He Will Be Called Holy
After Mary had heard that “the Lord is with her.” and that she has been shown favor. And we know that means grace; even before Jesus is mentioned in our text as we learned last Sunday.
So now we continue to read of the angel Gabriel’s message to Mary as he expounds greatly on the Holy Son to come.
Please stand for the reading of the Word
Read - Luke 1:31-38 “And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. And the Lord God will give to him the throne of his father David, and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there will be no end.” And Mary said to the angel, “How will this be, since I am a virgin?” And the angel answered her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; therefore the child to be born will be called holy—the Son of God. And behold, your relative Elizabeth in her old age has also conceived a son, and this is the sixth month with her who was called barren. For nothing will be impossible with God.” And Mary said, “Behold, I am the servant of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word.” And the angel departed from her.”
Luke 1:31 “And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus.”
Now Gabriel says to Mary “Behold” - and in the greek Behold means to see, view and perceive
And it’s important to notice the Angel who says “behold” means that He has seen, and or come to realize the message…
And we know Gabriel who is found to be standing in the presence of God.
So Behold what?
Before we continue on we have to understand where Mary is at emotionally, mentally and spiritually from our text last week.
So from last week we have to understand that Mary is already
“Troubled”- Meaning thrown into confusion as to whats being said in the angels greeting
And she is also “discerning” what kind of greeting this might be?
In the greek discern meaning - thinking deeply and thoroughly
Mary is already overwhelmed, by such news of this favor (which is God’s grace) and the presence of the Lord with her.
As we mentioned last week in the sermon, Jesus wasn’t yet mentioned but today we will see His name.
What more could anyone take at this point?
“And behold (see, or view)…you will conceive in your womb and bear a son and you shall call his name Jesus.
We have to go back and receive this message in context such as Mary would of received it.
Mary as we learned last week is betrothed to Jospeh
Meaning she is saving herself for her husband to consumate their marriage and have children
But Gabriel tells her that she “will conceive in your womb...”
Mary you will become pregnant, short and sweet.
Hold on now! Mary is about to get married, she can’t become pregnant yet?
What might of been running through her head?
Culturally in this time: The unfaithfulness in the waiting of betrothal:
Holman Illustrated Bible Dictionary (Betrothal)
The penalty under the law of Moses for disrupting this principle by adultery, rape, fornication, or incest was death by stoning (Deut. 22:23–30).
Later under some circumstances the Jewish legal system allowed divorce.
So this news from the angel, that she will conceive and or become pregnant is a huge deal...
Culturally speaking - and for the sake of her future marriage with Joseph:
But we know in the Gospel of Matthew that Gabriel was sent to Joseph to tell him of this child in His soon to be Wives womb.
And that Joesph planned to secretly divorce her we know…
But God had all of the details worked out so that the Angel Gabriel was sent to Joseph to tell him what Mary was told
That this child is from the Holy Spirit
Matt 1:18-21 “Now the birth of Jesus Christ took place in this way. When his mother Mary had been betrothed to Joseph, before they came together she was found to be with child from the Holy Spirit. And her husband Joseph, being a just man and unwilling to put her to shame, resolved to divorce her quietly. But as he considered these things, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, “Joseph, son of David, do not fear to take Mary as your wife, for that which is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit.
Luke 1:31 “And behold, you will conceive in your womb (and I am working out all the details) and bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus.”
and…bear - meaning to bring into the world in greek
Gabriel letting her know it will not be a daughter, but a Son
And his name will be what? Jesus!
Notice Mary didn’t get to pick the name, just like Zechariah didn’t get to pick the name for John. No his name will be
Jesus, because that is who He has always been!
Jesus which in OT Hebrew means - “salvation”
Re-Read - Luke 1:31 “And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus.”
Luke 1:32 “He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. And the Lord God will give to him the throne of his father David,”
And now enter in Jesus; the Messiah to come, mentioned in the narrative Luke writes.
The one John was to “prepare the way for”
But as Mary hears this news, as she is not already baffled at the grace, favor and presence of the Lord
Maybe for Marry Isaiah 7:14 - comes to mind. “Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.”
Is she the one this OT Scriptures speaks of?
So now Gabriel expounds on who this Son, Jesus will be.
“He will be great...”
“He” - being Jesus her Son whom Gabriel is telling her about
“will be great” - remarkable; or important in the greek definition
Example - For when we claim someone to be a “great basketball player” Say for instance Luca Doncic who plays for the Dallas Mavericks - so he is remarkable; has great skills; as you watch him in his young age averaging a triple double, making amazing passes, and shooting step back threes you would notice his greatness.
And he will one day be listed in the hall of fame with the greats like Michael Jordan, or Larry Bird
So when someone Is great in a specific skill or sport; we know it Because we see it.
If we can remember from Luke 1:15 that Zechariah is told this about John:
As it says... “he (John) will be great before the Lord.
Meaning John isn’t the greatest, even though his birth announcement was first
But here in our text the angel Gabriel says “He will be great, not “he will be great before....” …
Notice the difference John will be great before someone; that someone being the Lord
But the Son to come will be great before no one!
Because Jesus is indeed the pinnacle of greatness!
“...and will be called the Son of the Most High...”
As if being the greatest isn’t enough
So now Gabriel says this Son, who is Jesus who is great and who also is “Son of the Most High...”
The most High God is a term taken from the Septuagint, and translates a Hebrew word that was often used by non-Israelites who confessed the true God. In many languages the concept of “highness” also means “greatness,” but this is not necessarily true.
A literal translation of Most High might imply merely a position on top of other gods but without necessarily suggesting greater importance. In such instances the closest equivalent of the Most High God is “the Greatest God.”
And so for Mary being Jewish not of Israelite descent; the term “The Most High God.” would of made sense to her.
Verse 33 “He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High... And the Lord God will give to him the throne of his father, David
“And the Lord God” (Father)
Will give “Jesus His Son” what?
“The throne of his father, David...”
Why is this important?
We know from OT prophecy about the Messiah to come:
Is 9:7 “Of the increase of his government and of peace there will be no end, on the throne of David and over his kingdom, to establish it and to uphold it with justice and with righteousness from this time forth and forevermore. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will do this.”
So Mary hearing this and being Jewish this is not new news
But revealing news that this one the angel is speaking of is way more than a normal Son.
But as we know Great, and Son of the Most High who will take the throne.
“This young girl named Mary was a godly woman. Surely, she knew the pages of the Old Testament Scriptures. Surely, she understood that David’s Son, whose kingdom would last forever, would be the Messiah of Israel.” R.C. Sproul
Ps 132:11 “The Lord swore to David a sure oath from which he will not turn back: “One of the sons of your body I will set on your throne.”
2 Sam 7:16 “And your house and your kingdom shall be made sure forever before me. Your throne shall be established forever.’ ”
Maybe for Mary it is starting to make sense and become more clear?
Luke 1:33 “He will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there will be no end.””
“and He will reign” - meaning Gabriel is saying that this Son who is Jesus, who is greatest and the Son of the Most High who will take the throne…and He will reign...”
“He will reign” - meaning in the greek to be King, to rule and control completely
And remember from last week us looking at Jospeh and his lineage in Luke 1:27 “to a virgin betrothed to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David. And the virgin’s name was Mary.”
So we can see exactly what the Scriptures says will come to pass in Psalm 132:11 “The Lord swore to David a sure oath from which he will not turn back: “One of the sons of your body I will set on your throne.”
Notice it says “throne”
See when we hear of a throne so who comes to mind is someone great right? Someone who sits “High”?
The Word was coming to pass and King Jesus was on the horizon; ready to reign.
And being brought forth by the womb of a Virgin named Mary
“and of His Kingdom there will be no end.”
See their are endings to every King’s rule but not Jesus’s Kingdom which is forever
And we as God’s Children are apart of this Kingdom that will never be brought to an end.
Luke 1:34 “And Mary said to the angel, “How will this be, since I am a virgin?””
Brothers and Sisters in Christ Mary didn’t ask why?
But she did ask how?
How. Meaning she believed it to be true. - there was no doubt that God couldn't’ do this
But she wanted to know the details.
So as trouble, discernment and favor were present; we need to be clear that this is NOT doubt in Mary’s heart in this moment but more so trust and curiosity, asking how?
Like when Ezras asks me how chickens lay eggs: - He doesn’t believe they don’t He just wants to know the details.
“Look Daddy the Chickens are making a baby”
Important to know here:
Mary is not an unbeliever so faith in God is present, as their is favor, so favor and faith they come hand in hand
“for the grace of God has appeared bringing salvation for all people...”
Mary being godly knew this sounded like Good News, familiar news that had to come to pass eventually, and realistically
But Mary had a legitimate point to ask Gabriel how?
How will this be - in the greek “will this be” - meaning to exist, or be possible?
If the Son of the Most High is to be born in her womb and she knows consummation takes place between man and woman, so her question of How is accurate?
“But from Mary’s perspective, from the perspective of the natural, there was no way this announcement could come true. It was against the laws of nature.”
So the angel Gabriel mentions the supernatural work of God; through the third person of the Trinity
Luke 1:35 “And the angel answered her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you,...and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; therefore the child to be born will be called holy—the Son of God.”
The angel Gabriel answers Mary’s how question.
Not a man, not with Joseph her soon to be husband, but of the Holy Spirit
We know that in Zechariah’s story; he and his wife Elizabeth conceived: As God’s Word said so:
But here we see the “Holy Spirit”
The third person of the Trinity now enters the orderly account that Luke writes
Even before Jesus baptized for his ministry, even before the upper room; so we read of the Holy Spirit that now dwells in us
Luke 1:35 “And the angel answered her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; therefore the child to be born will be called holy—the Son of God.”
and “power...of the Most High will overshadow you;”
Power in greek meaning dynamis - manifesting influence over reality in a supernatural manner.
Meaning what we see as natural, so God has the power and means to work in and through what is natural to us; in ways we can’t logically understand to bring about His purposes and glory in the earth.
So we see limits in nature; but to God their are no limits and He can do over reality in His power what we seem to think is impossible.
Just as it is a miracle for any to be filled with the Holy Spirit: as we don’t know where the wind comes from.
Yes we trust in Jesus as Lord and Savior but the rest is mysterious, but a faithful and true moment of power filling us.
Which is God working in the natural; by means of supernatural powers He has.
Changing our hearts from hearts of stone, to hearts of flesh by giving us the gift of the Holy Spirit
Now you please expound on this in full detail? - Miracles and God’s power is unexplainable; yet in faith we can move on in peace knowing He can do all things.
So the “power…of the Most High will overshadow you…”
We see the word again “Most High” in this verse 35 of Luke chapter 1
Referring to God the Father in heaven
And so here we have a very clear representation of the Trinity at work in our text of Luke 1:31-38
Father - The Most High
Son - Jesus
Holy Spirit - will come upon you and the power of the Most high will overshadow you...
The Trinity being one God in three persons, so we see all of God at work in this text.
God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit
and the power of the Most High will overshadow you;...
“...therefore (meaning because of these moments and how they have unfolded, because Jesus will be born of the Holy Spirit) the child to be born will be called holy—the Son of God.”
Mat 1:18 “Now the birth of Jesus Christ took place in this way. When his mother Mary had been betrothed to Joseph, before they came together she was found to be with child from the Holy Spirit.”
As the angle was telling Mary she would have a son, so with his words came confirmation “the child to be born...”
Meaning this is no joke, this will occur in time
Mary a young jewish women from Nazareth you are going to conceive
But what will Jesus be?
the child to be born will be called holy...he Son of God.”
“Holy” - meaning set apart in the greek.
It’s important to see that this conception is NOT of sinful man, but of the Holy Spirit
Mary you don’t have to understand; you have to trust that this Son who is Jesus, who is great, who is the Son of the Most High The one who will sit on the throne of His Father David and one who will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there will be no end.”
And that He will be called Holy, the Son of God.”
Gabriel uses very clear speech here where this is no need for repeating
Mary will bear a Son named Jesus, who is set apart from the world, the Holy Son of God.
See Jesus not conceived as every other human is with sin in our being, and our flesh:
But God overcoming reality, & the natural which is inherently all sinful.
So with supernatural ability and power to place Jesus in Marys’ womb, by the Holy Spirit
So Jesus who is Holy, (set apart) not stained with sin like all of us who are from the seed of Adam who disobeyed God and brought sin upon all humanity
Holman Illustrated Bible Dictionary (Holy)
HOLY Biblical use of the term “holy” has to do primarily with God’s separating from the world that which He chooses to devote to Himself.
Luke 1:35 “And the angel answered her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; therefore the child to be born will be called holy—the Son of God....
Luke 1:36 “And behold, your relative Elizabeth in her old age has also conceived a son, and this is the sixth month with her who was called barren.”
Now we know what happened in Luke 1:5-24
The Birth of John the baptist foretold:
That Zechariah’s prayer “had been answered”
And Elizabeth would bear a son and his name shall be called John
So now Mary finds out not from anyone else; except from the message of the Lord that her “relative in her old age has also conceived a son and this is the sixth month with her who was called barren.”
What is God doing with Mary in sharing this news with her about Elizabeth?
First of all I find it sweet that God would allow Elizabeth to bear John, and Mary to bear Jesus
And Mary being related, as it’s sweet that they can be pregnant together and at the same time.
But “Elizabeth” “was called barren.”
If Mary was close to Elizabeth it was no doubt that she knew the trouble she carried, the burden she carried, the shame she carried...”The reproach among people”
That she could not bear a child in her womb, as she was barren and as it’s been a LONG time trying to conceive for her and Zechariah
Now this announcement of Elizabeth bearing a son begins to bless and assure Mary to know the Lord has also found favor with Elizabeth; in her old age
But what else?
God is showing Mary He can bring to fruition & do what He promises He will do.
That He can answer prayers in His timing
And as these prayers are answered, no matter the natural limitations that we might hold up to God He can work and move as He pleases.
And the angel Gabriel speaks to Mary; and these next words are important
Luke 1:37 “For nothing will be impossible with God.””
The One who stands in the presence of God says this boldly and surly
Meaning no womb is to barren that Lord can’t make bear a son and be fruitful
No obstacle the Lord has in His way!
No planet in the solar system that he can’t make vanish and their be not a speck of dust left
No atom that he can’t realign to form something new
”for nothing will be impossible with God.” Mary.
He is all things and in this statement by the angel Gabriel...
So you would begin to see Mary have peace with this truth or message. That she is the chosen one, favored one to bear the Savior fo the world, yes being conceived by the Holy Spirit to bring forth Jesus the Son of the Most High.
Luke 1:38 “And Mary said, “Behold, I am the servant of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word.” And the angel departed from her.”
How did the angel Gabriel begin in verse 31?
“Behold”- to become aware; to be seen to have sight
What was present in Mary that was a gift from the Lord?
Faith and trust that this would come to pass. Jesus would be born of her womb.
This wasn’t for Mary a moment of salvation but a moment of deep growth, trust and sanctification in the Lord.
Mary knew who she was in the Lord as the Lord revealed this to her.
And No matter the details of it all she wouldn’t seek to understand it all, but trust God’s Word
But one thing is sure she would receive this message of Good News, with faith and trust that God can do this in me for His glory.
See the one to speak the words “behold” is this one who has understood and seen
“and Mary said to the angel “behold”
Mary, while she may still not fully understand all the details of how, so she understands the meaning of the message, the saying of the Good News Jesus to come
She even goes on to say
I am the servant of the Lord.... let it be to me according to your word.” And the angel departed from her.”
