08152020 – Mary, Mother of Our Lord

 

Mary is far more of a “Biblical character” than most of us realize.

 

Mary is REPEATEDLY MENTIONED in the canonical gospels and in the Book of Acts.

 

There are like a dozen of mentions “of SPECIFIC INCIDENTS in her life” that were actually recorded and written down.  Not all of them being FAVORABLE, either!

 

And there were probably MANY MORE that were NOT recorded or written down for posterity.  (very simply because the message was about Jesus, and not about his mother…)  And of course, it was, as you well know, a PATRIARCHAL society.

 

Obviously, we know all about her BETROTHAL to Joseph and “all the DRAMA” that surrounded that event.

 

The church celebrates “The ANNUNCIATION” by the angel Gabriel, when she was informed that she was CHOSEN to be the mother of the MESSIAH.

 

Her visit to her kinswoman or cousin, ELIZABETH, the mother of John the Baptizer is well known.  The Church has simply referred to it as being, THE VISITATION.  Such a young woman to be gallivanting by herself, throughout the Judean Hill country while she herself was WITH CHILD.

 

And of course, there is the NATIVITY of Our Lord, celebrated every year at Christmas time.  Mary oftentimes, playing the LEAD ROLE.

 

Such a “young woman.”  Giving birth in such strange and unique circumstances.  Then, like now, it was during a CENSUS OF ALL THE PEOPLE.

 

It must be duly noted that it was an EMPERIAL CENSUS that caused chaos in the lives of a great many people.  There were no MAIL-IN Census forms!!!

 

We also have Mary center-stage as it were, at the VISITS of both common-everyday-SHEPHERDS and MAGI or Zoroastrian Priests or Royalty from the far EAST.

 

It was the latter who came bearing gifts fit for a KING, even the KING of Israel.

 

And we know that Mary and Joseph were good and faithful TORAH abiding JEWS who held on to the LAWS OF MOSES.

 

Thus, we have the PRESENTATION of Our Lord, on the 8th day according to the Law of Moses.  Jesus was circumcised according to the beliefs and practices of his people.

 

It is because of the BIBLICAL RECORD that we are aware of the ESCAPE of the HOLY FAMILY and their FLIGHT into Egypt to flee the wrath of King Herod.

 

It is record causally linked to the historical record of the time.

 

Jesus appears with his mother and father in the TEMPLE at the age of 12, just in time for his Bar-mitzvah.

 

And Mary is present with Jesus for his very first recorded miracle at the Wedding Feast at Cana in Galilee, changing water into wine.

 

Mary again reappears out of concern with the brothers and sisters of Jesus, for his safety and for his well-being.

 

Her presence at the crucifixion witnessing her son’s execution at the hands of the Roman government.  That being the moment in time when she is commended to the care of his beloved disciple, John.

 

Mary was included at the gathering in the Upper Room after the Ascension as she too awaited the coming of the Holy Spirit.

 

She is specifically referred to as being present at most of the important events in her son’s life.  She was simply, always there.

 

She is remembered and honored for her “UNCONDITIONAL OBEDIENCE” to the WILL OF GOD, for her LOYALTY to her son, even when she did not understand him or his ministry and for the HONOR bestowed upon her as being the Mother of Our Lord.

 

It is according to tradition that Mary went with the APOSTLE JOHN to Ephesus, where she died.  However, some traditions do say that she lived and died in Jerusalem and a “TOMB OF THE VIRGIN” exists to this very day in the Kidron Valley.

 

And long before there was a Hollywood, she was known by a single name, “MARY.”

 

And this is her day.

 

Amen.