Sunday, December 19, 2004

The Highly Favored of God

Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. (Luke 1:30)
The angel Gabriel had been sent to Nazareth, a city in the Galilee district, to Mary, who was betrothed to Joseph. He said, “Rejoice, highly favored one, the Lord is with you; blessed are you among women!”

That was quite a greeting — to discover the great favor of God so fully upon her life. She did not know what to make of it. How could it be? She was just a young woman, a teenager.

The angel reassured her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God.” Yes, God was for her, not against her. Not only that, He was ready to extend the full weight and authority of His goodness and power on her behalf. For that is what the word “favor” means. It is the Greek word charis — grace!

God’s grace was making an entrance into the world in a manner and fullness never seen on earth before, and it was now being announced to this young Jewish girl. This grace was not just for Mary, but for the sake of the whole world. Mary was blessed as the vessel of entry for this new and ultimate expression of God’s favor upon mankind.

Mary was highly favored of God, but so are you if you have received the Lord Jesus Christ. Are you ready to believe the favor of God and receive this great blessing? Are you ready to walk in the power of it, backed by the decree of heaven and the love of God?