts. So 65% of all that we have comes to us through Luke.
As we read through Mary’s life, starting in Luke 1:26, we will find out how God’s beauty is reflected from Mary’s life. First:
Mary Listened to the Word from God. (Luke 1:26-28)
Luke 1:26-28 (NKJV) “Now in the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent by God to a city of Galilee named Nazareth, 27 to a virgin betrothed to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David. The virgin’s name was Mary. 28 And having come in, the angel said to her, “Rejoice, highly favored one, the Lord is with you; blessed are you among women!”
Either we hear God’s Word as just the word of men or as it truly is, the Word of God that effectually works in us who receive it by faith.
Mary joined so many others that the Scriptures describe as being sought by God: Adam and Eve in the Garden, Noah in the Pre-Flood world, Abram in Ur, Saul on the road to Damascus. Always remember that God is in the people seeking business. Salvation is of the Lord and it is God who seeks us, He initiates salvation for, Salvation is of the Lord (Jonah 2:9).
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