Eve of Christmas
Scripture: St. Luke 1:46-56 (NKJV)
46 And Mary said: “My soul magnifies the Lord, 47 and my spirit has rejoiced in God my Savior. 48 For He has regarded the lowly state of His maidservant; For behold, henceforth all generations will call me blessed. 49 For He who is mighty has done great things for me, and holy is His name. 50 And His mercy is on those who fear Him from generation to generation. 51 He has shown strength with His arm; He has scattered the proud in the imagination of their hearts. 52 He has put down the mighty from their thrones, and exalted the lowly. 53 He has filled the hungry with good things, and the rich He has sent away empty. 54 He has helped His servant Israel, in remembrance of His mercy, 55 as He spoke to our fathers, to Abraham and to his seed forever.” 56 And Mary remained with her about three months, and returned to her house.
The beautiful song of Mary (which we know as the Magnificat in our Vespers services) amazingly proclaims the glory of God the Father, testifies to the wonders that the child in her womb, God the Son, will accomplish, and is entirely the divine work of God the Holy Spirit. This song is one more of the profound gifts that the Lord gives to His Church for the sake of teaching us and all nations about His merciful salvation.
Like Jesus, the Magnificat was born through Mary by the power of the Holy Spirit. And every aspect of this song testifies to our Lord Jesus Christ. From His promises to Adam and Eve that are fulfilled in Mary’s Son, to the fact that she was favored by God to be the channel through which the Savior would come to the world, to the fact that all the history and prophesy of Israel are culminated in Him, and ultimately to His victory of the evil one, these Words testify of Him.
These glorious words further emphasize that God’s work of salvation in Jesus Christ is not fickle decrees or vain abstractions. His work is His very real intervention into the created order that He established. He has been present with man from the beginning, has continued to mercifully work for our good throughout real historical events, and truly became a man of flesh and blood to earn our forgiveness. Because He has benevolently done all these things, our salvation is truly real and is the greatest blessing we have in our present life in this world.
We pray: Lord God, endless thanks and praise be to You on account of Your mercy shown to us in the flesh and blood reality of Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen.