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Lesson # Luke 1:39-45
Study Material - Luke 1:39-45
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39 Now at this time Mary arose and went with haste to the hill country, to a city of Judah, 40 and entered the house of Zacharias and greeted Elizabeth. 41 And it came about that when Elizabeth heard Mary's greeting, the baby leaped in her womb; and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit. 42 And she cried out with a loud voice, and said, 'Blessed among women are you, and blessed is the fruit of your womb! 43 'And how has it happened to me, that the mother of my Lord should come to me? 44 'For behold, when the sound of your greeting reached my ears, the baby leaped in my womb for joy. 45 'And blessed is she who believed that there would be a fulfillment of what had been spoken to her by the Lord.'
Now Mary lived in Nazareth in Galilee in the tribe of Naphtali, the fifth son of Jacob. But Jesus is to come from the line of Judah, which is to the south and where Elizabeth is living. In vs. 45, Elizabeth makes the comment the promise which the angel made 'would be' fulfilled. The word 'esomai' means in the future. So the pregnancy probably did not occur until Mary had arrived at the home of Elizabeth, which was in Judah. This is consistent with the prophecy that God would be born of a virgin, and from the tribe of Judah. Nothing is mentioned of Joseph traveling along and probably he did not go along. Remember in Matthew it was discovered that she was with child. And this was after Mary's trip to visit Elizabeth. Mary was there for three months visiting, and it is probably at the beginning of this time that the pregnancy occurred.
So apart from Joseph's presence, apart from the tribe of Naphtali, and inside a city in Judah, though the city was not named, it is likely Hebron, because it was a designated city of the Levites and Zacharias probably lived there. But that is only speculation on my part. Other reasons for thinking that Hebron is the likely city is that it was there that circumcision was instituted with Abraham. It was there that the promise was given to Isaac, Abraham was given his first land there, David his first crown. Of the patriarchs, Abraham and Sarah, Isaac and Rebecca, Jacob and Leah, were buried there. One can only wonder if Adam and Eve are buried there as well. Wouldn't that make a great movie for 'Indiana Jones' fans!!
So there is much originating in Hebron, and this all prevents Satan from crying foul and trying to discredit the prophecies regarding Christ. Why else would a girl who is promised to be wed go off to visit Elizabeth for three months. See vs. 56.
Elizabeth expressed knowledge about the angels communication and before Mary had arrived. Who told Elizabeth? Mary most likely did not tell anyone of the communication with the angel. Who would believe her? Since the angel told Mary about Elizabeth, he probably told Elizabeth about Mary's coming condition. As Mary entered Elizabeth's home and as Elizabeth greeted her with the knowledge of her coming pregnancy, this would undoubtedly raise the excitement level of both women and further strengthen their faith in the promise which was given to each.
Note who is absent in this meeting. The men. The seed of Adam has no part in the birth or, more important, even in the conception of Jesus. Joseph could not honorably travel with his bride to be. Now in these current days, you and I would not be surprised at all of the people who live together prior to marriage. But there was some degree of honor in those days. Certainly there was a lot of fooling around in those days too. But the point is that the men folk were not present. Zacharias was probably off by himself since he couldn't talk and that humbled him greatly. I would think that he was simply keeping to himself to avoid the embarrassment. Why else did God strike him with silence for such a long time. This probably afforded both Mary and Elizabeth and there respective pregnancies some protection from Zacharias' boasting and the repercussions it might bring. We saw in Matthew how Herod attempted to destroy the child after the Magi fooled him. Herod doesn't seem to know about these pregnancies yet.
So God protects the helpless and in this world we are all helpless in one way or another.
Elizabeth leaped with excitement when she heard Mary coming, and her baby leaped as well. When a mother gets excited there is movement of the fetus in the womb because of the stimulus from the mother. But this also indicates that the child was indeed healthy.
John would get excited when he sees Jesus coming toward him in the desert. Mary came to Elizabeth. Jesus came to John. And then the baptism occurred and John would become the lessor as Jesus would become the greater. The Bible is full of parallels that not only add to the credibility of the Bible, but emphasize its focus even on the tinniest of detail, from centuries of prophecy. No one nor could any group plan out such a complex hoax. It would be totally impossible for anyone in mankind to falsify the first appearance of Christ and thus fool history. This should strengthen your faith and eliminate any excuse for ignoring doctrine.
Elizabeth acknowledges the presence of the mother of Jesus, the mother of the humanity of our Lord. Mary was not the mother of God. God did not have a mother, and certainly not a human mother. But blessed is she among women for it is the seed of the woman that would be used to produce the humanity of Christ. And to be selected for this honor was indeed a blessing. Elizabeth did not feel hurt or left out, because she was the senior of Mary, the wife of a priest, but she felt happiness in the presence of Mary who was selected rather than her. Elizabeth did not feel or express jealousy at not having been chosen.
In life we can look around us and see the world passing us by. Others are very successful, at least on the surface it appears that way. We can easily get caught up in self pity because we do not have the things others have. But God has a plan for each of our lives. And each of us is equally great in God's eyes if we comply with His wil and grow spiritually. Just because Mary had this one blessing, does not in any way make her superior to anyone else. In the spiritual life there is no such thing as superiority. God has provided a level playing field for all of us. Only our negative volition can get in our way and prevent us from succeeding. The picture of the pregnancy of Christ has one more principle of thought. Gal. 4:19, refers to Christ formed in you, which is a picture of the infancy of a new believer. Eph. 3:17, Christ at home in you, is a picture of Christ fully developed and ready. Phil. 1:20, Christ glorified in your body expresses the mature status and the final growth stage giving birth to a new species, which is the mature believer.
Elizabeth confirmed her happiness and that of the motion of her child in her womb. The presence of the Holy Spirit further confirms their fellowship status in the presence of the mother of Jesus. Elizabeth further describes to us that it is Mary who believed in the promise and that there was going to be a fulfillment of not only the pregnancy, but the kingship of Christ and his eternal rulership as prophesied. Both women were mature believers and understood the events of their time. They were not fooled by some kind of con game against them, but recognized the truth, and that it was indeed from God. Mature believers have their eyes wide open and have the ability to recognize the realities of this world. Mature believers are still human and can make mistakes, but they pick themselves up and keep moving, leaving what is behind, behind and not looking back but looking forward.
Now is the time to post a prayer.
End Of Lesson
Study to show thyself approved (mature) unto God, a workman that needs not to be ashamed, rightly dividing (studying/discerning), the Word of truth.
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