Monday, April 24, 2017
The Son Of A Virgin
By Pastor Cornelius R. Stam
“Behold, a virgin shall be with child” (Matt. 1:23).
Mary was highly honored that she should be chosen to be the virgin mother of Messiah. This was a distinction for which every Jewish woman had hoped and prayed. But — now that she had heard the glad news from the angel Gabriel, she was to find herself in the most embarrassing position of an unmarried maiden with child. Little wonder that Mary hastened to the hill country to visit Elisabeth, the mother-to-be of miraculously-born John, later called John the Baptist. Who, in such a case, would better understand, or be better fitted to give sympathetic advice to Mary?
Mary remained with Elisabeth for about three months, or until the birth of John the Baptist (Luke 1:36,56), but now the real test lay ahead, for she must return to her home in Nazareth to face her relatives and acquaintances — and Joseph, her love. What would they say? And above all, what would he say? How could they be expected to believe her story? An angel had appeared to her, indeed!
In the record of Joseph’s reactions we are given light as to the extreme embarrassment in which Mary now found herself. Consider Joseph’s position. Mary was his “espoused wife.” Why had she gone away — and stayed so long? And now, what is this? She is found with child — not by him. Her explanation, if indeed she offered it to him, must have seemed most unsatisfactory. He could have charged her with adultery and had her stoned, but “being a just [Lit., “fair-minded”] man” he “was minded to put her away privily” (Matt. 1:19).
But “while he thought on these things,” with a heavy heart, “the angel of the Lord appeared unto him” and Joseph learned the truth; that she was indeed to be the honored mother of the Messiah of Israel, the Redeemer of sinners.
It was because our Lord was the Son of God, born into the world by a virgin and not partaking of Adam’s sinful nature, that He could go to Calvary and pay the full penalty for our sins. He “suffered for sins, the Just for the unjust, that He might bring us to God” (I Pet. 3:18).