Mary is not her own, and she is willing to be used as a precious vessel by God however this might be; and in our story this is to bear in her womb, a Son named Jesus conceived by the Holy Spirit
“...let it be according to your word.”
This lets us know that Mary was not unaware of the Scriptures; and above all else wanted God’s will to be done.
To be about this message so quickly, means she too was anticipating the arrival of the Savior to come, the Messiah Christ the Lord. (Maybe her not thinking she would be Jesus mom)
So this Word who is Jesus, who is to be the greatest, The Son of the Most High, and is to reign and be King over the house of Jacob, and of His Kingdom there will be no end.”
He will be called the Holy Son of God, because He was conceived of the Holy Spirit.
Jesus here is called Holy:
Holy meaning set apart from the world
Meaning Jesus was not conceived in sin
Jesus is the only one to be conceived by the Holy Spirit
Which means He alone is the only one to save us from our sins.
But now we as Christians have received the gift of the Holy Spirit in faith to “be filled” with the promised Holy Spirit
And as we can see Mary who was godly, not that she did not believe for “Mary found favor” - Salvation being revealed to her in God’s timing.
And Just for us so salvation is revealed to us in God’s timing.
See as Christians sometimes we think “gosh this is impossible!” when faced with natural limitations
When faced with disease, famine, war or difficult trials
We can know this morning that nothing is impossible with God. - Meaning Christ who was conceived by the Holy Spirit in Mary was only a work of God. (Water to wine, multiplied bread and fish, split the seas, let SMA dance in fire)
“nothing is impossible with God.” - There is nothing He can’t do.
You in here believers and unbelievers the gift of faith and regeneration through the Holy Spirit is something only God can do in us; it’s impossible for us to save ourselves.
And this gift of salvation is something God has predestinated for His Holy children; to be revealed to us that we can see.
Ephesians 2:8-9 “For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.”
For the Unbeliever in here:
You may think their is “no way” God would accept me?
You are right not upon your good works and stained deeds
You must turn to Jesus this morning and put your faith and trust in Him and be saved from your sins.
John 14:6 “Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”
For those in Christ:
Psalm 4:3 “But know that the Lord has set apart the godly for himself; the Lord hears when I call to him.”
In His timing He has let us “behold” and in His timing He has revealed to us this favor and grace.
Not from any good we have done!
Christians have seen the glory, of the Son of God who was conceived by the Holy Spirit; by grace; through faith.
And it’s been “Behled” to us that Jesus paid a debt and price we could not; to cover our sins with His righteous, and perfect blood
For Him to be buried in the tomb, only to rise again on the third day defeating sin, hell and the grave forever
and giving us His “chosen” this gift of the Holy Spirit & we are glad Jesus did this? Why becuase His Word says so.
John 16:7 “Nevertheless, I tell you the truth: it is to your advantage that I go away, for if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you. But if I go, I will send him to you.”
Mary who at first did not behold; now has spoken the words behold to the angle, meaning she has come to understand
We know that Mary was godly and feared the Lord (so we as Christians this morning have faith and believe)
But Mary in this moment came to understand that truly “Nothing is impossible with God’
Do you believe this truth this morning?
God Helped Elizabeth her relative bear a son in her old age.
So she could trust in the Angel Gabriels message from the Father in heaven.
That Jesus the Messiah to come; the one who would save mankind from the grips of sin (which was impossible for man on our own to do so) would be born in her womb by the Holy Spirit. “The Holy Son of God”
For no current King could do what King Jesus was sent to do, Holy set apart from sin; to take on the blow of sin and shame for us that we might become the righteousness of God in Christ Jesus
Matt 1:21 “She will bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.””
Church this morning we have the Holy Spirit meaning we have been set apart By God to be sanctified in Christ by the power and working of the Holy Spirit; to one day be glorified with Christ at His return.
1st Peter 1:16 “since it is written, “You shall be holy, for I am holy.””