“But when the right time came, God sent his Son, born of a woman, subject to the law. God sent him to buy freedom for us who were slaves to the law, so that he could adopt us as his very own children.” (Galatians 4:4–5, NLT)
Jesus was born during a time of unique peace for Israel. Peace from enemies, peace from false gods, peace with each other. During this time Israel was oriented towards the temple. Families had established practices that helped turn their minds, hearts, and actions toward God.
The time was right for Jesus to make his arrival. To announce this arrival angels were sent by God to two amazing couples, Zechariah and Elizabeth, and Mary and Joseph. What do we know about these couples? They were righteous. Mary also had a visit from an angel telling here of her special place with the promised Messiah.
“In the sixth month of Elizabeth’s pregnancy, God sent the angel Gabriel to Nazareth, a village in Galilee, to a virgin named Mary. She was engaged to be married to a man named Joseph, a descendant of King David. Gabriel appeared to her and said, “Greetings, favored woman! The Lord is with you!” Confused and disturbed, Mary tried to think what the angel could mean. “Don’t be afraid, Mary,” the angel told her, “for you have found favor with God! You will conceive and give birth to a son, and you will name him Jesus. He will be very great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his ancestor David. And he will reign over Israel forever; his Kingdom will never end!” Mary asked the angel, “But how can this happen? I am a virgin.” The angel replied, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the baby to be born will be holy, and he will be called the Son of God. What’s more, your relative Elizabeth has become pregnant in her old age! People used to say she was barren, but she has conceived a son and is now in her sixth month. For the word of God will never fail.” Mary responded, “I am the Lord’s servant. May everything you have said about me come true.” And then the angel left her.” (Luke 1:26–38, NLT)
Mary’s response was one of humility and submission. How do you need to respond in this way to God?